PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — A jury found Jamas Lafonz Hilliard guilty on Wednesday of voluntary manslaughter and maliciously shooting into an occupied dwelling in the killing of 37-year-old Charkela Branch.

Portsmouth police said the shooting happened just before 2 a.m. near the 10th block of Jenkins Place in the Cradock Historic District on July 25, 2022.

Evidence at the trial showed that Hilliard and Branch, who were in a domestic relationship, had a fight at Branch’s home, according to the Portsmouth Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office. During the altercation, both parties fired gunshots at each other, resulting in Branch’s death.

Hilliard is scheduled to be sentenced on Dec. 13 at 10 a.m. He also faces two counts of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, for which a trial date is pending.

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