Man Found Guilty in Club Lexx Shooting, Faces Life in Prison

A security guard at a Miami-Dade club charged with killing one man and wounding another in a 2012 shooting was found guilty Friday.

Lukace Kendle, 29, faces life in prison after a jury convicted him on charges of murder and attempted murder in the June 2012 shooting in the parking lot of Club Lexx, a popular strip club on Northwest 27th Avenue.

Kendle acted as his own lawyer and claimed self-defense in the shooting. The sentencing date was unknown.

"Because he made that decision of representing himself, the jury didn't get the full picture. And if they would have had the full picture, I think their verdict would have been different," public defender Carlos Gonzalez said.

Kijuan Byrd, 29, was killed in the shooting. Michael Smathers survived but was left paralyzed.

Kendle reportedly stated he saw the men inside a vehicle rolling a joint, and heard one of them saying they were going to kill someone.

Smathers, who testified at the trial, denied that and said they were both shot in the car.

"He is guilty. Thank you Jesus, he is guilty," Claire Bailey, Byrd's cousin, said outside the courtroom.

Contact Us