Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Pasco gang member gets back-to-back life sentences for murders

James Barron, seen Friday with attorney Bjorn Brunvand, pleaded guilty so the state wouldn’t seek the death penalty.


James Barron, seen Friday with attorney Bjorn Brunvand, pleaded guilty so the state wouldn’t seek the death penalty.

NEW PORT RICHEY — A Holiday gang member received back-to-back life sentences when he pleaded guilty Friday to murdering two men.

James "Pimpin" Barron, 24, pleaded guilty to killing Bloods gang member Kamar Allen on Aug. 21, 2011, and Cedric Saunders on Dec. 9, 2011, in what authorities described as a drug deal gone bad. Barron also pleaded guilty to solicitation of murder in a separate case.

Family and friends of the men murdered watched as Circuit Judge William Webb delivered the sentences. Saunders' grandfather, Kalomo Kamu, stood and spoke to Barron when it was done.

Kamu looked Barron in the eye as he told him he had devastated two families, all without any indication of remorse or empathy.

"You got a hard road ahead," Kamu said.

Prosecutor Chris Sprowls said Barron agreed to plead guilty on the condition the state wouldn't seek the death penalty for Allen's murder.

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

Deputies said Barron shot and killed Saunders after he met him to buy cocaine. Barron told a witness in the case he shot Saunders four times and cleared the scene of evidence, authorities say.

While Barron was in jail, he was also charged with Allen's murder. Deputies said Barron suspected Allen of stealing money from his mother and confronted him. They later went together to an open field in Holiday where Barron shot Allen, leaving him in a ditch.

The solicitation to murder charge came after authorities say Barron asked for a fellow gang member to murder a witness in both cases, through a letter to his mother while he was in jail awaiting trial on the other two murders.

Pasco gang member gets back-to-back life sentences for murders 05/30/14 [Last modified: Friday, May 30, 2014 9:41pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Yale dean on leave over offensive Yelp reviews leaves post

    Bizarre News

    NEW HAVEN, Conn. — A Yale University dean who was placed on leave over offensive reviews she posted on Yelp has left her position at the Ivy League institution, school officials said Tuesday.

  2. Federal agencies demand records from SeaWorld theme park


    Associated Press

    ORLANDO — Two federal agencies are reportedly demanding financial records from SeaWorld.

    Killer whales Ikaika and Corky participate in behaviors commonly done in the wild during SeaWorld's Killer Whale educational presentation in this photo from Jan. 9. SeaWorld has been subpoenaed by two federal agencies for comments that executives and the company made in August 2014 about the impact from the "Blackfish" documentary. 
[Nelvin C. Cepeda/San Diego Union-Tribune/TNS]
  3. The people you meet along O.J. Howard Lane


    AUTAUGAVILLE, Ala. —The screen door hangs open to Laura's Country Kitchen but the dining room is empty with no one to feed.

    OJ Howard (far right) is seen in a photo from his adolescent years at Bethesda Missionary Baptist Church in Prattville, Ala., on Wednesday, May 3, 2017. Howard served as an usher in addition to attending regular services at this church.
  4. St. Pete Pride schedule and live blog

    Special Topics

    St. Pete Pride Block Party and Night Parade: St. Pete Pride's popular parade moves to downtown St. Petersburg's scenic waterfront. The block party brings DJs, food and drinks starting at 2 p.m. The parade steps off at Fifth Ave NE and Bayshore at 7 p.m. with fireworks at 9:45 p.m. 2 p.m., North Straub Park, Fifth Avenue …

    A local business rings in Pride 2017 with some window decorations.