Prosecutors waive death penalty for two men charged in killing of Kason Guyton

Crime Watch

Jonathan Knight, file image

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — The Kern County District Attorney’s office has decided not to seek the death penalty for two men charged with murder in the death of 5-year-old Kason Guyton.

Prosecutor Eric Smith said in court Wednesday the death penalty is not being pursued against Jonathan Knight and Jeremy King in a drive-by shooting that killed Kason and wounded his then-7-year-old brother.

Jeremy King

The two face life without the possibility of parole if convicted of murder, attempted murder and other charges filed in connection with the Feb. 23, 2017, shooting.

King, 28, and Knight, 30, were indicted in September by a grand jury that heard evidence, including multiple wiretaps, during a period of three weeks.

Both men are being held without bail.

Kason Guyton

The car Kason and his brother were traveling in was driven by their mother’s boyfriend, an East Side Crips gang member who is believed to have been the intended target. They had left Maya Cinemas and were returning home when the shooting occurred on California Avenue.

The next hearing in the case is set for March 4. Trial is scheduled for April 27.

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