Thursday, February 27, 2014
Court accepts plea in drive-by shooting
By SUE WATSON
One of the defendants in a drive-by shooting on Christmas Day 2011 pled guilty to one count manslaughter and one count drive-by shooting Tuesday of last week.
Corey Deundra Albright, 33, pled guilty to taking part in the drive-by shooting in which Derica Patterson was killed on Highway 72, following an incident at a club in the Slayden area.
Charges against three other defendants in the case were dropped the day of Albright’s guilty plea, according to the district attorney’s office.
Circuit court judge John Gregory sentenced Albright to 20 years on Count 1, manslaughter, and 20 years on Count II, drive-by shooting. Albright had been charged with murder. The state agreed to drop seven other charges. Ten years of each sentence were suspended and the two sentences will run concurrently. Time served will be deducted from the sentence.
Albright was also sentenced to five years post-release supervision.
Before sentences were read, Lavern Eggerson, the grandmother of the victim, read a prepared statement before the court. She said the mother of Derica Davis, Carol Dye and her grandson, Derrick Patterson, were still hurting as she was. She asked the judge to give Albright the maximum sentence and “that God give us the strength to go on with our lives in a good Christian way.”
The brother of the victim had expressed a desire to make a statement, according to assistant district attorney Christine Tatum.
But, Albright’s attorney Amery Moore, objected.
Tatum said the brother, Derrick Patterson, was a victim, too, and in the car the night of the incident and could possibly offer another perspective.
“My client did not enter a plea to specifically that crime (shooting Derrick Patterson),” Moore said.
Judge Gregory said he did not know if the brother’s statement would make a difference.
“Certainly, we offer the deepest sympathy to your family,” he said to Eggerson.
He said he has prosecuted many murder cases and negotiated many pleas in his career, since beginning in 1977.
The court looks at the facts in the case and what the court thinks it can prove, he said. He said he had lots of experience and judgement in making recommendations.
“I’m ready for sentencing,” he said.
Eggerson said she was satisfied with the sentencing and thinks the family can put the incident behind them.
“I just wanted justice to be served,” she said. “I feel like it was served.”
Judge Gregory had stern warnings for Albright. He said if Albright did not abide by his parole or got into any more trouble, he would have to serve a life sentence for murder.
“You have got to be an extraordinary citizen,” the judge said, “and commit no offense and avoid places of disreputable character. You must report to the probation officer, find suitable employment, remain in a specified area while on probation, support your dependents, and take chemical and drug tests.”
Albright answered in the affirmative to each of the judge’s warnings.
Other individuals, in the car that was showered with bullets in the incident, included Darius Gross, Derrick Patterson, Tyrone Guy, Marcus Harris and Jasmyne Brown.
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