On September 15, 2021, a jury found Christian Kelling, 24,of Fremont, guilty of the second-degree murder of a 17-year-old Damani Chadly.

On December 4, 2018 at approximately 11 P.M. the two victims met the defendant in Fremont to engage in a transaction for four ounces of marijuana for $400.00. The victims contacted the defendant through Snapchat and had planned to pay for the marijuana with counterfeit bills. After the sale was made, and as the victims were driving away, the defendant discovered the bills were counterfeit.

He then pulled out a 9mm semi-automatic firearm and exited his car, and shot at the victims fleeing car five times as it passed him, striking and killing Damani Chadly who was sitting in the front passenger seat. Robert Johnston, the driver, was struck twice with gunfire-- on his right hand and left arm. Johnson tried to flee, but crashed the car he was driving into a nearby home when he realized he had been shot twice. He then ran away on foot, fearful that the defendant would return to shoot him again.

The defendant was identified and fled to family in Texas, where he was arrested.

Damani attended Cal High School in San Ramon and was active in Youth Radio in Oakland.

The jury also found the defendant guilty of shooing at an occupied vehicle and use of a firearm. He was found not guilty of attempted murder.

DDA Matthew Gaidos prosecuted the case, with aid from Victim Witness Advocate Jennifer Mello and Inspector Randy Brandwood. The defendant is expected to be sentenced on November 19.

Posted on Sep 16, 2021