OC graduate acquitted of homicide in Edinboro shooting

Devin StevensonDevin Stevenson

From staff reports

A former Venango County resident was acquitted Friday of homicide charges in connection with a shooting almost three years ago near the campus of Edinboro University.

During the four-day trial set in Erie County, 23-year-old Devin Stevenson claimed self-defense in the March 20, 2015, fatal shooting of O’Shae Imes, according to a GoErie.com article.

Stevenson is a 2012 graduate of Oil City High School.

Jurors found Stevenson guilty of the lesser charges of possession of marijuana, possession with intent to deliver, possession of drug paraphernalia and carrying a firearm without a license, the website said.

Defense counsel David Ridge didn’t argue the charges of possession with intent to deliver and carrying a firearm without a license, the website said.

In what Edinboro police described as a marijuana deal gone wrong, Stevenson shot 24-year-old Imes and Andrew Baker, then 19, of Coatesville, at an off-campus apartment. All three were Edinboro students.

Imes later died on March 19, 2016, at Strong Memorial Hospital in his hometown of Rochester, New York. He had been hospitalized since the shooting and never fully recovered from his injuries.

Charges were refiled last July to include homicide following a months-long investigation into Imes’ death.

Court documents from the incident said Stevenson used a handgun to shoot Imes multiple times in the torso and leg and shot Baker in the shoulder area.

Stevenson testified during his trial Thursday and said he arrived at the apartment to sell about one pound of marijuana, an amount equivalent to $3,000, GoErie.com reported.

He admitted to carrying a gun without a license, which he used when Imes produced a pellet gun during what turned out to be an attempted robbery, the website said.

Baker, who took the stand Tuesday, said he and Imes had created a plan to rob Stevenson, although there was no intention to make Stevenson think he may get shot, the website said.

Baker is facing a count of conspiracy to commit robbery in the case.

Online court documents indicate Erie County Judge John Mead set bail for Stevenson at 10 percent of $10,000, which he posted Friday.

Sentencing is scheduled April 20.