Homicide suspects remain in jail|Additional charges pending ongoing investigation

Published 9:35 am Saturday, December 4, 2010

Contributing Editor

Seeking indictments from the Beaufort County grand jury will be one of the next steps following the arrests of three people charged with murder in the death of Leonard Alfred Willson III of Bath.
Assistant District Attorney Tom Anglim said the investigation of the Oct. 7 beating death of Willson continues. Information and evidence gathered during that investigation will be presented to the grand jury, he said.
Arturo Lopez-Perez, 16, Martel Deval-DeAngel Weston, 22, both from Belhaven, and Domonic Kidean Farrow, 23, of Mapletown Lane in Swan Quarter, have been charged with murder in Willson’s death. Willson, a paraplegic, lived in Bath about 15 years.
Washington attorney John Bramble has been appointed to represent Lopez-Perez, according to documents on file in the Beaufort County Courthouse. Wilson attorney Randell Hughes has been appointed to represent Farrow. Greenville attorney Ernest L. Conner has been appointed to represent Weston. In a limited appearance representing Weston, Greenville attorney Donald Stroud on Nov. 24 filed a motion to reduce Weston’s bond, according to documents in the courthouse. That motion has not yet been heard by a judge.
In North Carolina, an indigent defendant in a capital trial is entitled to two court-appointed attorneys.
As of Thursday, Lopez-Perez, Weston and Farrow were in the Beaufort County Detention Center, each under a $1 million secured bond.
Additional charges are expected against Lopez-Perez, Weston and Farrow, according to a news release issued by the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office in October.
Under North Carolina law, when a prosecutor decides to proceed with a murder charge in any homicide case, he or she must submit a bill of indictment to a grand jury for its consideration. If the grand jury returns a true bill of indictment for murder, the prosecutor may accept a plea of guilty or take a defendant to trial for either first-degree murder or second-degree murder.