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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of California

Friday, July 17, 2015

Oakland Man Found Guilty Of Murder In Christmas Marijuana Robbery Near Oakland Airport

Federal Jury Convicts Damion Sleugh of First Degree Murder

OAKLAND – Earlier today, a federal jury convicted Damion Sleugh of six felonies, including first degree murder, robbery, and drug conspiracy, announced United States Attorney Melinda Haag and Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent in Charge David J. Johnson.  The charges stemmed from a robbery and shooting in a parking lot near the Oakland Airport three days before Christmas in 2013.

Evidence at trial showed that Sleugh, 28, of Oakland, helped arrange a meeting to purchase five pounds of marijuana.  In the early afternoon of December 22, 2013, Sleugh met with Vincent Muzac, 24, of Alameda, in the parking lot of a Walmart store near Hegenberger Road and Interstate 880 in Oakland.  Surveillance video showed Mr. Muzac enter a car where he remained for four minutes before he was robbed and shot.  His body was seen lying on the ground as the car sped away.  A joint investigation by the FBI and the Oakland Police Department revealed that Sleugh was the driver.  The evidence submitted at trial included incriminating text messages, FBI crime scene recreations, and images of Sleugh with the stolen marijuana.  The photographs of Sleugh included a “selfie” taken from Sleugh’s phone two hours after the shooting; in the photograph, Sleugh is pictured in the same passenger seat where Mr. Muzac had just been shot.  On March 27, 2014, Sleugh was indicted in a six-count indictment charging him with conspiracy and attempt to possess with the intent to distribute marijuana, in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 841; robbery affecting interstate commerce, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1951(a); the use of a firearm during a drug trafficking crime or a crime of violence, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 924(c); the use of a firearm during a drug trafficking crime or a crime of violence resulting in murder, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 924 (j); and being a felon in possession of a firearm, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g).

The jury convicted Sleugh of all six counts in the indictment.  The verdict also included a special finding that Sleugh committed first degree murder.  The guilty verdict followed a two-week jury trial before the Honorable Yvonne Gonzalez-Rogers, U.S. District Judge.

Sleugh’s sentencing hearing is scheduled for November 4, 2015, in Oakland before Judge Gonzalez-Rogers.  Sleugh faces up to a life sentence for first degree murder.  Sleugh’s sentence also may include a 10-year prison term for discharging a firearm during a crime of violence or drug-trafficking crime.  Any sentence will be imposed by the court after consideration of the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and the federal statute governing the imposition of a sentence, 18 U.S.C. § 3553.

Assistant United States Attorneys Damali Taylor and Joseph Alioto Jr. prosecuted the case, along with paralegals Patty Lau and Christine Tian.  The prosecution is the result of an investigation led by Special Agent Russ Nimmo of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and detectives Randy Brandwood and Phong Tran of the Oakland Police Department.

Updated July 20, 2015