Tacoma man sentenced to 37 years in fatal 2011 shooting

Staff writerJune 14, 2013 

Anthony Clark was sentenced Friday to 37 years in prison for killing Devondre Davis.

ADAM LYNN — Staff writer

Angel Davis barely could contain her fury Friday in a Pierce County courtroom.

Barely 10 feet away sat Anthony Tyrone Clark, the man who shot her beloved nephew, Devondre Davis, to death almost two years ago, rifled the 16-year-old’s pockets for drugs and then stuffed his body into a garbage can.

Angel Davis, at times trembling, told Superior Court Judge Kathryn Nelson it was all she could do to keep from jumping over the defense table and choking the life out of Clark.

“It’s so hard for me to understand how somebody could shove that baby into a trash can,” Davis said before turning to Clark. “You’re evil … evil.”

Clark on Friday learned the cost for killing a boy he once called friend: 37 years, three months in prison.

The sentence was less than deputy prosecutor Fred Wist asked for but more than defense attorney Richard Whitehead requested.

It clearly was not enough for Angel Davis.

“There is not enough time in the world because Devondre is dead,” she said.

A jury in April convicted Clark, 22, of first-degree murder, first-degree robbery, unlawful possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver and unlawful possession of a firearm in the Sept. 7, 2011, shooting, which occurred inside a Tacoma apartment.

Prosecutors argued Clark intentionally killed Davis for his drugs. Defense attorneys said Clark accidentally shot Davis while holding the teen’s gun as the victim rummaged through a closet. Clark has a low IQ and learning disabilities, they argued. The jury sided with prosecutors.

On Friday, Wist asked for a sentence of 40 years.

The defendant, Wist told Nelson, treated Davis “like a common piece of trash,” and took steps to try to cover his tracks after the killing, including stashing the drugs and gun in a toilet tank inside his apartment and attempting to clean up the blood.

“The jury rejected the defense theory of accident,” Wist said.

Whitehead asked for a sentence of 33 years, saying Clark’s disabilities impaired his judgment the day of the killing. Clark’s entire school career was spent in special education classes, Whitehead said.

Given his chance to speak, Clark apologized to Davis’ family and his own, and stuck to the story that he accidentally shot Davis.

“Devondre was my friend, and I didn’t intentionally kill him,” Clark said. “I will live with the pain in my heart for what happened for the rest of my life. I’m truly sorry.”

One of Davis’ relatives responded with a profanity.

The judge then meted out her sentence, and corrections officers led Clark away.

Adam Lynn: 253-597-8644

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