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A jury has found a Providence man guilty of second degree murder and illegal discharge of a firearm in the killing of a 31-year-old Smithfield man in 2021. Attorney General Peter F. Neronha announced on Thursday that Johnny Xaykosy (32) was found guilty in the murder of Nikolas DiPanni after a week-long trial.

The verdict followed Xaykosy’s guilty plea for carrying a pistol without a license and possession of a firearm by a prohibited person. He is being held without bail at the Adult Correctional Institutions, awaiting a sentencing hearing.

The murder occurred on April 22, 2021, after a drug transaction between Xaykosy and the victim, according to a press release from the Attorney General’s office. The victim and his girlfriend approached Xaykosy’s vehicle after a dispute arose, and Xaykosy fired one shot into the victim’s chest before driving away. The victim was transported to Rhode Island Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

The Attorney General’s Office, along with the Providence Police Department, led the investigation and prosecution of the case. In a statement, Attorney General Neronha emphasized the focus on gun-wielding criminals, including drug traffickers, in the fight against illegal firearms. Acting Providence Police Chief Oscar Perez also commended the work of the detectives and officers involved in bringing justice to the perpetrator of violence.