GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (March 10, 2014) – A verdict was reached in the Javonte Higgins double murder trial Monday.
He was found guilty on all four counts, including home invasion and a firearms charge.
Higgins killed David and Vivian Bouwman in their home in Kentwood in January 2013.
The couple’s car was later found burning in the parking lot of an apartment complex. Higgins was arrested in Chicago, weeks after the murder.
The jury, who asked a lot of questions throughout the trial, had two more this morning. Questions that led the judge to read instructions on aiding and abetting. Following that, the jury came back with a verdict within minutes.
It’s a day the Bouwmansfamily has been waiting for for more than year, and several family and friends of theirs were in court every step of the way.
Tom Kelly, the Bouwman’s son-in-law, spoke on behalf the family after court Monday, saying they felt justice was served in the memory of their parents.
While he says with the help of their faith they have forgiven Higgins, he still had some strong words for him, saying he deserves what he got.
“Javonte Higgins is the lowest form of humanity that we can have on God’s green earth, he has a total disregard for life and property of others and shows no remorse at all for what he’s done to our family,” said Kelly.
Kelly said Monday’s verdict will allow them to have some closure in their lives as they start to heal and rebuild things again.
Val Foster, Higgins’ defense attorney, says she plans to appeal the conviction. During the trial she called for a mistrial, after a witness testified mentioning she met Higgins after ‘prison,’ Foster said that prejudiced her client beyond repair.
Higgins is set to be sentenced in April.