St. Petersburg Times Online: News of the Tampa Bay area
Place an Ad Calendars Classified Forums Sports Weather
  • School official on paid leave
  • From these 51 battles, a war called the election
  • 'He kept hitting me in the head with the gun,' rape victim says
  • Bay area becomes race's ground zero
  • Two life sentences, daughter's hatred
  • It's a badge & boredom in Belleair
  • Tampa Bay briefs
  • Killer tries again for new trial
  • TV stations not ready to pull Crist's anti-Castor ad
  • Just one family owns up to Pasco school vandalism
  • Teenager guilty of tile setter's murder
  • Church official admits to swindle


    printer version

    Teenager guilty of tile setter's murder

    By Times staff writer

    © St. Petersburg Times, published November 3, 2000

    LARGO -- A 12-member jury convicted a teenager Thursday of first-degree murder in the 1999 fatal shooting of a Honduran tile setter in St. Petersburg.

    Xavier J. Love, 17, now faces the death penalty. Pinellas-Pasco Circuit Judge Nancy Ley set sentencing for Dec. 21. Love also faces two counts of robbery.

    In July 1999, Love was charged in the April 26 slaying of Juan Jose Gonzalez in a home invasion robbery off 34th Street S.

    Love told detectives that he had just gotten off work at Burger King and his friends picked him up. He saw Marquise Jenkins attack Gonzalez, and then Jenkins asked Love to help.

    But Love did not participate, he told detectives. He just stood there and looked. He said that during the struggle, the gun fired. Jenkins also has been charged in the death of Gonzalez.

    Love said he did not get back in the car with his friends. Instead, he said he started walking home until his father picked him up.

    But the 12-member jury did not buy his story. In less than three hours, they found Love guilty.

    After the verdict, Love's aunt cried and said she wants to appeal.

    "The lawyer didn't take up for him," said Lorraine Jackson. She does not believe that Love pulled the trigger, either.

    Back to Tampa Bay area news
    Back to Top

    © 2006 • All Rights Reserved • Tampa Bay Times
    490 First Avenue South • St. Petersburg, FL 33701 • 727-893-8111
    Special Links
    Mary Jo Melone
    Howard Troxler

    From the Times
    local news desks