Two men convicted in Lakewood Masonic Lodge killings

LAKEWOOD - Jurors have convicted two men indicted for the murders of two teens fatally shot during a birthday party at the Lakewood Masonic Lodge almost three years ago.Izac McCloud, 19, was found guilty last week of two counts of second-degree murder, said deputy district attorney Emily Spear. Jurors, who deliberated for nearly five days, also convicted McCloud of 46 counts of assault with a firearm. Jurors found true allegations that he personally and intentionally discharged a gun causing great bodily injury and death to victims Breon Taylor, 15, and Dennis Moses, 17. Allegations of personal use of a firearm also were found true, but a special circumstance allegation of multiple murders was found not true. Judge Mark Kim said McCloud will be sentenced Oct. 7 at Long Beach Superior Court. He faces a maximum prison term of more than 200 years to life. On Tuesday, the same jury convicted Jonzel Stringer, 22, of second-degree murder and 46 counts of attempted murder. Jurors, who deliberated for seven days, found true an allegation that a principal was armed during the commission of the robberies. An allegation that the attempted murders were willful, deliberate and premeditated was found not true. Stringer will be sentenced Nov. 16 and faces 198 years to life in state prison. On Jan. 19, 2008, more than 400 people showed up at a birthday party for twin brothers after information about the party was posted on an Internet website. The Lakewood Masonic Lodge holds only about 100 people and the party was closed when a capacity crowd was reached, authorities said. Stringer allegedly got into a fight inside the lodge, came outside, and purportedly told McCloud to shoot. Standing just outside a window, McCloud fired a 9mm semiautomatic handgun 10 times at partygoers inside, the prosecutor said. Moses and Taylor were both shot in the head and killed. One other teenager was shot in the leg but survived. Long Beach police arrested Stringer and McCloud a short time after the murders. Immediately following the shooting, police conducted interviews at the scene with 428 partygoers, the prosecutor said.

********** Published: September 23, 2010 - Volume 9 - Issue 23