Originally created 09/07/02

Man is convicted of slaying

Tommie Tennyson's attempt to blame a man's brutal death on another failed Friday when Mr. Tennyson was convicted of felony murder.

At the conclusion of a three-day Richmond County Superior Court trial, Mr. Tennyson, 21, was found guilty in the July 12, 2001, murder of 39-year-old Robert Allan King.

According to witnesses who testified this week, Mr. Tennyson was angry that Mr. King had attempted to open the door of a Chevrolet Blazer when both men visited the same trailer home at Milledgeville and Kissingbower roads.

The two men hadn't known each other, but within moments of exchanging words that night Mr. Tennyson used the Blazer to hit Mr. King two times and then, as Mr. King lay on the ground, run over his body twice.

Mr. Tennyson testified Thursday that the driver who killed Mr. King was Brandon Tate. The Blazer was owned by Mr. Tate's mother, and Mr. Tennyson and Mr. Tate were together that night, Mr. Tennyson said.

But Mr. Tate testified earlier this week that Mr. Tennyson was the killer. Another witness, Donnie Johnson, who saw Mr. Tennyson shortly after Mr. King was killed, testified that Mr. Tennyson told him that he "had to rough up a guy."

Mr. Tennyson's own words to a sheriff's investigator returned as evidence against him, placing him at the scene. When informed he was being charged with murder just hours after Mr. King was killed, Mr. Tennyson said he didn't kill the man, who he said had tried to rob him.

Mr. Tennyson has been held without bond since his arrest. He faces a mandatory life sentence.

Reach Sandy Hodson at (706) 823-3226 or shodson@augustachronicle.com.


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