Tavon Taylor, street racer accused of killing 8, trial delayed

Tavon Taylor, 21, is accused of killing 8 in a street race in 2008. A jury was unable to reach a unanimous verdict in manslaughter charges. (Photo: WJLA)

A man facing vehicular manslaughter in the 2008 Accokeek street-racing tragedy had his second trial postponed.

Tavon Taylor, 21, of Waldorf, was allegedly involved in a street race Feb. 16, 2008, with Darren Bullock, 22, of Waldorf, on Rout 210/Indian Head Highway.

According to police, Taylor and Bullock were blinded by smoke from a previous street race when Bullock's vehicle--a white Crown Victoria--plowed into a crowd of about 200 people, killing eight.

The prosecution has argued that although Taylor's vehicle, a green Grand Marquis, did not strike the victims, the alleged race between Taylor and Bullock makes them both responsible for the eight deaths.

After two days of deliberation, the PG County jury found Taylor guilty of two traffic charges, speed racing and reckless driving, which carry a combined fine of $1,000.

They failed to reach a unanimous verdict in the manslaughter charges, with nine believing Taylor was guilty and three believing he was not, according to lead defense attorney J. Wyndal Gordon.

Gordon said he believes the state's case against Taylor will become more difficult as time passes, with witnesses having a harder time recalling a morning that already is two years ago.

Taylor faces a maximum of 80 years in prison if convicted.

Bullock pleaded guilty January 29 and is expected to be sentenced Tuesday to up to 15 years in jail.

Witnesses who were at the street race when Bullock's car hit the crowd, as well as an assistant medical examiner who helped perform autopsies on the victims, have given grisly accounts about the crash and gruesome fatal injuries.

The lead collision analyst for the crash, Prince George's County Police Department Cpl. Christopher Hinkson, testified Bullock's vehicle was traveling between 75 and 102 miles per hour when it hit the crowd.