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Mon, April 22

Jury says murderer is sane
McGee faces long stretch in prison for killing GV man

KINGMAN - It took close to three and a half hours for a jury of Jack Darrell McGee's peers to find him not only guilty of murder but also sane at the time.

Seven men and five women each confirmed the first-degree murder verdict for the Golden Valley man when polled by defense attorney Carlene Lacy.

McGee, 24, was found guilty of the first-degree murder of Billy Dewayne Carlton Jr., 26, of Golden Valley, guilty of aggravated assault on Billy Dewayne Carlton Sr. and Jim Neal McGee, guilty of drive-by shooting, and guilty of discharging a firearm at a residence.

The deceased victim's family hugged and cried while the verdict was being read. Upon the jury's dismissal, the family thanked each juror for coming to a guilty verdict.

On the first-degree murder charge, McGee faces life in prison with the possibility

of parole in 25 years or natural life in prison. On the dangerous Class 3 felony aggravated assaults, he faces a maximum of 15 years on each charge.

On the dangerous Class 2 felony drive-by shooting and discharging a firearm at a residence, McGee faces a maximum of 21 years on each charge. Mohave County Judge James E. Chavez set judgment and sentencing at 9:30 a.m. on July 9.

Before the foreman of the jury delivered the verdict, Chavez addressed the jurors, explaining their decision in this case was more difficult than most cases due to the insanity defense.

"I put this in the hard range because it's rare to have this kind of case in Mohave County," Chavez said.

During the weeklong trial, prosecutor Greg McPhillips presented evidence that on Oct. 4, 2005, McGee drove to the residence in the 5700 block of Abrigo Drive, briefly talked to the victim before shooting him in the heart and leg, killing him.

McGee then opened fire on Carlton Sr. and Jim McGee, who were also in the yard at the time. Firing 18 rounds and reloading a clip into his gun after shooting Carlton Jr., Jack McGee hit Jim McGee in the wrist and elbow and missed Carlton Sr.

McGee then left the scene, driving to Davis Dam to dispose of the gun used in the shooting, but still kept his other gun in his possession. Bullhead City Police stopped McGee near the dam.

McGee later admitted to investigators he dumped the gun used in the incident over the dam. McGee also admitted to shooting at the three men during the interview, as well as shooting at a residence where he thought Carlton Jr. was on July 15, 2005.

During interviews, McGee told detectives he killed Carlton Jr. because voices in his head told him to do it.

Lacy argued during the trial that as an alleged paranoid schizophrenic, McGee imagined an elaborate gang rape that he thought was real. She added McGee said he heard voices saying he must kill Carlton Jr., who he imagined as one of the individuals involved with the rape. She didn't dispute McGee's guilt, rather his sanity.

The jurors didn't agree with the defense.


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