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Man pleads guilty to obstruction charges related to death of UMD coach's son

Posted at 5:41 PM, Sep 14, 2023
and last updated 2024-02-01 15:49:56-05

BALTIMORE — John Willie Kennedy, Jr. has pleaded to guilty to federal obstruction charges related to the 2017 death of Meiko Locksley.

Locksley, the son of Maryland Terps head football coach Michael Locksley, was found dead outside his Columbia home six years ago.

On September 3, 2017, Howard County Police responded to the 5500 block of Harpers Road in reference to a shooting.

When they arrived, they found Locksley on the ground with a gunshot wound. He was taken to Shock Trauma where he was pronounced deceased.

At the time, Kennedy lived in a townhouse row directly behind the row of townhomes where Locksley was found. Police say Kennedy called 911 and told the operator he didn't see anything and heard a loud bang.

When he went outside to investigate, he found the victim.

After police looked into Kennedy's phone records, they found that he had contact with Locksley. Kennedy admitted he "might have" sold marijuana to Locksley just before the murder, but denied knowing who shot him.

Kennedy claimed he was inside watching TV with his wife when he heard the gunshots.

Federal investigators found the murder weapon, a High Point .45 caliber firearm, in Baltimore City. They soon learned the weapon had changed hands multiple times on the streets.

A warrant was soon obtained for Google to provide geofence location data for the cellphone associated with Kennedy at the time of the murder.

Police say there were two location hits for the device at 10:03 and 10:10 p.m., both were in the parking lot in front of the row of townhouses where Locksley was found.

On April 21, 2021, Kennedy testified before the federal grand jury investigating Locksley's murder.

Kennedy stated Locksley came to his house for a marijuana sale and it happened in Kennedy's doorway, not outside. He then stated that he didn't know if Locksley stayed in the area after the drug deal.

Kennedy said he heard a shot, looked by the window and said, "wasn't nothing goin on."

He later testified, after he heard the second shot, he went outside and saw the victim lying on the ground.

Federal investigators learned all these details weren't true. A witness told investigators Kennedy was in fact outside shortly before Locksley was shot.

On August 19, 2022, Kennedy admitted to lying during the homicide investigation. In a recorded interview, Kennedy reenacted the events leading up to the shooting.

He provided the physical description of the suspect and a possible motive behind the killing police say.

According to Kennedy, Locksley previously told Kennedy (and possibly others) that the suspect was a snitch cooperating with police and warned Kennedy to be careful.

Kennedy told investigators that as he hung outside in front of the townhouses with Locksley, the suspect approached and asked why he was being called "a rat."

Moments later, Locksley was shot and killed.