Tuesday, March 19, 2013
It took a jury two-and-a-half hours of deliberations to find Tamar Bryant, 19, guilty of the 2011 murder of 26-year-old Deon Myers.
After the guilty verdict was announced, Judge Larry Hyman sentenced Bryant to 35 years in prison. He must serve at least 80 percent of the sentence before he is eligible for parole.
Myers was shot in the face while he was at the Ghost Den Club on Jackson Village Road in Plantersville on March 15, 2011.
After Myers trial concluded, 21-year-old Brandon Cheek entered a plea of guilty to the charge of accessory after the fact of murder in connection with the same killing. He was sentenced to nine years in prison.
During her opening remarks on Tuesday in the Bryant trial, Assistant Solicitor Erin Bailey said there were two different men with guns at the club on the night of Myers’ death.
According to Bailey and other testimony Tuesday, Deon Myers was in the club where his brother Terrell Myers was working.
Bailey and Terrell Myers both told the jury 33-year-old Lavern Holmes of Georgetown came into the club with a shotgun.
Terrell Myers testified Holmes went straight to his brother who was hiding behind a bathroom door.
Holmes, according to Myers, did not shoot his brother because Holmes’ cousin intervened and calmed things down.
Minutes later, Myers testified, a man with a red bandana over his face walked into the club and pulled out a handgun and shot his brother. He said he could not identify the shooter since his face was covered.
In later testimony, one of the other co-defendants — Cameron Green, 23, of Conway — testified Holmes was wearing a red bandana when he entered the club. Green said he did not see the shooting occur. He said he turned himself into police in an effort to clear his name.
Myers testified after his brother was shot, he sat on the floor holding him until EMS arrived.
The jury also viewed a 40 minute video of the interrogation of Bryant which was conducted by former County Investigator Clint Busbee.
In the video, Bryant is seen and heard saying he shot Myers in retaliation for an incident which allegedly occurred in Hemingway in 2007. Bryant told Busbee Myers had shot at him and others.
Hazard pointed out, during his cross examination of Busbee, Bryant was only 13-years-old in 2007. Busbee, when asked, said he was never able to find a police report or anything to corroborate the Hemingway incident claim.
While the state says it was Bryant behind the mask, his attorney, Ron Hazard, says evidence will show the involvement of Holmes and Green in the death.
Michael Thacker, evidence custodian for the Sheriff’s Office testified items collected from the car the suspects were in after the shooting included a red bandana which was mixed in with other items belonging to Green.
Before the verdict was reached Wednesday, the jury asked to hear a 15 minute portion of the interrogation again. After that it took them about an hour to come to a decision.
Trials for the others charged with murder: Holmes and Kawaun Montique Myers, 26, will take place in May. A trial date for Green has not yet been set.
Read more on the trial in Friday's Georgetown Times.