Two suspects in the murder of Robinson Pal reject plea deal

Two men arrested and charged for the murder of 29-year-old Robinson Pal rejected a plea deal in court Thursday, and their case will now head to trial.

Devonte Johnson, 27 faces six charges for his alleged role in the Pal’s murder: first-degree murder while armed, two counts of aggravated assault knowingly while armed, two counts of assault with intent to kill while armed, and one count of carrying a dangerous weapon outside of the home.

Antoine Byrd, 35, faces first-degree murder charges, two counts of Aggravated assault knowingly while armed, and two counts of assault with intent to kill while armed.

The rejected plea agreement would have reduced both Byrd and Johnson’s charges to one count of voluntary manslaughter while armed and one count of assault with a dangerous weapon.

Both charges stem from an altercation in a downtown club in February 2016. According to eyewitness interviews including in charging documents, Byrd and Pal were fighting and Byrd was heard saying he was, “ going to kill [Pal].”

Shortly after the fight began, an off-duty cop and club employee, responded to the fight and found Pal unconscious with a stab wound on the left side of his chest. A second victim was found just outside of the club suffering from a stab wound in his back.

Byrd and Johnson are both being held without bond as they await the start of their trial on September 19.

Byrd and Johnson are expected in court for a status hearing March 23.

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