2020 Topeka murder case sees 3 men convicted

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Diquan Clayton, left, James Boatwright and Davontra Alston. (Courtesy Photos/Shawnee County Department of Corrections)

TOPEKA (KSNT) – All three men accused in a 2020 Topeka shooting have now been convicted Friday evening.

Shawnee County District Attorney Mike Kagay said the last of three defendants have been convicted in the case. Before a jury trial was set to begin, Diquan Clayton pleaded guilty to the first-degree murder committed during an inherently dangerous felony. His sentencing is now scheduled for 3 p.m. on Dec. 17.

A jury trial in May previously found Davontra Alston guilty of the following and sentenced him to 618 months in prison, or 51 and a half years:

  • Murder in the First Degree, Premeditated
  • Alternatively Murder in the First Degree, Committed during an Inherently Dangerous Felony
  • Conspiracy to Commit Murder in the First Degree, Premeditated
  • Criminal Discharge of a Firearm into an Occupied Vehicle

In the case of the State of Kansas v. James Boatwright, 20-CR-637, a jury trial in November found him guilty of the following with sentencing scheduled for 2:00 p.m. on Dec. 17:

  • Murder in the First Degree, Premeditated
  • Alternatively Murder in the First Degree, Committed during an inherently Dangerous Felony
  • Conspiracy to Commit Murder in the First Degree, Premeditated
  • Criminal Discharge of a Firearm into an Occupied Vehicle.

All three men were originally arrested for the April 4, 2020 shooting death of a Topeka man, according to Kagay. Officers arrived in the area of 5th and Western and discovered a 2001 Ford Taurus that had been left crashed in a yard. D’Angelo Payne, found in the driver seat, had suffered a single gunshot wound to the head and was pronounced dead at the scene.

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