Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin announced today that Terrel Barros (age 24) was sentenced to two consecutive life sentences for the August 26, 2012 murder of Jamal Cruz outside Monet Lounge nightclub in Providence. On July 22, 2013, a Superior Court jury found Barros guilty on all counts after a trial presided over by Superior Court Associate Justice Robert D. Krause.
In addition to the two consecutive life sentences for the charges of first degree murder and discharge of a firearm causing death, Judge Krause also sentenced Barros to 10 years to serve on the count of possession of a firearm by a person previously convicted of a crime of violence, to run consecutive; 10 years to serve for the count of possession of a firearm without a license, to run consecutive; 20 years to serve on the count of assault with a deadly weapon, to run concurrent; and a 20 year consecutive sentence, with the first 10 years to be served nonparolable, the 10 remaining years suspended, for the count of discharge of a firearm injury resulting.
During the trial, the State proved beyond a reasonable doubt that after a minor verbal dispute in Monet Lounge between Barros and Cruz and their groups of friends, Barros shot and killed Cruz in the parking lot just before 2:30 a.m. Barros also shot and seriously wounded Rokiem Henley, a friend of the decedent.
Cruz, Henley and several friends arrived at the nightclub shortly before 12:30 a.m. on August 26, 2012. Barros and several friends arrived at Monet Lounge shortly after. When leaving the club, the two groups of friends, who had never met before this night, got into a minor verbal dispute.
Outside in the parking lot, Barros wielded a 40 caliber Smith & Wesson firearm and fired multiple shots, striking Cruz and Henley. Upon hearing shots fired, Providence Police Patrolmen Michael Pattie and Daniel Sirignano, who were working detail shifts at the nightclub, took Barros into custody almost immediately.
Before dying, Jamal Cruz identified Barros as the shooter.
"Jamal Cruz was a beloved father, son and brother who dedicated his life to helping others, serving as a mentor to troubled youth and working with elderly victims of abuse. Terrel Barros brutally and senselessly cut short Jamal Cruz's life just as he was realizing his full potential – just a few months earlier, Mr. Cruz received a promotion at work, something for which he had worked extremely hard," said Attorney General Kilmartin. "One of Jamal Cruz's last actions was to identify Terrel Barros as his shooter, and today justice was served. I commend the Providence Police Department for swiftly apprehending a killer, and I thank Judge Krause for sending a strong message that perpetrators of gun violence will be held accountable."
Providence Police Detective Angelo A'Vant led the investigation, and Special Assistant Attorney General Peter Roklan and Assistant Attorney General Stacey Veroni prosecuted the case on behalf of the Office of Attorney General.