A homicide defendant accused of murdering a 27-year-old man pleaded guilty on June 23 to second-degree murder while armed.
On July 21, 2021, Rondez Tibbs entered a convenience store on Martin Luther King Avenue, SE, according to court documents. He approached 27-year-old Malcolm Johnson and attempted to take a cross body bag from him which led to a struggle between Johnson and Tibbs. Surveillance video shows Johnson fighting off Tibbs and, in the midst of the fight, Johnson’s handgun went off. Both individuals in the fight were shot.
The victim is later seen getting into the defendant’s parked vehicle and driving towards Talbert Street, SE where he later crashed into a moving vehicle and succumbed to his injuries. Johnson was found in the vehicle unconscious and suffering from an apparent gunshot wound to the stomach.
Terms of the plea deal include a sentencing recommendation of 9.5 years to 14 years in prison. Tibbs, who was on probation at the time, also had his probation revoked. Tibbs was on probation for robbery and unlawful possession of a firearm with a prior conviction. He will have to serve the remainder of the sentences for those convictions, which equals out to more than 3 years. The time will run concurrently with the plea offer’s sentence.
The prosecution stated that the decedent’s family objected to the plea deal but plans to issue an impact statement at the sentencing.
D.C. Superior Court Judge Maribeth Raffinan accepted the guilty plea and set a sentencing date for Oct. 7.