WARREN — Devonte Douglas had little to say after pleading guilty Wednesday to three felonies in the death of a 22-year-old Youngstown woman, whose body was found in December in a vehicle near a gas well off Lewis-Seifert Road in Hubbard Township.
In fact, when asked by Judge W. Wyatt McKay of Trumbull County Common Pleas Court if he had anything to say before sentencing, Douglas, 26, and his attorney, Carlo Ciccone, remained silent. McKay then sentenced him to a life prison term with the first chance at parole after 26 years.
Douglas, of 1471 Dogwood Lane, Youngstown, was charged in the shooting death of Adreionna Faith Hasley-Crockett, 22, 1324 Dogwood Lane, Youngstown. Douglas pleaded guilty to charges of aggravated murder with a firearm specification, tampering with evidence and abduction.
The plea and sentencing Wednesday headed off a jury trial for Douglas that was scheduled to begin Oct. 24 in McKay’s court
The gun specification added three years before Douglas’ parole eligibility, while McKay said the conduct of the defendant as well as the seriousness of the crime contributed to another consecutive sentence that added three more years for the tampering and abduction convictions. Douglas also will have to register as a violent offender if he ever is released from prison.
Hasley-Crockett’s body was found Dec. 13, 2021, in a vehicle parked in a pull-off near Seifert Lewis Road.
Another terrified woman told Trumbull County 911 dispatchers that her ex-boyfriend held a gun to her head and forced her into the trunk of a vehicle, before killing the woman’s girlfriend, according to 911 recordings.
Hasley-Crockett died of multiple gunshot wounds, according to a coroner’s report.
While Douglas was silent in court, two people spoke on behalf of the victims in the case. Seven people representing the victims were let into the courtroom to watch the hearing.
The woman who called 911 that day — Judith Britton, who also is the mother of Douglas’ son, addressed the court. Britton said the defendant’s actions caused “very traumatic events” to her life.
“I had to uproot my son to a life of moving around to make sure we were safe,” Britton read from a prepared statement. “I go through very painful flashbacks every day from the kidnapping to the discovery of how you left a very important person in my life. I will never forgive you for breaking what was left of my heart and taking away a precious life that was meant to be here and be happy.”
Britton also chastised the defendant for having no sympathy, especially to the five children — including Douglas’ other children and Hasley-Crockett’s daughter — who “now suffer from losses that they can never get back.”
Britton said her child is in danger because “if someone wants to hurt me, they can hurt him.”
The woman said she hoped the judge would give Douglas a life term.
“In my personal opinion, you should never have any freedom since you took her chance to have a future. .. You should never have the luxury of living life outside of those prison walls. I hope you die in there remembering what you did and reflecting on the decisions you made that day,” Britton told Douglas.
Also making a statement was Hasley-Crockett’s friend, Angel Whitted.
“This tragedy has hit us so hard that mere words can’t describe it,” Whitted said, noting she thought Douglas deserved the death penalty.
The case did not meet the criteria for capital offenses, court officials said.
If the case had gone to trial, assistant Prosecutor Christopher Becker said evidence would have included testimony from Britton and video from various doorbell cameras that caught the defendant’s movements that day.
Becker said Douglas forced Britton to text the victim to come to the Hubbard Township location. He then put Britton in the trunk of a vehicle while he shot Hasley-Crockett. He then returned Britton to Youngstown, Becker said.
Douglas was arrested later that day after the body was found, and he went to the Youngstown Police Department to pick up a towed vehicle.
The case was investigated by Hubbard Township police and the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation.