MAYS LANDING- Three Pleasantville men pleaded guilty to attempted murder charges on Tuesday, July 2, 2019, for their involvement in a rolling shootout on the Atlantic City Expressway in August 2016, Atlantic County Prosecutor Damon G. Tyner announced.
“This further underscores the brazen violence that we are witnessing in recent incidents. The Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office will continue to pursue and prosecute these offenders to the fullest extent of the law. I would like to personally thank all of our law enforcement partners for their efforts in bringing these individuals to justice,” Prosecutor Tyner said.
On July 2, 2019, Wilbert Demosthenes, 28, Anthony Hicks, 27, and 23 year-old Devan Leggette pleaded guilty to first degree Attempted Murder for their roles in the August 29, 2016 rolling shootout at the entrance of the Atlantic City Expressway milepost 11.3 eastbound. Sentencing is scheduled for Aug. 8, 2019.
“This is a significant prosecution for the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office that will ensure the safety of all residents and visitors to Atlantic County and alike. The reality that these reckless and irresponsible individuals through their gun-play would jeopardize their lives and the lives of anyone utilizing the Atlantic City Expressway is absolutely outrageous. Not only did they kill a passenger in their vehicle, but they put anyone’s life in jeopardy that happened to be traveling on that day,” said Atlantic County Prosecutor Damon G. Tyner.
Witnesses to the incident stated that shots were fired between a gold Nissan Maxima driven by Hicks and occupied by Rosemond Octavius and a white Ford Expedition beginning at approximately 2:55 p.m. A black Dodge Ram 1500 pickup truck driven by Leggette and occupied by Demosthenes emerged from the far right entrance ramp and pinned the Expedition in between the Dodge and Maxima. Leggette and Demosthenes began shooting into the right side of the Expedition hitting all four occupants of the vehicle.
After the shootout, the white Ford Expedition got off at Exit 9 and eventually stopped in the parking lot of the Wawa convenience store at the Airport Circle in Egg Harbor Township. The four occupants of the Ford Expedition were identified as Yahshaun Stukes-Williams, Shaun Stukes, Lenardo Caro, and a juvenile at the time with the initials M.T.
The gold Nissan Maxima got off at Exit 7N and eventually stopped on the Garden State Parkway after losing its front left wheel. The occupants of the gold Nissan Maxima were Hicks and Octavius, who was deceased in the front passenger seat with gunshot wounds to the head and neck area. The black Dodge Ram got off at Exit 5 in Pleasantville and was eventually located on the side of a house located at 226 E. Oakland Avenue, Pleasantville.
This investigation was a joint effort between the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crimes Unit, the New Jersey State Police, the Egg Harbor Township Police Department, the Pleasantville Police Department and the Atlantic City Police Department.
Chief Assistant Prosecutor Erik Bergman and Assistant Prosecutor Erika Halayko represent the state in this matter.
Anyone with information involving serious crimes is asked to call the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office at 609-909-7800 or go to the Prosecutor’s Office Web site at http://www.acpo.org/tips.html and provide information by filling out the form anonymously on the Submit a Tip page. People can also call Crime Stoppers at 609-652-1234 or 1-800-658-8477 (TIPS) or visit the Crime Stoppers Website at http://www.crimestoppersatlantic.com/. Crime Stoppers offers cash rewards for information leading to the arrest and indictment of those who commit crimes in Atlantic County.