Crime

Back behind bars: Teen who pleaded guilty in mass Liberty City nightclub shooting

Miami police investigate a mass shooting at The Spot nightclub in Liberty City on Sept. 28. One of the teens who pleaded guilty was re-arrested Jan. 15 for allegedly violating his probation.
Miami police investigate a mass shooting at The Spot nightclub in Liberty City on Sept. 28. One of the teens who pleaded guilty was re-arrested Jan. 15 for allegedly violating his probation. Miami Herald

A Miami teenager is back behind bars just two months after he got house arrest and probation for his role in a mass shooting that wounded 15 people at a Liberty City nightclub.

One reason: police found a Ruger 9-mm pistol with a loaded clip and two baggies of marijuana inside his bedroom closet, according to an arrest report released Monday.

Eighteen-year-old Will Campbell — who served only one year in jail for the nightclub shooting — was jailed late Friday on a charge of violating probation and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. He was also charged with marijuana possession.

Campbell will appear Tuesday before a Miami-Dade Circuit Court judge, the same one who warned him repeatedly to stay clean. He faces up to 30 years in prison for violating his probation.

“I believe you deserve a second chance, but I’m telling you now, do not disappoint me,” Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Stacy Glick told the teen in November when he was sentenced. “This is your life. Thirty years is a long time.”

His defense lawyer in the attempted murder case declined to comment.

The shooting at The Spot nightclub on Sept. 28, 2014 outraged the community, both because of the number of victims and the fact that many were underage, including an 11-year-old. The nightclub on Northwest 64th Street and Seventh Avenue was later shut down.

The shooting is believed to have stemmed from an earlier fight between two rival gangs. Investigators believed Campbell shot in the direction of another teen, Jamiroquai Young, 17, who was targeting a rival, Trevon Simmons, then 15.

Bullets peppered bystanders desperate to escape the chaos. Trevon survived a critical wound to the stomach. Young was also arrested; he also got probation.

A former Jackson High student, Campbell was kicked out of several schools after getting into trouble for possession of marijuana, carrying a knife and truancy.

Campbell got a generous plea deal because the state’s case was falling apart. The key eyewitness got arrested upstate and stopped cooperating with prosecutors.

With both sides acknowledging the risk of going to trial, Campbell pleaded guilty to a single count of attempted second-degree murder.

He was sentenced to 366 days behind bars, time for which he got credit for serving while awaiting trial. Under the plea deal, Campbell had to complete a program for at-risk youth called Empowering Youth, two years of house arrest and four years of probation.

Campbell was outfitted with a GPS electronic ankle monitor.

According to an arrest report, a state corrections probation officer learned that Campbell had failed to “remain confined” to his home on the 2300 block of Northwest 86th Street. During a probation compliance check, officers found the 9 mm Ruger with “extended loaded” ammo clip and the marijuana in the closet, according to an arrest report.

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