Former NBA player convicted of killing Atlanta mother to be released, DA trying to stop new sentence

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ATLANTA — Channel 2 Action News has learned a former NBA and Georgia Tech basketball star has received a new sentence in a 2011 homicide case that could result in his immediate release from prison, but now the Fulton County District Attorney’s office is asking a judge to rescind it.

Javaris Crittenton’s, attorney, Brian Steel, confirms Crittenton, who had been sentenced in 2015 to 23 years in prison with 17 more years on probation after a guilty plea to voluntary manslaughter and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, was resentenced today and was scheduled to be released immediately.

Crittenton, an alleged gang member, was connected to the shooting death of Atlanta mother Julian Jones. Prosecutors claimed Crittenton was aiming for a man who allegedly robbed him days earlier and did not intend to shoot Jones.

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The Fulton County District Attorney’s office says a senior assistant D.A. consented in court to the new sentence.

The D.A.’s office told Channel 2 Investigative Reporter Mark Winne that District Attorney Fani Willis was unaware of the sentence modification hearing that took place today until Winne called her office.

The D.A.’s office says since Willis had briefly represented Crittenton as a defense attorney, her entire office has a legal conflict, and late today it filed a motion to rescind Crittenton’s new sentence and has asked the Prosecuting Attorney’s Council to appoint a special prosecutor to the case.

A person present in court for Thursday’s hearing tells Winne that the victim’s mother spoke and vehemently opposed the new sentence.


A document Winne obtained indicates Crittenton’s new sentence for voluntary manslaughter is twenty years, which includes close to a decade on probation, and 10 years in prison commuted to time served.

The document indicates his new sentence for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon is 20 years on probation to be served following the manslaughter sentence.

The new sentence carries several special conditions, including 7,200 hours of community service during the first 10 years of his probation.

The document says,

“This community service shall be served, at the behest of the District Attorney’s office and in concert with being available at all times requested to meet with and speak at Next Level Boys Academy and/or other community organizations chosen by the District Attorney to educate the youth in the community about the evils of gang affiliation, illegal drugs and guns which lead to violence and negative outcomes for gang members and the community. As a condition of Mr. Crittenton’s release, he must work to prevent youth involvement in gangs and violence through community outreach. He must speak truthfully and openly about all of his experiences in gangs as well as solitary time in prison.”


The document also says Crittenton will be on Intensive Probation for the first five years “during which time he will be required to obtain, wear, and pay for a monitoring system approved by probation which he must wear at all times.

During the period of Intensive Probation, Mr. Crittenton will have a 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. curfew and will only be authorized to be out of his house for pre-arranged volunteer activities as allowed by his probation officer.”

That document goes on to say, “As part of the plea negotiation, Mr. Crittenton, by and through undersigned counsel, and the State of Georgia, by and through the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office, agreed to a sentence modification if Mr. Crittenton met several criteria (1) served at least five years; (2) maintain overall positive attitude and behavior while in prison; (3) commit to community service to encourage young people to resist gang affiliation; and (4) commit to speaking out about the consequences of violent behavior. Mr. Crittenton has satisfied these criteria.”

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