Detroit — A 21-year-old man was sentenced today to 26 to 52 years in prison for shooting a 12-year-old Detroit girl to death in a dispute over a cellphone.
Joshua Brown was given 24 to 50 years in prison for second-degree murder in the 2012 slaying of Kadejah Davis, plus a mandatory two-year term for felony firearms. Judge Vonda Evans of Wayne County Circuit Court also gave Brown 14 to 30 years for assault with intent to commit murder; that sentence will be served concurrent to the other terms.
Authorities say the girl was shot Jan. 31, 2012, during a dispute between her mother, Almanda Talton, and Brown’s 35-year-old mother, Heather Brown, over the cellphone, which was allegedly stolen from the tax preparation business where Heather Brown worked.
In sentencing Joshua Brown, Evans said he “should have been man enough to let (his mother) fight her own battle instead of bringing you into her mess.”
Joshua Brown, who was 19 at the time, accompanied his mother to Talton’s house on Ferguson Street, where Heather Brown allegedly confronted Talton. The dispute ended with Brown firing multiple shots into Talton’s home, striking Kadejah and killing her, prosecutors said.
Hundreds attended the girl’s funeral in an outpouring of grief and outrage over the shooting.
The child was a sixth-grader at Detroit Yes Academy. In court Tuesday, Evans praised the girl as a “perfect student, perfect daughter, perfect friend and perfect person.”
Before Brown’s punishment by Evans was read, Davis’ aunt Tamara Laney read a letter from Davis’ mother calling Brown a “devil’s advocate” and a “coward.”
“I thank God this terror is off the street,” Talton said in her letter. Talton also said her daughter was a beautiful and respectable child who was a “brainiac.”
After the hearing, Talton said, “I thank God this is over.”
Heather Brown pleaded no contest to being an accessory after the fact for driving her son to Davis’ home. She was sentenced to five years probation in October 2012.
It was the second trial for Joshua Brown, who was charged with first-degree murder. A judge declared a mistrial last year in the first trial.