DOTHAN, Ala. (WTVY) — A Houston County jury Friday deliberated about two hours before finding Kharon Davis guilty of felony murder.
Kharon Davis is accused of shooting a man to death in 2007.
“I am still in shock. I needed justice. Thank Jesus,” Betty Reaves said afterwards. Her son, Pete, was shot to death June 8, 2007.
Though the death penalty had been taken off the table as possible punishment, Davis was charged with capital murder and faced up to life in prison without parole. The all-white jury found him guilty of a lesser felony murder charge meaning he will be eligible for parole at a future date.
“There are some issues to appeal and we’re going to appeal,” defense attorney Dustin Fowler said. Though disappointed in the verdict he commended Circuit Judge Kevin Moulton for the way he presided over the trial.
The state attorney general’s office prosecuted Davis after Houston County District Attorney Pat Jones, recently elected, cited a potential conflict of interest.
“I am pleased that justice now has been delivered for the victim’s family and it is appropriate that the defendant will serve a long time in prison for the murder he committed,” said Attorney General Steve Marshall.
Davis’ case received national attention because it took over 10 years to bring him to trial. Multiple delays were for various reasons. The first judge assigned the case retired, Davis’ first attorney was removed due to what Moulton, who inherited the case, saw as a possible conflict of interest. The attorney’s son, a Dothan police officer, had been involved in the investigation.
Davis’ wanted his second attorney dismissed and a third withdrew. Fowler was part a fourth defense team.
“We don’t feel like (the prosecution) proved their case against Kharon Davis,” Patricia Mokolo of the Alabama NAACP reacted.
Davis, Kevin McCloud and Lorenzo Stacey, were arrested for Reaves death. Stacey was acquitted in 2009. McCloud, in 2011, pleaded guilty to a lesser murder charge, and received a 99-year prison sentence in a deal with prosecutors.
Davis is scheduled to be sentenced October 17.