Man guilty of “executing” Rickards High student on victim’s 18th birthday
Investigators said the suspect discussed plans for the murder on Instagram.
LEON COUNTY, Fla. (WCTV) - A Quincy man, who was 17 years old at the time of the killing, was found guilty of shooting and killing a friend in Tallahassee on the victim’s 18th birthday.
Mario D. Sailor, Jr., now 19, was convicted of first-degree murder and armed robbery with a firearm after the jury deliberated for two hours on Friday. He is facing a minimum of 40 years in prison and a maximum of a life sentence. A sentencing date has not yet been set, but a status hearing is scheduled for April 10.
According to court records, the incident took place just after midnight on January 26, 2021, after Sailor met with Jalen Jones at the San Marcos Apartments off Woodville Highway. Sailor allegedly lured Jones to an area behind the Shell Gas Station at the intersection of Capital Circle and Woodville Hwy. under the guise that they would rob someone during a marijuana deal.
However, prosecutors said Sailor had planned to kill Jones all along and had even talked about it with a friend on Instagram before the shooting happened.
Jones was found shot in the back of the head later that morning. It was his 18th birthday. His family gathered at the scene after his body was found and identified the Rickards High School student to WCTV. His family believed he had gone to the business to apply for a job.
A news release from the State Attorney’s Office stated Sailor “executed” Jones from behind while they were walking together on a trail behind the business, and then turned his body over to empty Jones’s pockets and steal his gun, cell phone, and birthday money.
Sailor also reportedly talked about the killing, plans to sell Jones’s gun, and to get rid of Jones’s phone on Instagram after the murder. However, Sailor testified at his trial and claimed he acted in self-defense.
Jones was described as a loving son, brother, and friend.
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