Wicomico County

Jaron Purnell Sentenced to 70-Years for Second Degree Murder and Other Charges

On June 9, 2022, the Honorable Kathleen L. Beckstead, Chief Judge of the Circuit Court for Wicomico County, sentenced Jaron Purnell to Seventy (70) years of incarceration in the Maryland Division of Corrections, five (5) years of which are to be served without the possibility of parole, for the murder of Dondre Wilson and the attempted murder of Adrian Wilson.

On April 7, 2022, after a four (4) day jury trial presided over by Judge Beckstead, Purnell, of Delmar, Maryland, was convicted of one count of Second-Degree Murder, one count of Attempted Second Degree Murder, one count of Firearm Use in a Violent Crime, and one count of Illegal Possession of a Firearm and related charges.

On the night of April 17, 2020, Purnell and others ambushed the victims as they sat in their vehicle at the Merrifield Apartments in Salisbury, firing at least 16 rounds into the victims’ car. The hail of bullets killed the driver of the vehicle and injured a second occupant.

At the time of the offense, Jaron Purnell was prohibited from possessing a firearm due to a prior firearms conviction.

Wicomico County State’s Attorney (SA) Jamie Dykes, who prosecuted the case with Senior Assistant State’s Attorney D. Scott Messersmith, commended the members of the Maryland State Police (MSP) Homicide Unit and the Salisbury Police Department (SPD) for their work in the investigation, specifically thanking MSP D/SGT Kyle Clark and SPD Det. Troy Underwood for their hard work and diligence in this investigation.

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