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RACINE — The jury sitting a homicide trial in Racine County Circuit Court heard from the investigators on Wednesday while law enforcement worked to keep order among the spectators.

Sincere Granados, 16, is charged with first-degree intentional homicide in the Sept. 3, 2021, shooting death of Jayden Cronin, 17, a senior at Racine Unified’s Turning Point Academy.

Granados was just 14 years old at the time of his arrest.

There is no known motive for the homicide. Investigators theorize the shooting was gang-related and allege that Cronin was a member of a Southside gang, the Dirty P’s, walking through a Northside neighborhood that is considered the territory of the NFL (Northside For Life).


Family and friends of both the defendant and the victim were in the gallery for the proceedings.

Emotions began to run high with the state’s first witness, Angelo Sackman, formerly with the Racine Police Department, who was the first officer on scene the night Cronin was killed.

Footage from Sackman’s body-worn camera was shown to the jury, who saw the officer approaching Cronin lying on the ground.

People in the gallery began to exchange harsh words, and the proceedings were paused while court deputies restored order.

Later, when proceedings paused for lunch, people from the gallery made their way outside where another altercation occurred as people began screaming at each other. The disturbance expanded to the area around the courthouse.

The Racine County Sheriff’s Office responded en force to disperse the groups. They were assisted by the Racine Police Department, who briefly closed Wisconsin Avenue in front of the courthouse.

After lunch, Judge Timothy Boyle told those in the gallery he watched the altercation in front of the Law Enforcement Building from his office and found it “abhorrent … completely abhorrent.”

He said anyone responsible for any further disruptions would be excluded from the courtroom during the rest of the proceedings.

Boyle told those in the gallery to behave as if they were in church.

“I need your cooperation for the benefit and integrity of this trial,” he said.

Security remained tight inside and outside of the Law Enforcement Building throughout the afternoon, but those in the gallery were subdued.

Defendant declines to settle the case

Antoinette Rich, assistant DA, started the day by informing the court the Racine County DA’s Office had offered Granados a deal to settle the case.

The offer was a reduction in charges from first-degree intentional homicide to reckless homicide in exchange for a guilty plea. If Granados had accepted the offer, all other charges would have been dismissed.

16-year-old Granados declines plea deal in Racine homicide trial
16-year-old Sincere Granados is on trial for the shooting death of 17-year-old Jayden Cronin. Granados was just 14 at the time of the shooting. – Credit: Dee Hölzel

Reckless homicide carries a potential 60-year sentence, with 40 years served in prison followed by 20 years of supervised release.

Noah Wishau, who represents Granados, said he and the defendant spoke at length about the offer.

Granados told the court, “I’m going to decline it.”

States case in chief

The prosecution’s case relies heavily on video and eyewitness testimony. The gun used in the shooting has never been found.

The jury spent much of Wednesday viewing crime-scene photos and watching the videos collected by investigators, which included videos from two businesses and one video from a home.

The videos from multiple perspectives showed the moment Cronin and an unidentified second person approach the intersection of N. Memorial Drive and Woodrow Avenue where a white Cadillac was parked.

Most of the videos are not in color and do not have sound, but the jury could see the reactions of Cronin and the second man as they backed away from the intersection.

Police theorize that was the moment the shooting started.

Cronin suddenly disappeared from view, which was the moment he fell to the ground with a shot to the back of the head, as the second person fled.

Meanwhile, chaos ensued as the passengers from the Cadillac jumped out and run away. The defendant, Granados, was the last person out of the car.

The driver, Christopher Pegues, came back, jumped into the car, and drove away – with the doors still open.

Pegues is a witness for the state. The day after the shooting, he went to the Racine Police Department, made a statement, and told investigators where they could find the Cadillac.

When investigators recovered the Caddy at an address on LaSalle Street, it had six gunshot holes in the windshield.

However, the defense replayed one of the neighborhood videos that had sound, which reflected eight shots fired – not six – which suggests the possibility there was more than one shooter.

The prosecutor suggested the possibility two of the shots went through the holes in the windshield made by previous bullets – leaving six holes instead of eight.

The trial is continuing today with civilian witnesses.

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