Crime

Hit man in Boise double murders given life without parole

John C. Douglas speaks with defense attorney Jack McMahon during a court hearing last year.
John C. Douglas speaks with defense attorney Jack McMahon during a court hearing last year. kjones@idahostatesman.com

John C. Douglas, the Pennsylvania man hired to knock off two Boise men after they stole $100,000 worth of marijuana, will spend the rest of his life in prison.

Ada County District Judge Samuel Hoagland handed down the sentence Monday afternoon before summing up for Douglas his thoughts on the May 2014 killings of Travontae Calloway and Elliott Bailey.

“This was essentially a cold-blooded, premeditated execution of two people,” Hoagland said.

Douglas was convicted in January along with drug dealer and part-time Boise resident Anthony Robins Jr., who hired Douglas to fly to Idaho and shoot the two men to death at Calloway’s apartment on South Orchard Street. Robins, 36, arranged for the hit to take place on Calloway’s 27th birthday. Calloway and Bailey, 28, were celebrating along with Calloway’s girlfriend, Jeanette Juraska, who was also shot and survived.

Deputy Ada County Prosecutor Shelley Akamatsu praised Boise police detectives for finding ties between Douglas, Robins and others involved in the case.

“It was the Boise Police Department’s relentless investigation that solved this,” Akamatsu said following the sentencing hearing.

Defense attorney Jack McMahon, complimented Akamatsu and police for how they handled the case.

“The police investigation was extraordinary. The detectives and investigators should be proud of themselves,” said McMahon, who spent eight years in the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office prosecuting murders before turning to defense work. In most cases, McMahon said, the defense can find a hole where the prosecution isn’t able to prove important elements in the case. That didn’t happen here, he said.

“Shelley did a phenomenal job,” McMahon said. “We did the best with what we had.”

No decision has been made on whether to appeal the jury’s conviction of Douglas or the sentence.

“That’s up to John. I’ll talk with him about that,” McMahon said.

Douglas was convicted of two counts of first-degree murder and one charge of attempted first-degree murder. Robins was convicted of two counts of aiding and abetting first-degree murder and aiding and abetting attempted first-degree murder.

Robins and another co-defendant, Samari P. Winn, 35, were sentenced in June to 40 years to life for aiding and abetting first-degree murder and attempted first-degree murder.

Calloway and Bailey reportedly stole 30 pounds of marijuana that belonged to Robins on Halloween night 2013 from a West Boise home where Winn resided and Robins had a room when he came to town.

Another roommate, Anton Raider, 22, supplied the gun used in the killings and let Robins borrow his van to drive Douglas and Winn to the murder scene. Raider pleaded guilty last year to a state charge of aiding and abetting murder and a federal charge of possessing firearms in furtherance of a drug crime. He was sentenced to five years in prison.

John Sowell: 208-377-6423, @IDS_Sowell

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