Pawtucket man sentenced to 25 years in prison for Providence murder


PAWTUCKET, R.I. (WPRI) — A Pawtucket man was sentenced to prison for shooting and killing another man two years ago in Providence’s Chad Brown housing complex.

Howard Watson, 61, pleaded guilty last week to one count of second-degree murder in the death of Mackenzie Irons, 34, according to the office of R.I. Attorney General Peter Neronha. He was sentenced to 50 years with 25 to serve at the ACI and the rest suspended with probation.

Irons died at the hospital after he was shot near the corner of Donelson and June Streets on the night of July 31, 2017. Neronha’s office said had the case gone to trial, the state was prepared to prove that Watson pulled the trigger after he and Irons got into an argument earlier in the evening.

Irons punched Watson then ran off after Watson pulled out a pocket knife, according to the AG’s office. Watson returned about 20 minutes later with a firearm, approached Irons and fired two rounds at close range, hitting Irons once.

In addition to the murder charge, Watson pleaded guilty to a felony count of carrying a firearm without a license, for which he received a 10-year sentence, which will be served concurrently.

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