NEW ORLEANS – Yesterday, District Attorney Williams, joined by Assistant District Attorneys (ADAs) Corbin Bates and Lantz Savage, discussed the guilty as charged conviction of defendant Devion Taylor for the murders of Kane Sanders and Christopher Cornelius in New Orleans East. The jury trial resulted in Taylor being found guilty as charged for 2 counts of Second Degree Murder and 1 count of Obstruction of Justice stemming from violent crimes committed in the Little Woods neighborhood in January 2022. Additionally, DA Williams stood with District E Councilman Oliver Thomas, Clerk of Court and longtime New Orleans East resident Donna Glapion, City of New Orleans Public Safety Support Director Ross Bourgeois, NOPD 7th District Captain Wayne Delarge, NOPD Lieutenant Anthony Bakewell, NOPD Detective Nicole Alcala, East New Orleans Neighborhood Advisory Commission Leadership, Hangout NOLA Owner Raynard Bender, New Orleans Artist Reggie Ford, and Reaching for the Stars CEO Brian Rudolph to take a stand against violence in New Orleans East.

“I want to be very clear – we will not tolerate crime or violence in any form in New Orleans East nor any part of New Orleans. With the support of business, community and law enforcement partners, we will take New Orleans East back from those who wish to wreak havoc and cause harm,” said District Attorney Jason Williams. “Not a single eyewitness was willing to come to court to testify in this case. The successful conviction of this murderer would not have been possible without camera footage from the Real Time Crime Center and the testimony of Director Ross Bourgeois as well as the hard work of NOPD Detective Nicole Alcala. We must have this type of collaboration and partnership. I would like to thank ADA Corbin Bates and ADA Lantz Savage for their hard work in securing a unanimous conviction for the victims of this crime. Our prosecutors will continue working to hold those who cause harm in the community responsible for their actions as this DA’s Office remains resolute in our commitment to seek justice for the people of this city.”


The trial took place in Section A of Criminal District Court; Judge Calvin Johnson presided. The sentencing date is set for May 25, 2023. The defendant faces life in prison on the Second Degree Murder charge and up to forty years in prison on the Obstruction of Justice charge.

The Gillet-Sanders and Smith-Cornelius families said, “I would really want to let the city know that our family is grateful and thankful to the 7th District detectives specifically Detective Nicole Alcala and her team for all their efforts with collecting evidence. We are also grateful for their long hours looking at video footage and treating this particular case as a priority and all the criminal forensic teams and personnel that assisted and contributed to the conviction of the person responsible for this incident. Most of all, I am thankful for ADAs Corbin Bates and Lantz Savage as well as Victim Witness Advocate Jasmine Hillyer for stepping in and doing such an amazing job with following the evidence to get the rightful conviction. Because of that, we can now have closure after losing our son and cousin.”

According to the NOPD reports, surveillance footage obtained revealed defendant Taylor as the shooter when the incident occurred on January 8, 2022, at the intersection of Benson Street and Curran Road.

City of New Orleans Public Safety Support Director Ross Bourgeois said, “This tragic crime was captured by public safety cameras in the area. Once the call to 911 was initiated, the dedicated public safety personnel at the Real Time Crime Center were able to provide valuable real-time suspect information to the responding officers. This footage was introduced to the jury at the trial to allow the members to see an unbiased, accurate account of what occurred.”


District E Councilmember Oliver Thomas said, “Many thanks to the DA’s Office, NOPD, our partners in the Criminal Justice System, and the community. Convictions are solutions to getting the most violent offenders off our streets. When we get convictions, it tells criminal offenders that we will come together to get them off our streets!”

New Orleans East is home to a strong business and residential community. DA Williams was joined by a host of New Orleans stakeholders committed to standing against violence and increasing safety in New Orleans.

1st Clerk of Court Donna Glapion said, “I have lived in New Orleans East for over 50 years. My intention is to stay in New Orleans East – I am hopeful that the statistics are saying that New Orleans East is a safer place. It’s because the people in the community and elected officials are coming together to say all of New Orleans has to get better. We are working to make this a place that criminals cannot come to do their deeds. I want to thank the people who have been on the ground doing the work and I encourage everyone to continue to working together to make New Orleans East a better place.”

ENONAC President Dawn Hebert said, “All community members are here today in support of each other to highlight our commitment to returning our communities to a safe, viable place to live, work, play, and shop. This is our home and the East New Orleans Neighborhood Advisory Commission is committed to improving the quality of life for all residents and supporting business that choose New Orleans East to also be home.”

Hangout NOLA CEO Raynard Bender said, “We must get back to the village! A strong, positive village promotes positive outcomes for our youth! At the root of solving our crime problem must be rallying as a village.”

Reaching for the Stars CEO Brian Rudolph said, “Let’s continue to keep our city safe, be active and trust we can get justice for the ones who are accountable for their wrongful actions.”

To watch DA Williams discuss the guilty as charged conviction and stand with New Orleans East community against violence, click here.

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