Convicted of murdering Harvey teen, Ivory Franklin sentenced to life again in ‘Ramos’ retrial

A Jefferson Parish judge on Tuesday (July 18) sentenced Ivory Franklin to life in prison plus 40 years for his convictions of murder and attempted murder.

It brings to two the number of times that Franklin, 25, has been convicted and sentenced for killing Reginald Black, 17, in Harvey seven years ago, and trying to kill Black’s 15-year-old nephew. The trio, who were close friends, were walking to a convenience store about 3 a.m., when Franklin brandished a pistol and shot Black in the back of his head.

In 2018, a non-unanimous Jefferson Parish jury convicted Franklin as charged of second-degree murder and attempted second-degree murder for the crimes. However, because of the jury’s non-unanimity, Franklin received a new trial after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in its 2020 decision, Ramos v. Louisiana, that non-unanimous verdicts are unconstitutional.

Franklin was convicted again in March, this time by a unanimous jury. And for a second time, 24th Judicial District Judge Donnie Rowan sentenced Franklin to mandatory life in prison for the second-degree murder of Black, and to 40 years in prison for the attempted second-degree murder of the 15-year-old.

“I don’t know why an individual would kill someone who was like a brother to them,” Judge Rowan told Franklin in handing down the consecutive sentences.

Franklin was 18 years old in May 2016, when he shot Black in the back of his head as they walked along the drainage canal bank in Harvey’s Woodmere subdivision. The 15-year-old ran for his life while Franklin shot at him, too. That teenager was able to alert a nearby homeowner, who called the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office.

Assistant District Attorneys Douglas Rushton and Stephen Downer prosecuted Franklin.