- Associated Press - Friday, October 9, 2015

DENVER (AP) - A Denver jury has acquitted a prominent anti-gang activist of attempted murder in a shooting that involved gang ties.

Terrance Roberts, 39, had been charged with shooting 22-year-old Hasan Jones five times before a peace rally Roberts had organized in September 2013. Roberts was acquitted Friday, The Denver Post reported (https://dpo.st/1VJQoJc ).

A charge of possession of a weapon by a previous offender was dismissed.

Roberts was known for leaving the Bloods street gang and working to end street violence before the shooting in front of a Boys & Girls Club. He had even counseled Jones, who was a Bloods member, the Post reported.

Prosecutors argued that the shooting was motivated by Roberts’ anger with Jones, who he believed had disrespected him.

Roberts insisted at trial that he shot Jones in self-defense - and that he feared for his safety at the time after Bloods members accused him of being a snitch.

Witnesses testified that Roberts fired a 9-millimeter handgun as Jones was turning away from him and kept shooting. Roberts also tossed a folding knife onto Jones’ body.

Jones refused to testify in the case. He is being held in Arapahoe County jail for the August 2014 death of his girlfriend’s 2-year-old daughter.

“I’ve been saying for two years that I did not shoot Hasan for no reason,” Roberts said outside the courtroom. “Why would I want to shoot a young man?”

“Thank you guys,” Robert yelled to jurors as they were escorted from the courtroom. He also said he wished the best for Jones and Jones’ family.

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Information from: The Denver Post, https://www.denverpost.com


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