NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — D’Quan Melvin, 22, pleaded guilty Monday morning to misdemeanor assault charges in the melee that happened Valentine’s Day 2019 at MacArthur Center.
Judge Everett Martin sentenced Melvin to 12 months active time, or essentially time served, as Melvin has been in jail since shortly after the incident. Prosecutors set aside five felony charges of gang participation in a crime.
Melvin was charged with his brother D’Vegan and their friend Kevin Holloman. Surveillance video shows D’Quan Melvin standing with shopping bags outside the lower level entrance to the former Nordstrom store, when a juvenile approaches him and snatched the bag. A fight broke out and shots were fired. Two people were wounded, a juvenile and Holloman, but no one was killed.
Norfolk Police called the incident a battle between two gangs, but Melvin’s attorney and his mother have maintained from the beginning that neither he nor his brother were involved in a gang.
Melvin’s attorney Jeremy Mason says the video was crucial in reaching a conviction only on the misdemeanor charges and not the more serious ones, by showing he was not the aggressor.
“The video captured everything and that really saved Mr. Melvin, to be honest with you,” Mason said.
The mother of the two Melvin brothers, Kajeana Mainor, said she was relieved with the two sides coming together in D’Quan’s case.
“I was prepared to fight, and that being said we were all prepared to fight, and that moved (the prosecution) to do what they needed to do. Justice is justice and that’s just a fact, and we have to fight for justice,” she said.
Instead of a gang rivalry, Mason says it was a group of juveniles who harrassed D’Quan Melvin over his rap music career.
“This was strictly the fact that he was an artist and they didn’t appreciate it, and they wanted to show their jealousy in a way that wasn’t appropriate at all.”
D’Vegan Melvin, 23, and Holloman, 19, pleaded guilty to felony charges in the case. They have a court date April 10. An adult who was with the juveniles, Shawn Mitchell, was sentenced to a year of probation for carrying a concealed weapon.
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