Gerrin L. Massie

EDWARDSVILLE — A 23-year-old Madison, IL., man is facing first-degree murder charges following a shooting which occurred May 12 in Venice.

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Madison County State’s Attorney Tom Gibbons announced the charges Monday morning.

Gerrin L. Massie (d.o.b. 3/24/97) has been charged with two counts of First Degree Murder, Class M felonies and two counts of Attempt First Degree Murder, Class X felonies. At 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, May 12, Venice Police Department responded to shots fired on Market Street in Venice. Venice Police said Massie fired 15 shots into a vehicle. One bullet struck the victim, 30-year-old Kenneth Stanley Jr., in the back of the head. Stanley was rushed to Gateway Regional Medical Center in Granite City, where he was pronounced dead.

The defendant is charged with attempted murder for shots fired at Erick Buntyn and Jerard McCoy who were in the vehicle with Stanley.

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Tahjae SimmsTahjae Simms (d.o.b. 12/24/98) has been charged with one count of Obstructing Justice, a Class 4 felony, for furnishing false information to a special agent with the Illinois State Police regarding the shooting. Simms is being held on a $200,000 bail set by Associate Judge Ron Slemer.

First Assistant State’s Attorney Crystal Uhe said: “These charges are a result of the skilled investigation of the Illinois State Police and the Venice Police Department. Even in the uncertain times we live in, Madison County citizens can rest assured that their law enforcement is hard at work making sure that violent individuals are taken off our streets. My sincere condolences go out to the family of Kenneth Stanley, Jr.”

State’s Attorney Gibbons acknowledged the vital work of the Venice Police Department and Illinois State Police for quickly identifying and apprehending the suspects. Gibbons commended his prosecutors, First Assistant State’s Attorney Crystal Uhe, Head of the Violent Crimes Unit, and Assistant State’s Attorney Kerri Davis for their hard work and commitment to justice.

“A tragic loss of life by violence is something we never get used to and will never accept. We are so very thankful to be able to bring justice for the victims and, we hope, the beginning of a path of healing for his family and loved ones. We just celebrated National Police Week and the outstanding work of law enforcement personnel. Solving this crime as they did reminds us how truly blessed we are to have our hard-working and talented local and state law enforcement personnel protecting and serving us every day,” Gibbons said.

Massie is being held on a $2,000,000 bail set by Associate Judge Ron Slemer. If convicted of one count of first-degree murder, the sentencing range is 45 years to life on each count served at 100 percent in the Illinois Department of Corrections. If convicted of attempted first-degree murder, the sentencing range is 31 years to life on each count.

These charges, as well as the statements made herein, are based upon probable cause. The defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

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