Jquan McInnis sentenced to minimum of 60 years in prison
A Hennepin County District Court Judge sentenced Jquan McInnis to at least 60 years in prison for shooting and killing one man and killing an infant in front of the baby’s father, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced Friday.
McInnis, 20, was 17 years and 7 months when he fired six shots into a car killing the 20-year-old Gustav Christianson II and seven-month-old Jayden Redden on Oct. 9, 2016. Late Thursday afternoon, Hennepin County District Court Judge Jeannice Reding, reading extensively from her sentencing memo, called McInnis’ double homicide, “brazen and heartless.”
She sentenced McInnis to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 30 years on each of the two first-degree murder charges and ran them consecutively. He will be almost 78-years-old before he can be considered for release. Judge Reding also gave him credit for more than three years already served in jail.
McInnis was convicted of the two murders in 2018.If he had been an adult at the time the murders were committed, he would have been sentenced immediately to life in prison without parole under state law. However, because he was a juvenile when he committed the murders, a 2012 U.S. Supreme Court ruling required Judge Reding to hold a hearing, which she did in November, to see if he should spend the rest of his life in prison. The Supreme Court relied heavily on science which has determined that full brain maturity does not occur until the mid-20s, especially in boys.
The evidence from the November hearing established that McInnis was likely exposed to drugs and alcohol in the womb, which is detrimental to the fetus. He was taken from his mother as an infant and placed with her mother and her husband. However, he suffered “chronic maltreatment” there, including a failure of the grandparents to follow up on school and mental health resources offered to McInnis.
Instead, he spent a lot of his time on the street, unsupervised, and “spent time with mostly older gang members and learned how to survive on the streets, including using violence as a way of conflict resolution,” Judge Reding said. But in deciding not to sentence him to life in prison without parole, the judge noted that both experts who examined McInnis said he is capable of being rehabilitated in prison.
According to the evidence in the case, McInnis believed Christianson had stolen from him. He obtained a gun and when he passed a car parked near 26th Street East and 11th Avenue South with Christianson inside, he told his companion to drive and park a block away. McInnis put his hood up to hide his identity, ran through several yards and fired five times, killing Christianson. As he was leaving, McInnis fired one more shot through the car’s back window, striking the infant in his car seat, although missing the baby’s father, the driver of the car.
Jquan McInnis Criminal Complaint (PDF)