The jury has returned with a shock verdict in the trial of John Graham, the Dorchester teenager who was charged with the murder of Irishman Ciarán Conneely in fall of 2011.
The 19-year-old was charged with the first-degree murder of Ciarán Conneely, known as Kiwi, 36, during a botched robbery attempt in the early hours of October 10, 2011.
Conneely, a construction worker, had been living in the U.S for over 12 years and had been moments away from his Dorchester home when he was callously shot dead. He was returning home from an Irish festival.
Graham, who was only 16-years-old at the time, was also charged with eight other offenses including shooting two other men later in October 2011. Both of those victims survived that attack but now live with the bullets lodged in their body.
The jury who took just under a day to return their unanimous decision, found the teenager not guilty in all charges related to the death of the Aran Islands native. These charges included first degree murder, armed assault with intent to rob, Unlawful possession of a firearm.
However, Graham has been found guilty in all other charges related to a separate incident that took place on Oct 30, 2011 and involved two other victims. These charges include armed assault with intent to rob, armed assault with intent to murder victim, aggravated assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and unlawful possession of a firearm.
Given the defendant was under the age of 17 at the time of his offences, these charges are considered to fall under the Juvenile Offender Act and will be a factor the Honorable Judge Giles will have to take into consideration during sentencing. Graham, may face commitment to the Department of Youth Services or a maximum of up to 20 years in state prison.
A spokesperson for the District Attorney's office suggested that Graham is likely to be held in juvenile detention until he is at least 21, and then possibly for many more years.
Visibly disappointed in the outcome of the case, family and friends of Ciarán Conneely declined to comment on the verdict.
A sentence hearing is scheduled on May 1.