Alameda County District Attorney's Office
Nancy E. O'Malley, District Attorney

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Jury Reaches Verdict in Penalty Phase of Darnell Williams Murder Trial

Oakland, CA – On June 2, 2016, the jury in the trial of Darnell Williams returned a verdict finding that Williams should receive the death penalty for his conviction of two first degree murders. Sentencing is scheduled for September 21, 2016. At the sentencing hearing, the trial judge will review the evidence and determine whether the evidence supports the jury’s penalty verdict.

On May 6, 2016, the same jury convicted Williams of first degree murder for the killing of eight-year-old Alaysha Carradine and the separate first degree murder of Anthony Medearis. Williams was also convicted of other charges, including attempted murders, assault with a firearm, and being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm.

“This defendant committed the most heinous of crimes. The senseless and brutal slaying of eight-year old Alaysha Carradine and murder of Anthony Medearis will forever devastate their loved-ones. The children who survived the injuries caused by Williams will always live with the memories of the horror he inflicted,” says District Attorney Nancy E. O’Malley. “I hope that with the verdict in this trial, each victim and each family member will have a sense that justice was served and will, in their individual ways, begin to heal from the trauma they have suffered.”

On the evening of July 17, 2013, Williams went to an apartment on Wilson Avenue in Oakland, seeking retaliation for an earlier shooting the same day. Eight-year-old Alaysha Carradine was at the apartment for a sleepover with her seven-year-old friend. Williams rang the doorbell and waited for the children to open the door. As the door opened, Williams fired thirteen shots from a pistol into the apartment. Alaysha Carradine was struck and killed. Two other children and a woman in the apartment were wounded by gunfire. The jury found that the murder was committed intentionally by means of lying in wait, a special circumstance.

On the afternoon of September 8, 2013, Williams attempted to rob Anthony Medearis at gunpoint outside an apartment building on Eighth Street in Berkeley. Mr. Medearis ran away from Williams, yelling for help. Williams chased after Mr. Medearis and fired at him fifteen times. Mr. Medearis was struck by one bullet in the back and died. During the shooting, a seven-year-old child was struck in the face and injured by a bullet fragment. The jury found that the murder was committed during the commission of attempted robbery, a special circumstance. The jury also found that Williams committed multiple murders, a separate special circumstance.

“I am extremely gratified with today’s outcome and would like to thank the jury that worked so diligently to reach a just verdict in this matter, as well as the many law enforcement officers who investigated these crimes,” says prosecutor John Brouhard.


On September 21, 2016, Defendant Darnell Williams was sentenced by Alameda County Superior Court Judge Jeffrey Horner. Three victims read victim impact statements before the court. Judge Horner heard these statements, reviewed the evidence presented in the case, and determined that the evidence supported the jury’s penalty verdict of death.


Posted on Jun 2, 2016