Verdict returned in murders of Delaware TikTok star and another young entrepreneur (2024)

A New Castle County jury on Thursday convicted a man of murdering a Delaware teen TikTok star and another young Wilmington entrepreneur in 2021.

The jury found Israel Lecompte guilty of two counts of first-degree murder for the summer 2021 deaths of 22-year-old Quinton Dorsey and 19-year-old Matima Miller, two young men cut down as they were finding success in life.

Dorsey was building a following as a clothing designer and entrepreneur under his Bag Season brand. Miller was known online as Swavy on TikTok, where millions of followers watched him style and a dance around the city and beyond.

Lecompte, 20, was also convicted of a slew of other charges related to a nonfatal shooting and multiple robberies during the same summer, crimes prosecutors said related to a violent teen gang that has seen several other young men murdered and others sentenced to life in prison.

Lecompte is currently imprisoned on a separate 27-year sentence after pleading guilty to second-degree murder for another 2021 fatal shooting.

He had just turned 18 years old when Miller and Dorsey were murdered so his first-degree murder conviction mandates a life sentence without chance of parole. He was convicted after three weeks of trial testimony in Wilmington.

Wilmington gang feud

Prosecutors told the jury that Lecompte'smotive for killing the young men was tied to a gang feud involving youths in the city.

A month before the shootings, prosecutors indicted dozens of young men, accusing them of felony gang participation in the NorthPak gang as well as a slew of other crimes including murders.Over numerous trials, prosecutors have said NorthPak's feud with other groups of young friends in the city was the motive for multiple killings of young men in the city around that time.

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Citing testimony from a state gang expert as well as young men who had been charged with crimes tied to the gangs, prosecutors have said the groups largely exist to taunt and harm other affiliated teens in the city and build a reputation on social media. Deputy Attorney General Anthony Hill told the jury both Dorsey and Miller were killed not as members of a rival gang, but by association.

With several of his gang associates imprisoned by the May 2021 NorthPak indictment, prosecutors told the jury that Lecompte wanted to keep NorthPak "on the offense."

The trial focused on a series of crimes starting with a spray of gunfire in a north Wilmington park on June 9. The targets were associates of a rival gang in the wrong territory, but instead, bullets wounded a 12- and 16-year-old, Hill said.

Evidence in that shooting highlighted by prosecutors primarily consisted of victims identifying Lecompte as the shooter.

Stolen car leads to suspect

Much of the evidence prosecutors emphasized to the jury Monday involved the theft of multiple cars, including one that witnesses told the jury they spotted at both the Dorsey and Miller murders.

Prosecutors said a woman in New Castle had her car stolen on June 30. It was out of gas and had an ignition lock that activated after the carjacker parked it at a Wawa in Claymont.

During closing statements, prosecutors showed surveillance video from inside the gas station that they said showed Lecompte purchasing fuel with his Apple Pay app. Outside, the car wouldn't start. Surveillancefootage showed a man prosecutors said was Lecompte leading others toward a nearby housing development where another car was stolen by threat of force.

That car was later found in Philadelphia in the same lot where a black Nissan Maxima was stolen the following day. Prosecutors said the car had distinctive black rims, window tint and a rear spoiler.

They'd eventually discover a digital record showing that Lecompte's phone connected to a Nissan's audio system minutes after the black Nissan Maxima was stolen. Investigators also found his fingerprints on the car when it was recovered.

The owner of the car also identified it in surveillance footage recorded near the time and location of both the Dorsey and Miller murders, prosecutors told the jury.

'I will never forget that'

Witnesses said it was a black Nissan that parked near the home where Dorsey was shot multiple times in front of his grandparents and other family members July 2 on Lombard Street in Wilmington.

Verdict returned in murders of Delaware TikTok star and another young entrepreneur (2)

His grandmother told police she looked the killer in the eyes and identified Lecompte from a photo lineup two hours after the shooting, prosecutors told the jury. She told police that her grandson made note of her presence before he was killed and the shooter told him: "F*** your grandma."

