The Murder of Junior Boy

The Murder of Junior Boy
Crime Behind the Pine Curtain

 
 
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Jackie Welch (in front) and Kevin Wright are led out of the Polk County courthouse in July 2007 after being convicted of the murder of Clayton Junior Jones.
ENTERPRISE ARCHIVE PHOTO / VALERIE REDDELL

On Saturday, May 13, 2006, Kevin Rashawn Wright of Houston noticed he had missed a call from his sister, Angela.

He called Angela and soon learned that Angela’s boyfriend, Clayton “Junior Boy” Jones, had physically assaulted her during an argument.

He planned to visit family in Livingston that day. During a trip to the store before his departure, Wright saw a friend Jackie Welch who was more commonly known as D Black.

Kevin told D Black about the fight and that he was “going to the country” to see his mother for Mother’s Day. Welch asked to go too because he wanted to go to the country to shoot his pistol.

Angela picked up Welch and Wright at Wright’s Houston apartment that afternoon. Wright saw bruises and bite marks that Angela said occurred during the fight.

Angela drove the two men to her mother’s house, then Wright and Welch drove to the West End.

As they rolled through the neighborhood, Welch asked Wright what he was doing.

Wright said he was looking for Angela’s boyfriends, that he wanted to have words with him or “knock out a tooth or two.”

While driving, Wright saw Junior Boy huddled with several other people and so appellant deicded not to stop.

Wright and Welch went to Wright’s grandfather’s house and both shot Welch’s gun into the woods.

Welch ran out of bullets and they attempted to purchase more at Wal-Mart, but were turned away because they did not have a valid ID.

Wright called his cousin Reginald who went with them to purchase bullets for them.

After the shopping trip, Welch shot the gun in the backyard of Wright’s mother’s house.

Kevin Wright, his sister Angela, Reginald and a couple of children visited on the porch and in the front yard.

Jones drove up, walked up to the porch and began arguing with Angela.

Welch moved to the back seat of the car.

As Jones walked off the porch, he threated to come back and “set it off.”

Wright started to follow Jones.

Welch and Jones exchanged words and Welch shot Jones several times.

Wright said he had no idea Welch would shoot Jones.

In a video statement to police, Wright said he saw Jones take his last breath.

He dragged Junior Boy over close to the ditch across the street. Then he and Welch drove back to Houston.

During the drive D Black said, “I did it for you man”

When they arrived back at Wright’s Houston apartment, Welch got out, taking his backpack and gun with him.

Prosecutor Joe Martin also called Reginald as a witness. His testimony corroborated Wright’s video statements.

He also played Welch’s video statement, but Judge Robert Hill Trapp instructed the jury that D Black’s statement could not be considered as evidence to connect Wright to the offense.

This is where today’s guest enters the story.

At about 4:45 a.m. Deputy William Jerry was dispatched to Wiggins Village I where a caller reported a “drunk guy in a ditch.”

13 years later, Jerry doesn’t have any trouble remembering what happened next.

Junior Boy goes to Houston for an autopsy.

Investigators also collect 9 shell casings from a 9 mm gun, off to the side of the porch.

In the appeal, Justice David Gaultney notes that in addition to the gunshot wound, Jones had a broken arm, small abrasions and swelling and brusing around his right eye.

The Medical Examiner determined Jones sustained 7 gunshot wounds that caused his death.

Wright appealed on the grounds that the state failed to prove that he participated as a party to the murder.

Under the law of parties, a jury can convict someone is they were “acting with intent to promote or assist in the commission of the offense”that includes anyone who solicits, encourages, directs, aids, or attempts to aid the other person to commit the offense.”

The law also holds that participation may be inferred from circumstances, and need not be shown by direct evidence.

The appeals court looked to Reginald’s testimony .

Reginald told the jury he heard at least six shots from the 9 mm.

He saw Jones fall to the ground.

Reginald identified Welch as the shooter and Welch admitted shooting Jones.

The medical examiner testified that at least one of the gunshots would have been fairly instantly fatal.

She also explained the broken arm as having occurred when Jones’ body was being removed from the crime scene.

Jones’ body was muscular and in a full state of rigor mortis when funeral home staff was attempting to put Jones in a body bag.

The black eye was consistent with a fight having occurred the night before the shooting, she added.

Wright was found guilty of murder and sentenced to 50 years in prison and is currently being held at the Coffield Unit in Northeast Texas.

He becomes eligible for parole Jan. 12, 2032.

Welch’s appeal focuses on the trial court’s refusal to admit evidence purporting to represent the deceased’s known violent character.

D Black is serving 40 years at the Stringfellow Unit in Rosharon.

He could become eligible for parole in October 2026.

Valerie’s trial coverage

Appeal upheld

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