Man guilty in 2018 murder of Navy chief petty officer sentenced to 30 years

Danny Ray Beard II (left) walks into court before being sentenced to 30 years in prison. (Copyright 2023 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A man convicted of killing his ex-girlfriend was sentenced Friday to 30 years in prison.

Danny Ray Beard II, was charged with second-degree murder after he was arrested for the shooting death of Andrea Washington in 2018.

Before Washington was murdered she was a service member in the Navy and a mother of three boys.

Her family and friends were inside the courtroom Friday to see the man who pleaded guilty to her killing sentenced.

When Beard walked into the courtroom he had what appeared to be a slight smirk on his face. Beard stood there quietly as the court heard from Washington’s twin brother and a former coworker in the Navy.

Teri Zehnacker worked with Washington in the Navy and talked about how you can be prepared for many things as a servicemember but no one was prepared for Washington’s murder.

“As sailors we are trained and prepared for losing our shipmates due to illness, injury and even suicide but in my 30 years of service I was never prepared for the call I received on the night of September 16, 2018, where my chief was screaming and crying ‘They killed her. Terri, do you hear me? They killed Andrea,’” Zehnacker said.

Andrea Washington (WJXT 2019)

Beard gets credit for the 4 years and 7 months of time he has already served. Beard did apologize in court and asked for the family’s forgiveness.

Police said Washington was found dead inside her Northside home hours before a hearing was scheduled on a protective order against Beard. Washington was set to deploy the following Wednesday aboard the USS Hue City.

According to the affidavit for an arrest warrant, JSO found several live bullets near her body and sent them off to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement for processing. Six DNA profiles were found on the bullets and the FDLE said it was 490,000 times more likely that the DNA was that of Beard and two of the other contributors, the warrant states.

JSO also tracked Beard’s cellphone activity, which placed him at Washington’s home during the time of Washington’s murder, according to the warrant. Beard had previously told police he wasn’t at her home that night.

Police said Beard had lived with Washington, but he moved out two weeks before she was killed.

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