Lee convicted in White Castle murder

DEIDRE CRUSE, Governmental Reporter

A 12-member jury last week found Kaderius Lee, 21, of Baton Rouge guilty of second degree murder in the November 2007 shooting death of 19-year-old Alexander Lewis, District Attorney Richard J. “Ricky” Ward Jr. reported.

Ward noted it was the second murder conviction his office secured in as many weeks.

After two days of trial, the jury deliberated for two hours and seven minutes before reaching the guilty verdict.

District Judge William C. Dupont, who presided at the trial, scheduled Lee for sentencing at 10 a.m. June 4.

Lee, whose address was listed as 367 Taft Street, Baton Rouge, was arrested November 15, 2007, in Lewis' death. At the time, witnesses said Lee and Lewis had been feuding over a girl, according to Chief Criminal Deputy Stephen Engolio of the Iberville Sheriff's Office.

Two high school girls found Lewis' body in the yard of their home on Cypress Street in White Castle on the morning of November 2008, according to White Castle Police Chief Mario Brown.

The girls' mother said she heard a gunshot around 10:30 or 11 p.m. the night before and heard moaning near her windows, but never called police, Brown said.

Late last month, another jury found deliberated for just over three hours Friday before finding Wendell Wesley, 22, of Bayou Goula guilty in the 2007 shooting death of his neighbor, James Bethley, 41. District Judge Alvin Batiste set sentencing for May 11.

Both defendants face mandatory life sentences after being found guilty of second-degree murder, the district attorney said.