Investigators recorded accused gunman bragging about Tyshawn Lee murder
Alleged killer Dwright Boone-Doty detailed killing of 9-year-old in conversations with a jail inmate who was wearing a wire.
In the weeks after Tyshawn Lee’s murder, Dwright Boone-Doty was eager to boast —and even rap — about allegedly shooting the 9-year-old as he chatted up a hulking, high-ranking gang member inside the Cook County Jail, prosecutors said Monday as Doty’s murder trial opened it’s third week.
And although in the fall of 2015, Boone-Doty allegedly professed that he had no remorse about killing the 9-year-old, on Monday he surely regretted opening his mouth as his former confidant took the stand as the star witness for the prosecution.
Demetrius Murray was purportedly the second-highest-ranking member of a Gangster Disciples faction when he first met Boone-Doty in Cook County Jail while Murray was awaiting trial for a shooting and Boone-Doty was jailed on a gun case. After a jury found Murray guilty in his case that December, he reached out to jail officials and offered to tell them that Boone-Doty was bragging about Tyshawn’s murder.
Murray admitted that when he offered to help, he was hoping for a lighter sentence on his aggravated battery case but was also appalled by what he’d heard from Boone-Doty.
“My other motivation was that, like, a person that brags about things like that, it don’t add up to me,” said Murray, at times bending his 6-foot, 5-inch, 300-pound frame to voice his answers into the microphone. “It ain’t right.”
Murray got a 10-year prison sentence for his shooting case. Boone-Doty, who had been at the jail on an unrelated gun charge, was charged in March with first-degree murder after Murray testified before a grand jury. Murray had been outfitted with a recorder shaped like a USB drive, and recorded several conversations with Boone-Doty that January.
Murray’s three hours on the stand —and about an hour of noisy, almost unintelligible recordings from the jailhouse — provided the most damning evidence against Boone-Doty, who sat in the courtroom without co-defendant Corey Morgan for the afternoon. Separate juries are hearing evidence against the two defendants, and Morgan’s jurors were not present to hear Murray’s testimony. Prosecutors allege that Boone-Doty lured Tyshawn from a park near the boy’s home and shot him multiple times in an alley, a killing planned in revenge for the death of Morgan’s brother, who was killed two weeks earlier by members of a gang that counted Tyshawn’s father as a leader.
In one recorded conversation, Boone-Doty described hanging out at Dawes Park with his “rappies” —co-defendants — Morgan and co-defendant Kevin Edwards the afternoon of Nov. 2, 2015. After spotting Tyshawn at the park alone, the trio had planned to kidnap the boy and torture him. But Boone-Doty said Morgan and Edwards went back to their car, leaving him at the park alone with the boy. Boone-Doty said he began dribbling Tyshawn’s basketball to get the boy to come over to him.
“I don’t know what they thinking in their head,” Boone-Doty said. “I’m thinking in my head, ‘I gotta get this b—h off the side. F—k this.’ I take the ball,” Boone-Doty said.
Boone-Doty said he offered to buy Tyshawn whatever he wanted from a store, then walked with him toward a nearby alley when he couldn’t spot the SUV he’d been riding in with Edwards and Morgan.
“I’m looking at him. We walking. Bop. Hit the ground. Bop-bop-bop-bop-bop. I’m laughing. I’m looking ... Bop bop bop bop bop man,” Boone-Doty said.
In another conversation, Boone-Doty added more details, describing the caliber of the murder weapon he used to kill Tyshawn, whom he referred to as “shorty,” slang for a young child.
“Dude, because I had the .40. I had like 15 shots and I hit shorty (Tyshawn) like 12 times,” he said. “He so little. The (bullets) are coming out. I see that b—h go in his head. Boom! That bitch came out, right here, like.”
Boone-Doty’s lawyer, Assistant Public Defender Danita Ivory noted that her client’s boasting didn’t always match up with the facts: He’d described Morgan’s brother and mother as his own, and investigators found only seven shell casings at the scene, and the boy was hit only twice.
Ivory has argued that Boone-Doty was just making tasteless boasts to appear tougher to other inmates, and pointed out Monday that Murray was a VIP inside the jail, both physically imposing and a high-ranking gang member, while Boone-Doty was nearly a foot shorter and roughly half Murray’s weight.
“People say a lot of things, don’t they?” Ivory asked Murray on cross-examination.
“When certain people do things, they always add on extra stuff to it,” Murray replied.
In several conversations, Murray said he asked Boone-Doty if he was troubled by what he had done to Tyshawn, and each time, Boone-Doty said the retaliation was justified after a shooting by rival Gangster Disciples that had killed Morgan’s brother and left Morgan’s mother wounded.
“So tell me this, though. This is some real s—t. You don’t feel no type of way about killing that kid?” Murray asked.
“They killed my brother ... that feelings (of guilt) is for shit,” Boone-Doty said. “You got to be in this s—t all the way or not be in this s—t at all.”