Jose Carranza found guilty of felony murder in schoolyard killings

NEWARK - A jury has found Jose Carranza guilty of felony murder and robbery in the deaths of three friends who were killed execution-style at a Newark schoolyard in 2007. Carranza was found not guilty of sexually assaulting the only survivor, Natasha Aeriel.

Carranza was accused of using a 12-inch machete to slash at Aeriel's neck during an attack on her and three others. Prosecutors said a fingerprint of Carranza's was found on a still-cold bottle of beer at the schoolyard murder scene. Aeriel also identified him in a series of photographs from her hospital bed.

Aeriel's brother, Terrance Aeriel and friends, Iofemi Hightower and Dashon Harvey, all died from gunshots to the head. They were all either attending or planning to attend Delaware State University that fall.

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