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Murder trial begins in 2011 killing at club

Tuesday, Aug 5, 2014 7:55 PM
Last updated Wednesday, Aug 6, 2014 12:53 AM
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Ashley Brown didn’t really want to go out the night of Sept. 14, 2011, but she did because one of her best friends was celebrating her birthday.

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Ashley Brown, 27, was shot in the head after a shooting at the former Club 5150 in September 2011.  FILE/BIANCA CAIN-JOHNSON
FILE/BIANCA CAIN-JOHNSON
Ashley Brown, 27, was shot in the head after a shooting at the former Club 5150 in September 2011.

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She never made it home again.

The man accused of firing the fatal gunshot that killed Brown, Dachavous M. Murphy, is standing trial this week on murder and other charges.

Murphy, 22, has pleaded not guilty. The real killer, he told a Richmond County sheriff’s detective weeks after his arrest, was another man.

On Tuesday in Richmond County Superior Court, however, Stanley Curry told the jury he was positive Murphy was the man who fired multiple gunshots the night Brown died.

“I thought he was shooting at me,” Curry testified. Curry worked security that night at what was then known as Club 5150 on Deans Bridge Road. Murphy was one of the people removed from the club after fights broke out, Curry testified. The combatants started fighting again in the parking lot and Curry and other security workers broke up the fights again. He put Murphy in the passenger seat of a black car, Curry testified.

Curry remembers Murphy was wearing a striped shirt that night. He pulled up the shirt to reveal a handgun, Curry testified.

As the car passed in front of the club, Murphy fired multiple gunshots, Curry testified.

Chauntel Smally, whose birthday prompted the outing, told the jury she was trying to leave the club with Brown when someone called out “gun” and she heard shots.

“Ashley pulled me down,” Smally testified. A moment later she looked at Brown and saw Brown had been shot in the head. Smally tried to call 911, but her phone wouldn’t work.

“I wasn’t going to leave her cause she wouldn’t leave me,” Smally said of her 26-year-old friend. But another friend, worried the shooter would come back, grabbed Smally and pulled her into the bathroom.

“All we were trying to do was go home,” Smally said. “We had our keys in our hands.”

Testimony continues today.


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