Mississippi man pleads guilty to involvement in 2018 Andalusia drive-by shooting

Published 3:30 pm Monday, August 28, 2023

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Javontae Lamar Washington, 22, of Moss Point, Mississippi, recently pled guilty to two counts of first degree attempted assault and to discharging a firearm into an occupied dwelling before Circuit Judge Charles “Lex” Short. Washington’s charges followed his involvement in an August 2018 shooting on Oak Street in Andalusia.

Javontae Lamar Washington, 22, of Moss Point, Mississippi

Washington, together with Santonio Davis (also of Mississippi) and a local juvenile, met two other individuals on Oak Street where Washington, Davis, and the juvenile intended to purchase $20 worth of marijuana. After the exchange of money, the marijuana sellers purportedly attempted to leave the area to go get the marijuana. A brief confrontation ensued before Washington, Davis, and the juvenile left Oak Street and returned to their vehicle parked at Sonic.

The group of three then traveled by vehicle back down Oak Street where they saw the two individuals who took the money. Washington and Davis opened fire upon them with stray bullets hitting an occupied home on Oak Street. They then immediately fled the area and each returned to Mississippi. They were later arrested by U.S. Marshals and transported back to Andalusia.

Washington and Davis were each interviewed by investigators with the Andalusia Police Department and both admitted to shooting toward the two persons who purportedly were going to sell them marijuana. Interviews given by other witnesses corroborated the accounts of Washington and Davis, as well as evidence recovered from the scene, according to officials with the district attorney’s office.

Washington was sentenced to 10 years on each of the attempted assault charges. He was sentenced to 15 years for discharging a firearm into an occupied dwelling.  Davis received the same sentence when he pled guilty in April 2021. At the time of this case, Washington had no prior arrest record, felony or misdemeanor. However, Washington is currently serving time with the Mississippi Department of Corrections following convictions from Covington County, Mississippi for his acting as an accessory after the fact on two charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and avoiding arrest after shooting into an occupied dwelling.

The cases were prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Nikki Stephens.

“Washington is clearly a danger to any community where he may choose to make himself a part of, ours included. I’m grateful that nobody was injured, most of all the innocent family that was inside living their normal lives when their house received gunfire,” Stephens said.

“Our communities battle their own criminal element,” added District Attorney Walt Merrell. “From a prosecutor’s perspective, we cannot allow criminals and their dangerous behaviors to spill-over into Covington County without consequence. Criminals need to know that just because they may get away with things in their own hometowns, that will not be an excuse here — whether or not they’re from a neighboring county, state, or otherwise. I’m proud our local officers were able to identify out-of-town suspects, work the case, and put it all together to allow for successful prosecution.”