"I will never forget that," the woman said in a recorded police interview played for the jury.

Bag Season: After a life of struggles, Quinton Dorsey was finally making it. A bullet took it all away

Prosecutors highlighted the statement arguing that it corroborated testimony by at least one gang member witness. The trial featured testimony or police statements by multiple NorthPak members as well as a member of a rival gang.

Discussing evidence in the Dorsey killing, prosecutors highlighted three witnesses who were Lecompte'sassociates and told authorities that he bragged to them about the killing.At least one was able to detail the interaction regarding Dorsey's grandmother from Lecompte's retelling, according to prosecutors' statements to the jury.

'He wasn't an opp'

Prosecutors allege that Lecompte robbed two people, including a 12-year-old of socks, days after the Dorsey killing and one day before Miller was killed. Surveillance video from the first robberyshows the suspect wearing a red-and-black hoodie.

The 12-year-old told authorities the man who robbed him was in a black car and wearing a red hoodie.

Prosecutors said Lecompte was seen wearing a red Bag Season hoodie in an Instagram Live post the day of the robberies as well as in a photo taken that day and later recovered from his phone. Bag Season is the brand Dorsey founded.

Prosecutors said a relative of the child went looking for Lecompte immediately after and found him, Lecompte fired shots, but nobody was hurt. Prosecutors said the shell casings from gunshots fired that day forensically match those that had killed Dorsey days before.Witnesses also spotted the black Nissan fleeing the scene.

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Then, the black Nissan was again captured by surveillance footage near the scene of Miller's murder in Wilmington's Southbridge neighborhood, prosecutors told the jury.

Hill, the prosecutor, told the jury Miller was carrying McDonald's breakfast, returning home alongside his best friend when he was "executed." His friend told authorities that the killer again shot Miller while he was on the ground.

"He wasn't part of the gang war," Hill told the jury. "He was a teenager who liked to film videos of himself dancing."

Verdict returned in murders of Delaware TikTok star and another young entrepreneur (3)

Hill said Miller was killed through his association with Dorsey. Miller's friend told authorities the killer was wearing a red Bag Season hoodie and fled in a black car.

Later that day, Miller's friend would forward an Instagram photo depicting Lecompte to Miller's brother, identifying him as the shooter. He would also later pick Lecompte out of a police photo lineup.

Hill told the jury that gang associates also relayed incriminating conversations regarding the killing.

Afterward, the black car was recovered near Claymont and prosecutors said Lecompte and an associate stole a red Chrysler sedan. Driving that car, Lecompte and others unsuccessfully fired on rival gang members in Wilmington. Later, Lecompte crashed the car during a police chase, leaving his phone inside. He was arrested later that month.

Prosecutors also cited evidence pulled from the cell phone including text messages they interpreted as him bragging about some of the crimes.

Defense points to discrepancies

Adam Windett, Lecompte'sattorney, implored the jury not to take others' conclusions as their own and thoroughly evaluate the evidence, telling them there is "reasonable doubt" in the state's evidence.

He emphasized discrepancies in witness statements and the actual evidence.

He noted some witnesses didn't immediately identify Lecompte and also admitted that they had conducted research on social media regarding the killings. Others said they had read news of the killings and heard things from the neighborhood.

He used the statement by Dorsey's grandmother as an example, arguing that she didn't tell police about scars she noticed on Lecompte's eyebrows until later in the investigation.

Windett said the state's gang expert also misidentified an individual depicted in an Instagram photo during his own testimony, using that as an example of "how easy" it is to misidentify someone.

He also questioned the credibility of witnesses who said Lecompte bragged about the crimes. He noted that some of those witnesses were facing the potential of long prison sentences when they agreed to help prosecutors and have since benefited from their cooperation.

Lecompte will be sentenced later this year.

ContactXerxes Wilsonat (302) 324-2787 or xwilson@delawareonline.com.

Verdict returned in murders of Delaware TikTok star and another young entrepreneur (2024)
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