The weapon that was used to kill a woman last month was brought to a teammate by Alabama freshman basketball star Brandon Miller, according to authorities in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.
On the night that Jamea Jonae Harris, 23, was shot to death, Darius Miles texted Miller to bring him the gun, according to Tuscaloosa detective Branden Culpepper’s testimony on Tuesday.
Culpepper provided testimony at a preliminary hearing for Miles and Michael Lynn Davis, who is charged with the capital murder of Harris after he was shot and murdered on January 15 close to the campus of the University of Alabama.
The gun used in the deadly shooting was provided by Miles, who has since been kicked out of the Crimson Tide program, according to investigators’ findings in a court document, but Davis actually fired the gun.
Tuesday, Culpepper said that Miles had informed Davis of the whereabouts of his gun in Miller’s vehicle.
The Crimson Tide coach Nate Oats stated at a news conference later on Tuesday that the program was aware of Miller’s alleged connection to the issue even though Miller has not been charged with a crime. Miller has not been charged with any crimes. There is nothing we could charge [Miller] with, Tuscaloosa Chief Deputy District Attorney Paula Whitley told AL.com on Tuesday.
Both Davis and Miles wiped away tears as their mothers testified that they would ensure their sons followed the law if granted bond, but Tuscaloosa County District Judge Joanne E. Jannik later rejected that request.
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A grand jury will be consulted in this matter.
The incident took place on the Strip, a commercial area with clubs and eateries close to the Bama campus that caters to students. According to authorities, Harris was hit by a bullet when she was seated in the passenger seat of a vehicle.
The program has “completely cooperated with law enforcement the entire time,” according to Oats, who added that the “whole scenario is awful.”
When questioned about Miller reportedly giving Miles the gun, Oats replied, “We knew about it. “unable to regulate anything people do when not in practice. Nobody anticipated that would occur. There hasn’t been any trouble for Brandon, and there isn’t any trouble for him now. At the wrong place and time.”
After getting backlash on social media for his “unfortunate words,” Oats later tried to clarify them.
Oats confessed in a statement that his remarks “came across inappropriately” on Tuesday night.
Law enforcement informed us that there were additional student-athletes in the area, but they have repeatedly assured us that none of them are suspects, according to Oats. They were merely observers. We believe that everyone has been completely honest and cooperative.
I never intended to minimize the gravity of this circumstance or the tragedy that occurred that evening. My thoughts and prayers are with Jamea Harris’ family.
Miller leads the second-ranked Crimson Tide in scoring with an average of 18.7 points and 8.0 rebounds per game. He is expected to go in the top five picks in this year’s NBA draught.
Several versions of the shooting were provided by the prosecution and the defense attorneys. Whitley informed the judge that there was sufficient evidence to move forward with Miles and Davis’s prosecution.
At the hearing on Tuesday, a defense attorney hypothesized that Miles was behaving defensively when he informed Davis of the location of the pistol.
Mary Turner said that Michael Davis was given the gun for security reasons.
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