Judge Sentences Defendant to 8 Years in Prison for Shooting 11-year-old

During an Aug. 4 hearing, one of four defendants charged with the death of 11-year-old Davon McNeal was sentenced to 8 years in prison.

Daryle Bond, 20, pleaded guilty Feb. 18 to voluntary manslaughter while armed with aggravating circumstances. He was initially charged with conspiracy, first-degree murder while armed during aggravating circumstances, possession of a firearm during a crime of violence, and carrying a pistol without a license.

During Thursday’s hearing, McNeal’s family was present in the courtroom. Since the family previously spoke during a June 3 sentencing of the other three defendants who were also convicted for the shooting, the prosecutor read a victim impact statement from McNeal’s mother. He said he read it to prevent the family from having to go through more emotional turmoil. 

“No time you are sealed will ever be enough for the life you took from us,” McNeal’s mother wrote in a letter written to Bond and the three other defendants. “Davon should be here with us and not 6 feet under.”

In response, Bond addressed the family and apologized for his actions. 

“I’m sorry this happened. Davon had a lot of life ahead of him. He did not deserve what happened to him,” Bond told the family. “He is my younger brother’s best friend. I know there is nothing I can do or say to take back the pain I’ve caused.”

Defense attorney’s Roderick Thompson and Christen Philips argued that Bond should be sentenced to 7 and a half years in prison under the DC Youth Rehabilitation Act. The Youth Rehabilitation Act, which was first enacted in 1985, provides sentencing alternatives for young adult offenders under the age of 25 at the time the crime was committed, according to the Bureau of Prisons website.

“Daryle has consistently displayed remorse. It is something that he is going to carry with him for the rest of his life.” Thompson said. 

The defense also brought in a pretrial services officer who said Bond would benefit from the Youth Rehabilitation Act. Additionally, the defense requested DC Superior Court Judge Rainey Brandt recommend to the Bureau of Prisons that Bond be placed in the BRAVE Program. 

The BRAVE program is a cognitive behavioral, residential program for young males, serving their first federal sentence, according to the website. Inmates participate in this program at the beginning of their sentence and interact in groups and attend community meetings during their time in the program. There are only two prisons that have this program, with one being on the west coast. 

Judge Brandt expressed her condolences to the family and rejected the defense’s request to sentence Bond to 7 and a half years in prison. Bond will serve 8 years in prison, which will be followed by 5 years of supervised release. He must also register as a gun offender.

 Judge Brandt also agreed to recommend Bond to the BRAVE program and PTSD treatment. 

Bond’s co-defendants received their sentences in June. Carlo General, 22, who was sentenced to 16 years in prison; Marcel Gordon, 27, who was sentenced to 10 years in prison; and Christen Wingfield, 24, who was sentenced to 9 and a half years in prison. 

MPD officers responded to the 1400 block of Cedar Street, SE on July 4, 2020, and located 11-year-old McNeal lying on the ground with a gunshot wound to the head. McNeal was transported to the hospital but life-saving efforts failed and he was pronounced dead. 

“I’ve just given you a fully healthy second chance. Turn it around.” Brandt said.