Jersey City man sentenced to life in prison for fatally shooting 20-year-old in 2017

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A Jersey City man was sentenced to life in prison earlier today after being convicted of fatally shooting a 20-year-old in 2017, authorities said.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

Earlier today, Hudson County Superior Court Judge Sheila Venable sentenced Marquise Brown, 26, of Jersey City, to life in state prison for the April 2017 murder of 20-year-old Jersey City resident Amir Pleasant, the prosecutor’s office announced.

The life sentence is subject to the No Early Release Act which requires that Brown will have to serve 85 percent of 75 years — or 63 years and 9 months — before he is eligible for parole.

Additionally, co-defendant Rashad Exum, also 26, of Jersey City, was sentenced to 20 years in state prison for Conspiracy to commit murder subject to the No Early Release Act.

The No Early Release Act requires that Exum will have to serve at least 17 years before he is eligible for parole.

The sentence is to run consecutive to the time he is currently serving for a parole violation.

In September 2019, Brown was found guilty by a Hudson County Jury of murder, possession of a handgun for an unlawful purpose, unlawful possession of a handgun and conspiracy to commit murder.

Meanwhile, Exum was found guilty of conspiracy to commit murder, while co-defendant Jahi Beatty, 21, of Jersey City was found guilty of two counts of hindering apprehension or
prosecution.

Beatty is currently scheduled to be sentenced in January 2020.

During the course of the trial, the state presented evidence establishing that while Pleasant was sitting in the driver’s seat of his car in the area of 22 Dwight St., Brown walked up to the car and shot Pleasant multiple times.

Pleasant was later found in his crashed vehicle at the intersection of Grand Street and Jersey Avenue by Jersey City police. Pleasant was unconscious when he was found and he was pronounced dead a short while later at Jersey City Medical Center.

The state was represented by Assistant Prosecutor Leonardo Rinaldi from the Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office Homicide Unit and Venable presided over the matter.