Murder or self-defense the question in Lake County trial

  • Willie C. Jackson

    Willie C. Jackson

Updated 5/8/2019 4:44 PM

A Lake County jury will decide whether the 2016 killing of a teenager shot by a man with an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle was self-defense or murder.

Willie C. Jackson, 20, of Waukegan faces two counts of first-degree murder in the shooting of Dayviontay T. Jackson, 17, who was gunned down Nov. 11, 2016, after an argument on the 400 block of McKinley Avenue in Waukegan.


During opening statements in Jackson's trial Wednesday, Assistant Lake County State's Attorney Danielle Pascucci said Dayviontay Jackson and Willie Jackson, who were not related, were looking at guns in the home when an argument erupted.

As the confrontation escalated, Willie Jackson pointed the loaded AR-15 at Dayviontay Jackson and pulled the trigger "not once, not twice, not three times, but 10 times," Pascucci said.

But defense attorney John Radosevich said the gunfire occurred after the two fought over the weapon when their argument turned physical. During the scuffle, Dayviontay Jackson grabbed the barrel of the weapon and tried to pull it out of Willie Jackson's hand, causing him to pull the trigger, Radosevich said.

After the first bullet grazed Dayviontay Jackson, Radosevich said, he rushed Willie Jackson, causing him to fire nine more shots.

Willie Jackson fled after the shooting but was captured by police two months later in Tennessee. He has been held in Lake County jail on $3 million bail since.

The trial is expected to last until next week.

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