NEW BOSTON, Texas–A Bowie County jury returned a guilty verdict late Friday afternoon in the capital murder trial of a Texarkana teen accused of fatally shooting two 18-year-old men in December 2021.
Kevonte Collins, 18, was nearing his seventeenth birthday when he shot and killed DeAngelo Handy and Rickalon Young at a house in the 1900 block of W. 13th St. in Texarkana, Texas, on Dec. 13, 2021, court records show. A third shooting victim, 17, was found in the yard suffering from multiple gunshot wounds, including one to his neck, but survived, according to a probable cause affidavit.
A jury was selected in the case Tuesday, testimony began Wednesday and Collins was found guilty shortly after 5 p.m. Friday. Because of his age, 16, at the time of the murders, Collins was ineligible for the death penalty. Fifth District Judge Bill Miller imposed an automatic sentence of life in prison. Because he was under the age of 18 when he killed Handy and Young, Collins will be eligible for parole after 40 years, according to Texas law.
Police responded to the shooting scene around 5 p.m. after callers reported seeing the wounded 17-year-old bleeding near 13th St. where he was trying to wave down a car.
He was treated at a Texarkana hospital before being airlifted to Children’s Hospital in Little Rock, according to a May 2022 press statement from the Texarkana Texas Police Dept.
Inside the house, officers found Handy deceased upstairs. Young was found downstairs and taken to a local hospital where he later died.
Collins, who had been seen running from the house with a long gun and an extended magazine, was quickly identified as a suspect in the shooting. Another witness told investigators that Collins believed Young, Handy and the injured 17-year-old had set him up to be robbed.
He was arrested in DeSoto, Texas, on May 1 and has been in custody since.
Assistant District Attorney Katie Carter represented the state. Collins was represented by Texarkana lawyer Josh Potter, who was serving through a court appointment.