17-year-old found guilty in Middlesex County homicide

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MIDDLESEX COUNTY, Va. (WAVY) – A 17-year-old boy has been found guilty in connection with a homicide that left an 18-year-old dead in March.

Tariq Joel Beane, of Lancaster County, was found guilty of second-degree murder and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony after a three-day jury trial, which ended Thursday, according to court records.

The 17-year-old’s sentencing is scheduled for Feb. 5.

Beane was originally charged with first-degree murder in connection with the March death of 18-year-old Elijah Baker.

The Middlesex County Sheriff’s Office said the homicide happened after a group of people from Lancaster County showed up to a party on General Puller Highway on March 23.

While at the party, a person in the uninvited group began to pass around a handgun to others in the group. Witnesses said a member of the group got into a verbal altercation with Baker, then other members of the group attacked him.

Baker and the group were in the house at the time. Baker escaped after he got into a room and climbed out a window.

The group followed Baker outside to a truck and fired shots at him.

Baker’s family was later notified by a doctor that he died.

Beane was one of five people charged in Baker’s death. Prosecutors dropped a first-degree murder charge against Kemonte Smith in May in connection with the case. It’s unclear why the charge was dropped.

Three other juveniles were charged with first-degree murder by mob in the homicide.

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