Lafayette man found guilty of murder

A jury has found Andre Hastings guilty of murder and not guilty on one charge of attempted murder.

Posted: Oct 15, 2020 1:43 PM
Updated: Oct 15, 2020 6:25 PM

LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — A jury on Thursday found Andre Hastings guilty of murder and not guilty of attempted murder in an Aug. 2, 2019, shooting that killed Drequan Burglar.

Hastings shook his head and glanced around the courtroom as Judge Steve Meyer read the verdict, but did not show much emotion.
His family members rushed out of the courtroom in tears.

The trial started Tuesday and ended Thursday with closing arguments by the defense and prosecution. The jury deliberated for about two hours. 

As WLFI previously reported, Hastings faced one charge of murder in the death of Burglar and one charge of attempted murder of Jonathan Simpson, who was talking outside with Burglar the night he was killed.

But the jury was told during the trial that attempted murder is harder to prove because the prosecution must show specific intent.

Defense attorney Scott King argued throughout the trial that Hastings' friend fired the fatal shots.

"I think there was enough indication of the potential of somebody else wielding the gun in this case to avoid being convicted on the charge in count, so I am disappointed in that," he said.

The prosecution claimed surveillance footage showed Hastings pointing and firing a gun before running from the scene of the shooting.

Deputy prosecutor Cassidy Laux argued testimony from witnesses corroborated the footage. He also pointed to Hastings’ cell phone records, which he argued showed Hastings fleeing to the Chicago area on the morning of the shooting.

King argued the security footage didn't show a muzzle flash near Hastings or the two victims. He also criticized the prosecution for not keeping Burglar’s clothes as evidence, which, he said, could have showed his proximity to the fatal shot.

Burglar's sister, Raashay Langford, said he was full of life and a big music fan who loved eating mac and cheese. She said he put his family first and loved his children.

"I'm thankful, I'm very thankful for the verdict, but it's not going to bring my brother back," she said. "Like, it's different from him actually being here with his family, his kids, his babies."

The jury also decided Hastings can receive an enhanced sentence for using a gun during the crime. He faces 45 to 65 years for the murder charge and five to ten years for the firearm enhancement.

His sentencing hearing is scheduled from 10 a.m. to noon on Dec. 22. 

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