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Boro man found guilty in 2006 killing
Rico Mikell convicted in slaying of man in what police called a drug-related shooting
Rico MichaelWeb
Frederico Shunard Mikell

            A Bulloch County jury found Frederico Shunard Mikell guilty Friday of several charges stemming from a shootout and homicide on Orange Street in the fall of 2006.

            After a drug-related shootout and armed robbery Oct.  14, 2006, Corey Oneil Walker, 21, was killed by two shots from a semi-automatic weapon. Two others were injured.

              After two days of trial, the jury deliberated three hours before finding Mikell, 32, Grady Street Extension, guilty of 11 out of 22 counts, said Ogeechee Judicial Circuit Assistant District Attorney Daphne Jarriel, who prosecuted the case.

            Mikell is one of four men charged in the murder. Each suspect was tried separately, she said.

            Jurors found Mikell guilty of felony murder, four counts of armed robbery, and six counts of aggravated assault. 

            "A person can be charged with felony murder when someone is unlawfully killed during the commission of a felony act," Jarriel said.

            Although Mikell has a Statesboro address, he moved to Waycross in 2006, where he met the other three defendants — Kendall Worthy,22;  Marcus Maurice Benbow, 41; and Bryan Lazarus Hughley, 37, all of Waycross, she said.

            "Mikell is originally from Statesboro and the evidence at trial was that he knew all six victims," she said. 

            All four suspects were charged in the shooting in an Orange Street home Oct. 14, 2006 that left Walker dead and two others wounded.

            Walker died of gun shot wounds from an AK47.  James Williams and Chalandria McClouden were also shot - Williams three times, once by an AK47 and twice with a pistol, Jarriel said. McClouden  was shot in the back and legs with the AK47.

           Evidence in the trial showed "Rico Mikell had organized the trip to Statesboro with Bryan Hughley, Marcus Benbow, and Kendall Worthy," she said. "Once in Statesboro, Mikell and the others went to several locations familiar to Mikell attempting to buy drugs.  The group’s last stop was  ... Orange  Street."

            During the trial, Williams testified several people were gathered at his sister’s home to play a dice game called C-LO.  While they were playing, "Rico Mikell stopped by the residence to visit with Corey Walker for a few minutes. Shortly after Mikell left, there was a second knock on the door and when Williams opened the door a man unknown to Williams, but later identified to be Marcus Benbow, stuck a pistol through the opening of the door and said 'You know what it is'" Jarriel said.

            Others testified about hiding from the shooters and one woman described to jurors how she saw Benbow "scooping money up off the floor that had been bet during the dice game," she said.

Police investigate, testify

            Jarriel said "the entire CID (Criminal Investigative Division) of the Statesboro Police Department worked on the case until all four suspects were apprehended."

              Sgt. James Winskey, crime scene investigator for the police department, testified about the crime scene, while Statesboro Police  Sgt. Rob Bryan testified about  conducting an interview with Mikell after he had been taken into custody. 

             Jurors viewed a video tape of the interview in which Mikell admitted that he had participated in the armed robbery, she said.

            During closing arguments, Jarriel argued that Mikell was the one who organized the trip to Statesboro to buy drugs, and "took the group to ... Orange Street and knocked on the door of the residence enabling the two gunman to get inside the home."

            Robert Persse, public defender for the Ogeechee Judicial Circuit, represented Mikell.

            Mikell will appear Tuesday before Judge John R. Turner for sentencing.

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