On Thursday a drug dealer and pimp was convicted in Federal court of kidnapping and beating his prostitute ex-girlfriend in May. United States District Judge William Dimitrouleas set a sentencing date for November 25. McKinley, 35, faces life in prison. Prosecution is a perfect example of the recent trend of typical state crimes being prosecuted in federal court. The over- federalization of these types of offenses is a disturbing trend because it often involves lawyers and defendants who have little or no experience in the federal court system. According to the Sun Sentinel News,
In a crime federal prosecutors said was largely caught on surveillance video, Shaun McKinley, 35, was accused of ambushing Ashlee Wilson behind a laundry mat on Johnson Street and 19th Avenue in Hollywood on May 18. Prosecutors said McKinley beat Wilson, 28, forced her into a car driven by his friend, then stopped to buy cigars at a nearby gas station.
The friend, Shaquille Antonio, 20, testified during trial that he unlocked the car door for Wilson while McKinley was in the store. She escaped. McKinley was arrested a short while later at Memorial Regional Hospital, where Wilson was taken to treat her bruises and a broken tooth.
The jury of seven men and five women deliberated for four hours over two days before reaching a unanimous guilty verdict on kidnapping and sex trafficking charges Thursday. McKinley shook his head as jurors were polled to confirm their guilty verdicts.
McKinley, who confessed to dealing drugs but denied kidnapping or beating Wilson, told jurors on Wednesday that the victim was already bruised when he showed up behind the laundromat and that he took her away to help her.
“Dark alley, heroin, bloody girl? This is a bad situation,” he said. “I just wanted to get her out of there.”
But Wilson had already testified that McKinley was responsible for her injuries. McKinley and Wilson became a couple late last year, and soon he was acting as her pimp. Wilson admitted turning to prostitution years earlier to pay for a heroin habit. By April, she decided to leave McKinley because, she said, he was beating her regularly.