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Gazette Premium Content Colorado Springs man convicted on all counts in double murder

photo - Alonzo Paige, 22 + caption
Alonzo Paige, 22
By Lance Benzel Updated: November 14, 2013 at 6:59 pm

A 22-year-old man was convicted Thursday of all counts in a 2012 quadruple shooting that killed two men in east Colorado Springs.

After nearly three weeks at trial, a jury reached its verdicts against Alonzo "BabyWiz" Paige after just five hours of deliberation - a swift rejection of Paige's claims that he fired in self-defense to ward off an ambush by gang rivals.

Marquise Bean, 20, and Andrew Encalade, 21, were killed and two other men seriously wounded early Jan. 24, 2012, when Paige opened fire outside an alcohol-fueled party at the Timberlane Apartments, 3985 E. Bijou St., according to testimony.

Encalade's older brother, Adam Encalade, 27, was hit in the back and uses a wheelchair. Jareem Vanterpool, 23, suffered nerve damage, authorities say.

"We are extremely grateful for the justice that they provided for the victims," prosecutor Jeff Harwood said of the seven-woman, five-man panel.

During closing arguments Thursday, Harwood and prosecutor Reggy Short conceded that Paige attacked after a friend was knocked down with a punch, but said no one else was armed, and that a fistfight did not merit the violence that followed.

The trouble began after Paige flirted with Vanterpool's girlfriend, prosecutors said.

They cited witness accounts that Paige shouted "west side" as he gunned down the four men over a 10-second span, leaving only women unharmed. After wounding Bean repeatedly, he returned seconds later to "finish him off," Harwood told jurors.

"The defendant stood at Kaos's feet and put one last bullet right through his chest," Harwood said, using Bean's nickname.

Sobbing in the wake of the verdicts, Paige asked to address the court and delivered a tearful apology even as he said the victims "left no choice."

"Please forgive me, please," Paige said, tears streaming down his face. "I didn't want to do that but they made me."

Defense attorneys Phil Dubois and Will Drexler delivered a three-day defense in which they sought to persuade jurors that Paige and his friend were outnumbered 4-2 and in the midst of an attack.

Describing the victims as "thugs" in his closing argument, Dubois argued that Paige had no duty to submit to a "beat down" or retreat from his fallen friend.

"I guess what he's supposed to do is leave (his friend) lying there in the care and comfort of the Carver Park crew," Dubois said. "They were gonna be nice, right?"

The attorneys clashed over conflicts among witnesses' stories and traded accusations that gang associates on each side sought to intimidate people involved in the case.

Paige faces life in prison without parole at a Nov. 26 sentencing hearing.

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