Two men who robbed and killed a 15-year-old outside a Dunkin Donuts store in Phoenixville during a botched marijuana deal arranged over Snapchat have been convicted of second-degree murder and related charges.
Brian Corsey, 26, and John Ortiz-Carr, 27, were found guilty by a Chester County jury late Tuesday in the December 2017 slaying of Jayson Ortiz-Cameron. Corsey fired the shot that killed the teen, and Ortiz-Carr drove the car that they and an accomplice, Robert McCoy III, used to flee the scene, according to prosecutors.
McCoy, 24, who testified on behalf of the prosecution, pleaded guilty to third-degree murder in January 2019.
Sentencing in the case was deferred, but second-degree murder carries a mandatory penalty of life in prison.
Jonathan R. Altschuler, who represented Corsey, declined to comment on the verdict. Ortiz-Carr’s attorney, Alexander Silow, did not return a request for comment.
Ortiz-Cameron, a freshman at Phoenixville Area High School, had been recruited by a drug dealer, Thomas Farrell, to accompany him to a marijuana sale he had arranged to take place outside the doughnut shop, authorities said.
Prosecutors, led by Deputy District Attorney Carlos Barraza, said Corsey and Ortiz-Carr planned to rob Farrell during the transaction. The defense offered a different version to jurors: Ortiz-Cameron and Farrell planned to rob the buyers. Ortiz-Cameron, they said, was shot in self-defense during a fight.
The events of that evening were captured on surveillance footage. Shortly after 7 p.m., McCoy, Corsey, and Ortiz-Carr arrived at the store on the 200 block of Nutt Road. They circled the parking lot in an attempt to ensure they were not under surveillance. The three men, who were in a black Ford Focus registered to Corsey, made contact with Ortiz-Cameron and Farrell behind the store.
Seeing that they were being met by three men instead of one, Farrell and Ortiz-Cameron tried to back out of the deal, prosecutors said. Within minutes, there was a confrontation.
Ortiz-Cameron and Corsey ended up alone behind the parked Ford. Farrell told police that when he tried to approach Ortiz-Cameron and Corsey, McCoy held him back, saying, “You don’t want to go over there,” according to court documents. Farrell then said he heard a shot and saw Ortiz-Cameron fall to the ground.
Surveillance footage played during the trial showed Corsey pull a handgun out of his pocket and point it at Ortiz-Cameron as he robbed him of his marijuana and money. He fired a single shot, striking the teenager in the head.
Medics pronounced Ortiz-Cameron dead at the scene. Witnesses helped lead police to McCoy and Ortiz-Carr, both of Pottstown. Corsey, of Philadelphia, was taken into custody months later by U.S. marshals after a standoff in Georgia.