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Press Release

District Man Sentenced To 25-Year Prison Term For Fatal Gun Battle In Clay Terrace Neighborhood-Shooting Resulted In The Murder Of A 15-Year-Old Innocent Bystander-

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Columbia

     WASHINGTON - Antonio Barnes, 21, of Washington, D.C., was sentenced today to a 25-year prison term for his role in a shootout in which two people were killed, including a 15-year-old bystander, U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. announced. The gunfire took place in 2009 while young children were walking home from school in the Clay Terrace area.

     In May 2013, Barnes, along with his co-defendants, Earl Jackson, 20, and Sequarn Tibbs, 22, each pled guilty in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia to two counts of voluntary manslaughter, and one count each of conspiracy, assault with a dangerous weapon, and carrying a pistol without a license. Barnes, also known as “Squirt,” was sentenced by the Honorable Herbert B. Dixon, Jr. Jackson will be sentenced on Sept. 13, 2013 and Tibbs on Nov. 7, 2013.

     According to the government’s evidence, on Oct. 13, 2009, Barnes and his co-defendants were members of a group they called “Young Savage” from the 37th Street/37th Place neighborhood of Southeast Washington. Barnes, Jackson, Tibbs, and others, including Tibbs’s identical twin brother, Daquan Tibbs, went to the Clay Terrace neighborhood seeking to avenge a burglary from Jackson’s Clay Terrace home.

     The gun battle began after Barnes and his co-defendants entered a common area of Clay Terrace in the early afternoon hours, just as neighborhood schools were letting out, and Sequarn Tibbs opened fire on the Clay Terrace residents who were gathered. A 15-year old innocent bystander, Davonta Artis, was shot and killed during this gun battle.  Daquan Tibbs, then 18, also was killed and three other men were seriously injured.

     After warrants were issued for their arrests, Barnes, Jackson and Tibbs fled the area. Barnes and Jackson were ultimately arrested in January 2012 in Charlotte, N.C., after they were featured on the “America’s Most Wanted” television program and tips were provided as to their whereabouts. Tibbs was captured in September 2010 in New York.

     In announcing today’s sentence, U.S. Attorney Machen commended the work of the detectives of the Metropolitan Police Department’s (MPD) Cold Case/Major Case Squad, officers of the MPD’s Sixth District and the Firearms Unit, and the detective who coordinated the nationwide search for Barnes, Jackson and Tibbs.  He also commended the work of those who handled the case for the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including Paralegal Specialists Alesha Matthews-Yette, Kendra Johnson, Kwasi Fields, Sandra Lane, Meridith McGarrity and Fern Rhedrick; Litigation Technology Specialist Leif Hickling; Intelligence Specialist Lawrence Grasso; Investigative Analyst Zachary McMenamin; Criminal Investigator Durand Odom; Victim/Witness Advocate Marcia Rinker, and Law Clerks Flynn Burke and Cadene Russell.

     In addition, he acknowledged the efforts of former Assistant U.S. Attorneys Sean Tonolli, J.P. Cooney, Heather Carlton, and Sharad Khandelwal, who were involved in the investigation and presentation of evidence during the early phases of these cases.

     Finally, Mr. Machen commended the work of Assistant U.S. Attorneys Reagan Taylor and Deborah Sines, who indicted and prosecuted the case.


Updated February 19, 2015