Alleged gang member sentenced for inmate's death

Haven McKinley Grigsby, 21, plead guilty to engaging in organized criminal activity and aggravated robbery.
November 18, 2011 12:57:44 PM PST
An alleged gang member has been sentenced to 35 years in prison for armed robbery and his involvement in the death of an inmate in the Fort Bend County Jail.

Haven McKinley Grigsby, 21, plead guilty to engaging in organized criminal activity and aggravated robbery. The Mission Bend man was indicted for an armed robbery in 2009 and again in 2010 for his involvement in the death of an inmate in the Ft. Bend Co. Jail.

According to prosecutors, Grigsby was incarcerated in jail in February 2010 on two aggravated robbery charges. A firearm was used during both robberies and at least one crime appeared to be a gang initiation with the defendant recruiting a juvenile gang member. Grigsby, a member of the 'Tree Top Piru' gang, which is a subset of the 'Bloods' gang, connected with other Bloods gang members while in jail.

His 18 year-old victim, Emmanuel Baines, became an inmate in the Ft. Bend Co. Jail in January 2010 after he was arrested for violating his probation on two felony cases. Prosecutors say Baines associated with the defendant and other gang members in jail, claiming he was a member of the same gang.

Grigsby and others tested Baines' knowledge of the gang because to falsely claim gang membership is a serious violation of gang propriety, prosecutors say, and Baines was only able to answer basic questions regarding 'Bloods,' but when it came to the more complicated questions, his answers apparently didn't satisfy the defendant.

According to the state, Grigsby and his fellow gang members determined that Baines must suffer the consequences of their so-called gang violation and the punishment would require Baines to receive 21 blows to the chest while holding a 5-point star gang sign above his head. Baines suffered a dozen punches before he dropped the gang sign which required the punches to start over. After receiving likely more than 35 punches directly to his chest, Baines collapsed and later died after being rushed to the hospital. The official cause of death was blunt force trauma to the chest.

The evidence revealed that Grigsby was directly responsible for at least half of the blows to Baines, prosecutors allege. Grigsby and others were charged with engaging in organized criminal activity, specifically for acting as gang members to commit the offense of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. The state alleged that the deadly weapon in the case was Grigsby's hands.

On the morning of trial, Grigsby accepted 30 years in prison on the engaging in organized criminal activity charge and five years on one of the aggravated robbery charges. The sentences will run concurrently.

Grigsby must serve at least one-half of his sentences before he can be considered for parole.


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