Man sentenced to prison for fatally stabbing sister’s boyfriend


Jzell Gilbert

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CENTENNIAL, Colo. — A man has been sentenced to prison for fatally stabbing his sister’s boyfriend in the Aurora home they shared, the 18th Judicial District Attorney’s Office said Monday.

Jzell Gilbert, 29, was sentenced last week to 72 years after being convicted in April of second-degree murder in the death of 34-year-old David Payne.

Gilbert previously served time in prison for felony menacing, drug charges and possession of a weapon by a previous offender and was ruled a habitual offender by Judge Ben Leutwyler.

“Jzell Gilbert is a career criminal who would not have been able to murder an innocent man if he had remained in prison, a place with which he has great familiarity.” District Attorney George Brauchler said.

“A system that continues to encourage repeat, recalcitrant felons to be placed back onto our streets gambles with our safety. It has now taken four separate felony convictions, including murder, to keep us safe from this violent criminal. This is why we build prisons.”

Officers with the Aurora Police Department responded to a home on East 13th Avenue on June 23, 2017, on reports of a stabbing.

A couple had called 911 and tried to help Payne, who told them “Jzell” had stabbed him.

Payne was taken to a hospital where he was pronounced dead. He was stabbed five times, prosecutors said.

Officers went next door to where Payne lived with his girlfriend, Gilbert and other family members.

The girlfriend said she woke up and found Gilbert standing over Payne. Prosecutors said Gilbert had a knife out and told her to leave them alone.

The girlfriend left but felt “something wasn’t right” and returned, where she found Gilbert attacking Payne.

Payne got away and went to the neighbors, while Gilbert changed clothes and left the house, prosecutors said. Gilbert was arrested hours later on an RTD bus.

Gilbert has been charged with two other felonies since he has been in jail.

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