YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – A Youngstown man will spend decades behind bars after a Mahoning County jury found him guilty of murder Friday afternoon.
Aubrey Toney was convicted on the lesser charge of murder and not aggravated murder, which would have made him eligible for the death penalty. He also was found guilty on two counts of felonious assault. All three charges carry a mandatory three-year prison enhancement because a gun was used in the crime.
Toney was convicted in the September 2010 shooting death of Thomas Repchic and the wounding of his wife, Jacqueline, as the couple was driving away from St. Dominic’s Church on the South Side. Prosecutors said the shooting was a case of mistaken identity because the Repchics were driving a car similar to one driven by an alleged rival.
The jury was unable to reach a verdict on a charge of attempted murder. That charge was related to the shooting of Jacqueline Repchic.
Toney’s face was emotionless when Mahoning County Common Pleas Judge Maureen Sweeney read the verdicts. The jury deliberated for an hour on Thursday and all day Friday before reaching their verdict.
Mahoning County Assistant Prosecutor Becky Doherty said she feels justice was served.
“They reached a verdict on the murder, which I am very pleased with and a verdict on the felonious assault, which I also am very pleased with,” she said..
The news was hard for Toney’s family to hear and they were visibly shaken and crying after the announcement.
In a previous interview, defense attorney John Juhasz said he was confident Toney would be found innocent. He asked the jury to deliberate on the evidence and the law, not on emotion, and said the case was circumstantial.
Toney could be sentenced to life in prison.
The Repchic’s did not want to go on camera, but released this statement:
“The past four years has been very stressful for our family. One cannot even imagine what we have been going through. Now that justice has been served, we can attempt to begin our healing process and seek final closure.”
Toney’s co-defendant, Kevin Agee, who drove the car used in the drive-by shooting, was found guilty of murder, attempted murder and two counts of felonious assault in April 2012. He was sentenced to serve 39 years to life.
However, Agee appealed that sentence and in March, Sweeney re-sentenced him to 31 years in prison with a mandatory five years probation if he is paroled.