Detroit Man Convicted of Dearborn Store Owner Murder
Tanaka Wells will be sentenced on March 13 for the 2011 murder of Jay Shin.
A Wayne County jury has convicted a Detroit man in the murder of a Dearborn store owner, the Dearborn Police Department announced Friday.
Twenty-year-old Tanaka Wells was found guilty of first degree murder, as well as three counts of armed robbery and firearm use, in the March 15, 2011, slaying of Jay Shin, as well as the robbery of his Dearborn store, Sunrise Beauty Supply.
Wells is set to be sentenced on March 13 in front of Judge Lawrence Talon. With a history of previous armed robbery convictions, he is expected to receive a life sentence.
A second defendant in the case, 19-year-old Detroit resident Ronnie Lamont Matthews, plead guilty to second degree murder in January. He is expected to be sentenced to 10 to 20 years in prison as part of his plea deal with the Wayne County Prosecutor's office.
The March 15 crime took only a few days to lead to an arrest, but was one that set the east Dearborn business community on edge.
According to Dearborn police, a call came in the morning of March 15 that Sunrise Beauty Supply had been robbed, and that someone–later identified as 60-year-old Shin–had been shot.
Matthews and Wells were arrested three days later after surveillance footage led police to the men.
In May, Matthews argued before Judge Richard Wygonik in Dearborn's 19th District Court that he had little to do with the actual crime, and was in the car most of the time that Wells was inside, thus implicating Wells in the bulk of the robbery and murder of Shin.
Wells' attorney, however, argued that no one actually saw Wells shoot Jay Shin.
Dearborn Chief of Police Ronald Haddad lauded the speedy convictions.
“This senseless act united the efforts of the entire community in bringing the responsible parties to justice," Haddad said in a statement. "It is my hope that the convictions bring peace to the family of Mr. Jay Shin."