Jody Penn of St. Thomas pled guilty Tuesday to murder in the April 2010 shooting death of a man of in the Anna’s Fancy area, the V.I. Department of Justice announced Thursday.
The 30-year-old Penn agreed to plea guilty to one count of second-degree murder for his role in the April 8 shooting death of Dion Henry, according to the Justice Department statement.
Testifying during the April 2010 bail hearing, VIPD Major Crimes detective Albion George said police were called to the neighborhood in Anna’s Fancy that April morning at about 8:50 a.m. after neighbors reported that numerous shots had been fired.
“We discovered a young, black male lying face down in what appeared to be blood with multiple gunshots in his body,” George said.
During their investigation into the case, police officers found a .40-caliber Glock handgun with several rounds of ammunition and an AK-47 assault rifle with 7.62 mm rounds in Penn’s apartment. The serial numbers on both weapons had been obliterated. Several spent 7.62 mm shell casings were also found in the immediate area of Henry’s body.
Penn was initially charged with first-degree murder, first- and third-degree assault, reckless endangerment, and possessing an unlicensed machine gun, among other weapons charges.
A change of plea hearing for Penn was set for Thursday before Superior Court Judge Micheal C. Dunston in the Alexander A. Farrelly Justice Center on St. Thomas.
A conviction for second-degree murder carries a minimum penalty of five years of incarceration. The judge can sentence the defendant to any maximum length of time, short of life in prison.