NANCY POWELL ¦ Staff Writer
(Oct. 12,2012) A 17-year-old was released from jail last Thursday, but he won’t be returning to school because he was convicted of underage possession of a firearm.
“He’s forfeited his ability to go to high school,” said Nathan Long, defense attorney for Kevonte Shaquel Hall of Salisbury, in Circuit Court in Snow Hill on Oct. 4.
“This has changed his entire life,” said Charles Hall, the defendant’s father.
Kevonte Hall was just 16 when he came to Ocean City with his cousins, Kirkland Jon Hall III, 18, and Floyd Thomas Bivens III, 19, both of Salisbury, on June 11, 2011. They were in a parking lot near North Division Street when an undercover police officer approached and asked Kirkland Hall if he had any marijuana.
Hall left, but returned with Bivens and Keonte Hall, and then sold marijuana to the police officer for $40. As the arrest team arrived, the three ran, but were caught.
Keonte Hall threw something under a vehicle and it made a metallic sound. When a detective looked beneath the vehicle, he found a pistol with six rounds of ammunition. An investigation later revealed that the handgun had been used in a shooting in Somerset County.
After his arrest, Hall was ordered to stand trial as an adult. A few weeks ago, his attorney asked that he be tried as a juvenile, but the judge would not allow it.
In court Oct. 4, Hall pleaded guilty to underage possession of a firearm and conspiracy to distribute marijuana. He had been in jail since Feb. 2, 2012.
“You will either learn your lesson from this or you won’t,” Judge Richard Bloxom said.
Bloxom also told Hall to disassociate with criminals, including his cousins. He then sentenced Hall to two years in prison, with all suspended but nine months and he gave Hall credit for 243 days already served. He also fined him $500 and put him on three years supervised probation.
For the charge of conspiracy to distribute marijuana, Bloxom sentenced Hall to one year incarceration, consecutive to the first sentence. He then suspended that sentence and ordered three years of supervised probation plus 40 hours of community service.
Kirkland Hall was convicted Jan. 5, 2012, of distribution of marijuana and sentenced to 18 months in jail, with all suspended but one month. He is on probation for three years.
Bivens was convicted Oct. 13, 2011 of conspiracy to distribute marijuana and transporting a handgun. He was sentenced to three years in prison.