Court

A jury has the case involving the death of 18-year-old Quentavious Arrion Reese and will continue deliberations today.

Anthony Davon Parker returned to the courtroom of Fifth Judcial Circuit Court Judge Steve Perryman on Wednesday where Parker stands trial on reckless murder charges related to Reese’s March 2017 death. 

The State of Alabama through the Fifth Judicial Circuit District Attorney’s Office rested its case Tuesday afternoon. Wednesday was Parker’s chance to present his case if he wanted to with the help of his attorney Emory Anthony.

“The defense rests,” Anthony told the court Wednesday morning. “We are not going to call any witnesses.”

Perryman called Anthony and Parker to the bench to make sure Parker knew he had a right to present a defense with witnesses and take the stand in his own defense if he wanted to.

Both sides presented closing arguments in an attempt to get the jury to see the evidence the way the defense or prosecutors see things.

Assistant district attorney Kevin Hall said Parker’s statement from the day after the shooting two and a half years ago only puts Parker as the trigger man.

“He doesn’t put a gun in anybody else’s hand,” Hall said.

Fifth Judicial Circuit District Attorney Jeremy Duerr wants the jury to find Parker guilty of reckless murder.

“(Parker) caused the death of Quen Reese,” Duerr said. “His actions of pointing the gun, pulling the trigger caused the death of Quen. If you stand at the side of the road and shoot across the road, you are accountable for what happens.”

Anthony told the jury in his closing argument for Parker’s defense there was no gross misconduct by Parker to elevate things beyond an accident.

“This case is about a lack of evidence,” Anthony said. “You have not heard any evidence that he totally disregarded human life.”

Anthony even highlighted the group shooting guns that day changed from shooting into the woods to shooting across a road into a hill because houses were beyond the trees they were shooting at.

Anthony also pointed out Parker’s cooperation in showing police where the gun was and going to the police department almost immediately after the shooting on Robinson Road.

“He voluntarily came down there,” Anthony said. “He voluntarily came to the police department to tell them what happened.”

Parker was indicted for reckless murder but Anthony and Duerr argued Wednesday over what the jury should be allowed to consider for charges. Both agreed the jury should be allowed to consider the lesser included charge of manslaughter, but Duerr disagreed with Anthony’s assertion criminally negligent homicide should be an option as well.

“Firing a gun across a public road is intentional,” Duerr told Perryman. “He knew there was a risk. (Parker) stated in his statement he saw the car coming and stopped then fired again after the car passed the house.”

Perryman ruled in favor of Anthony’s argument to allow the jury to consider criminally negligent homicide.

If convicted of reckless murder, a Class A felony, Parker could face 10 years to life in prison. If convicted of manslaughter, a Class B felony, Parker could face two to 20 years in prison. If convicted of criminally negligent homicide, a Class A misdemeanor, Parker could face up to one year in prison. The jury can also acquit Parker.

Parker has been in jail since September 2018 when his bond was revoked for picking charges of reckless endangerment, carrying a concealed weapon and possession of a controlled substance in Jacksons Gap.

A jury of six white females, two black females, three black males and one white male will return to the jury room of the Alexander City Courthouse Annex at 9 a.m. today to continue deliberations.

Cliff Williams is a staff writer for Tallapoosa Publishers.