Franklinton Man Pleads Guilty to Manslaughter

Published 4:33 pm Monday, November 21, 2016

COVINGTON—DeMontez Martin, 20, of Franklinton, has pleaded guilty to manslaughter for shooting to death a 17-year-old male in Franklinton two years ago. District Judge Martin Coady sentenced Martin, who was 17 at the time of the shooting, to 20 years in prison with eight years suspended.

The mother of the victim and family members attended the hearing Tuesday, Nov. 15, and indicated that they support the plea agreement. Martin pleaded guilty to shooting Erick Warren in a Franklinton home on July 10, 2014. Two witnesses gave the Franklinton Police Department conflicting statements about what happened during the shooting. One of the witnesses told police that Martin brought a shotgun and a pistol with him and that Martin and Warren got into a verbal disagreement over how to replace the stock on the shotgun.

According to the witness, Martin picked up the pistol, waved it around, and pointed it at several people, before ultimately firing one shot at Warren. Martin then fled the house with his girlfriend and hid the weapons.

Martin, who turned himself in to police about five hours later, told police that Warren was like a brother to him and that the shooting was an accident. He said the pistol belonged to Warren, who was playing with it. Martin said he took the pistol from Warren, removed the clip and was trying to get the bullet out of the chamber when Warren reached for the gun. The gun went off accidentally, Martin said.