Steubenville man sentenced in shooting case

STEUBENVILLE – Kinlaw Hendrix, 27, of Steubenville, who was convicted of menacing by stalking and tampering with evidence, was sentenced Tuesday to 30 months in prison by Jefferson County Common Pleas Judge David Henderson.

The jury found Hendrix guilty Thursday of those crimes but acquitted him of felonious assault.

Hendrix was involved in a fight with two men on June 8, 2011, in the parking lot of Maryland Market in the 1400 block of Maryland Avenue. Hendrix left but came back in an SUV, armed with a gun. A man Hendrix was fighting with ran into Maryland Market, with Hendrix following.

Vincetta Tsouris, co-owner of Maryland Market, actually got in front of the armed Hendrix, put a hand on his chest and told him to think about what he was going to do.

Hendrix fired several shots as the vehicle sped from the scene. County Assistant Prosecutor Frank Bruzzese said shots also were fired from the back seat area of the vehicle. He said more shots were fired as the vehicle turned onto Ohio Street.

Bruzzese said the SUV was parked near a home in the 1200 block of Pennsylvania Avenue. City Police, already responding to the area because of the earlier fight, surrounded the home and found the four SUV occupants inside. Bruzzese said officers found firearms used in shooting in duct work in the basement of the house.

Co-defendant Jonathan T. Bray, 22, of Chicago pleaded guilty in November to complicity to felonious assault and tampering with evidence in connection with the incident. He was sentenced by Henderson to 30 months in prison.

Two other people have been charged but they haven’t been served with their indictments.

Bruzzese said Hendrix put several people in danger that night by returning with the gun and then fired shots in the air in a residential neighborhood. He also said officers had to enter the home, knowing the men inside had guns and “weren’t afraid to use them.”

Bruzzese asked Henderson to sentence Hendrix to the maximum of 54 months in prison.

Hendrix’s attorney, R. Aaron Miller, said the facts in the case were the same of Bray’s, who received 30 months in prison. Miller said Tsouris testified at trial that Hendrix never pointed the gun at her or the victim.

Miller asked Henderson to sentence Hendrix to the minimum of 15 months in prison.

Bruzzese said Bray was Hendrix’s “assistant” and Hendrix was the boss. He said Bray voluntarily surrendered to police by coming out of the house before police stormed inside.

“The bullets have got to stop flying in Labelle, and he is the man letting them fly,” Bruzzese said of Hendrix.

Hendrix told Henderson he was intoxicated that night and “was moving faster than thinking.”

“I’m not the man they are trying to describe. I’m not a bad guy, just a little misguided,” he said.

Henderson said a gunshot residue test on Hendrix proved he fired a gun that night. The judge said anytime a person uses a gun, they will get a prison sentence -especially when they are intoxicated.

Miller told Henderson that Hendrix will appeal his conviction.