Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Gang member will cover tattoos with makeup in Pasco murder trial

James Barron, 24, has several tattoos, including a teardrop beneath one eye.

James Barron, 24, has several tattoos, including a teardrop beneath one eye.

A judge will allow a gang member to cover his tattoos during his murder trial next week.

James "Pimpin' " Barron, 24, is charged with killing Bloods street gang member Kamar Allen on Aug. 21, 2011.

Barron's lawyer, Bjorn E. Brunvand, argued that the tattoos could prejudice jurors, who are only supposed to consider the facts in the case. Barron's tattoos include a teardrop under one of his eyes, a large neck tattoo, "727" on one arm and "pimpin" on the other, as well as dollar signs on each of his eyelids.

Circuit Judge William Webb said he would allow it as long as it would not affect Barron's identification by witnesses.

Prosecutor Chris Sprowls argued that some of the witnesses only know Barron as a white male with a teardrop tattoo under his eye, and some only know him as "Pimpin'."

Webb said the court can make a stipulation on the identification of Barron so that witnesses won't need to reveal that he has tattoos.

It's not the first time a Pasco defendant was allowed to cover up tattoos during a murder trial. In 2009, neo-Nazi John Ditullio covered a large swastika on his neck and a crude insult on the other side. The makeup artist cost $125 a day.

The case got national attention, and Ditullio was ultimately convicted. He did not wear his makeup on his sentencing day.

In March, Pinellas-Pasco Circuit Judge Cynthia Newton granted a motion to allow Cody Dials, 20, to cover his face tattoos with store-bought concealer. His murder trial is slated for later this year.

According to Pasco sheriff's deputies, Barron suspected Allen of stealing money from his mother. He shot Allen in a field between Anclote Boulevard and Blossom Lake Drive in Holiday, investigators say. Allen was found in a ditch with a .40-caliber bullet in his head.

Barron also is charged in the Dec. 9, 2011, death of Cedric Saunders.

About a week after that killing, Barron was arrested on multiple cocaine-related charges. While in custody, deputies searched his home and found blood-spattered keys that matched the Kia Rio in which Saunders' body was found.

While Barron was in jail, he also was charged with Allen's murder, for which he will face trial first.

He also is charged with solicitation of murder, along with his mother Michelle Lee Miller. Deputies say he asked for a fellow gang member to murder a witness in his case, through a letter he sent to his mom while he was in jail.

Prosecutors plan to use evidence from the letter in this trial.

Gang member will cover tattoos with makeup in Pasco murder trial 05/29/14 [Last modified: Thursday, May 29, 2014 9:27pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Deputies responding to car crash in Riverview find shooting victim inside


    RIVERVIEW — The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office is investigating after deputies responding to a single-car crash late Wednesday discovered someone in the car had been shot, authorities said.

  2. Commentary: Ten years later, the iPhone owns us


    Steve Jobs unveiled the first iPhone in January, 2007, before an adoring congregation, in his signature "Sermon on the Mount" style. On June 29, it became available to the public. Ten years later, the phone has spread like Christianity. The device represents "the pinnacle product of all capitalism," as Brian Merchant …

    Apple is celebrating the 10th anniversary of the iPhone's release on June 29, 2007. [Associated Press]
  3. Florida education news: School grades, teacher pay, transgender lawsuit and more


    SCHOOL GRADES: Florida's school grades showed improvement as the state's revised accountability system entered its third year in its current form. …

    Bear Creek Elementary principal Willette Houston celebrates her school's A grade with students in a summer program at the school.
  4. Whiskey wasn't my thing, but then I visited the Teeling Distillery in Ireland



    If you drink your way through a four-day trip to Ireland, can you make an honest recommendation on anything?

    The focal point of the Teeling Whiskey Distillery in Dublin is the copper pots used in the process.
  5. Faulty AC leaves Chinsegut manor house, supporters steaming

    Human Interest


    As summer temperatures climb, volunteers at Chinsegut Hill Manor House say a faulty air-conditioning system has put them in a hot spot.

    Thomas Hoops of Tampa, left, takes a breather with his 1-year-old daughter, Zoe Hoops, on the porch of the Chinsegut Hill Manor House.