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Teen convicted in fatal shooting during botched vape juice robbery gets life

Demarea Mitchell, who was 16, at the time, will be eligible for parole after 40 years.

ARAPAHOE COUNTY, Colo. — A teen who was convicted of first-degree murder in connection with a botched vape product robbery was sentenced this week to life in prison but will be eligible for parole after 40 years.

Demarea Mitchell, who was 16 at the time of the shooting, was found guilty of the following charges in July: 

  • First-degree murder
  • Aggravated robbery - possession of a real or simulated weapon
  • Attempted aggravated robbery - possession of a real or simulated weapon

He was also found guilty of two sentence enhancers of violent crime causing death and violent crime with a weapon, according to the District Attorney's Office.

Credit: Arapahoe County
Demarea Mitchell

>The video aired in 2019 not long after the fatal shooting.

The verdict came in on July 16. Mitchell was formally scheduled in Arapahoe County on Sept. 22, but due to his first-degree murder conviction and age at the time, it was an automatic sentence for life with parole after 40 years.

Credit: Chavez family
Lloyd Chavez

The victim’s father spoke on behalf of his family during the sentencing hearing.

“We lost a life that day. This is completely senseless. Why would anyone do this to him?” the father said. “The defendant gets to see his family, but we will never see Lloyd again.”

Mitchell was convicted in a May 8, 2019 shooting that resulted in the death of Lloyd Chavez, a Cherokee Trail High School senior who was known around school as a skilled rugby player.

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Three others were arrested in the case. Kenneth Gallegos, Dominic Stager and Juliana Serrano, were all 16 or 17 years old at the time of the shooting. The four were accused of planning to rob Chavez, who sold vape juice, at his home near East Smoky Hill Road and South Liverpool Street.

A jury convicted Gallegos of first-degree murder in April. In June, he was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 40 years.

RELATED: 'Even with a maximum sentence he gets to live and breathe': Teen gets life for role in murder of student

The District Attorney's Office dismissed charges against Stager and Serrano, according to court records. All four of the suspects are named as defendants in a civil lawsuit filed in May, records show.

According to the Arapahoe County Sheriff's Office affidavit in the shooting case, the four drove to Chavez house on the evening of May 8, 2019. When Chavez approached their vehicle, Serrano gave him $25. Mitchell got out of the vehicle to get the money back. A struggle ensued, and Chavez was shot.