Online Gambling Operator Convicted of Murder after Sex Offender Charges

An Illegal Online Gambling Operator Murders Business Associate Over Debt

Posted on: September 13, 2023, 07:20h.

Last updated on: September 13, 2023, 07:20h.

Darnell Lucifer Pierce, Leslie Grace Ahart, Mubarek Alnajar
Darnell Lucifer Pierce, pictured on his arrest in 2007 on suspicion of the rape and murder of Leslie Grace Ahart of which he was controversially acquitted. (Image: Henry H Barios)

Darnell Lucifer Pierce, a gambling operator from Bakersfield, Calif., has been sentenced to 53 years to life in prison for the first-degree murder of his business partner, Mubarek Alnajar. Pierce committed the crime due to a financial disagreement, as Alnajar owed him money.

This is not the first time Pierce has faced murder charges. Back in 2007, he was arrested for the shooting of Leslie Grace Ahart but was controversially acquitted.

Ahart’s body was found with a single gunshot wound to the head in the parking lot of Subaru School in Bakersfield. Although Pierce’s DNA was found in Ahart’s mouth, the evidence was deemed inconclusive in proving his guilt for the rape and murder charges.

Motives and Details of the Alnajar Killing

Darnell Lucifer Pierce has an extensive criminal record that includes indecent exposure and battery charges.

On January 13, 2021, Pierce arranged a meeting with his business partner, Mubarek Alnajar, in an alley in southwest Bakersfield. Court documents state that Pierce approached Alnajar’s vehicle and shot him in the face. Alnajar managed to stagger out of his car before collapsing and dying.

Pierce was arrested a week later and denied committing the murder, claiming that Alnajar was his friend.

“I cannot think of a more appropriate sentence than life in prison for this defendant who has been in and out of prison since 1995,” Supervising Deputy District Attorney Gina Pearl said.

Gina Pearl also highlighted that Pierce is a convicted sex offender, having been charged five times for related offenses.

Previous Criminal History

In 2010, while serving a prison term in Wasco State Prison, Pierce exposed himself several times to female staff members, including a psychologist who was conducting mental health exams.

Authorities suspect Pierce to be associated with the Country Boy Crips gang. In addition to indecent exposure, he has been convicted of felony spousal abuse, drug and alcohol possession while in jail, and failure to register as a sex offender.

Pierce is scheduled to appear in court again in February.

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