By Dave Oedel
After Andre Bonner, 32, was convicted on May 2, 2015 by a jury in Bibb County, Georgia, of murder and other charges for the 2013 killing at Macon’s Zodiac Lounge of Jamonni Bland, 17, Bibb County Superior Court Judge Howard Simms sentenced Bonner on May 6, 2015 to life without the possibility of parole. Then Simms tacked on 15 years for gang-affiliated charges, plus 5 more for gun possession by a felon. The extra time was largely an idle gesture in Bonner’s case, but was apparently intended to make a meaningful point to those claiming affiliation with the Westside Mafia.
I attended the sentencing hearing, and it was interesting in several ways.
First, there was little to nothing offered in the way of testimonials on behalf either of the victim, Bland, or the defendant, Bonner. Both of them seem to have been largely adrift in their communities.
After hammering the powerful evidence on the basic murder charges, prosecutor Sandra Matson … Continue Reading