Court Cases I WCTV Eyewitness News: Tallahassee, Thomasville, Valdosta

Guilty Verdict in Mothers Day Shooting

By: Julie Montanaro;Danielle Sommerfeld Email
By: Julie Montanaro;Danielle Sommerfeld Email

UPDATED 12.20.2012, 8:23pm - Worthey has been found guilty on count 1 of murder, guilty on count 2, attempted murder, and guilty on count 3, attempted armed robbery with firearm.


UPDATED 12.20.2012, 6:03pm - A jury is now deliberating in a Tallahassee murder trial.

The two men accused of killing Maricus Deshazier both took the stand and accused each other of pulling the trigger. Now it's up to the jury to decide who it believes.

Darrius Worthey took the stand Thursday and denied having anything to do with the robbery or murder of Maricus Deshazier.

Deshazier was gunned down in his own car in front of the Walker Ford Community Center in May 2011.

"I'm walking towards him. I hear two loud pops. I'm not sure they aint shots, but I'm pretty sure it was gunshots," Worthey said.

Worthey claims he saw his friend and co-defendant Vishuntavious Sutton get out of the car with a back pack and take off running.

He says after seeing lots of blood and a man slumped over inside he ran too and later lied to police ... telling them he was never there at all.

"Why'd you tell them that?" defense attorney David Collins asked.

"I thought I was going to be accused of something I absolutey had nothing to do with," Worthey said.

"So you told them a lie?"

"Yes, sir."

Worthey's story is totally different from the one told by Vishuntavious Sutton.

Sutton testified Wednesday that the two men planned to rob Deshazier and Worthey wound up shooting him during a struggle over the gun.

The jury started deliberating at about three o'clock this afternoon. We'll keep you posted on a verdict.


UPDATED 12.20.12 4:43pm by Julie Montanaro

The jury started deliberating at 3pm this afternoon.

WCTV will keep you posted on the verdict.


UPDATED 12.20.12 10:30am by Julie Montanaro

Darrius Worthey is taking the stand to testify in his own defense.

Worthey is accused of the May 2011 murder of Maricus Deshazier.

Worthey testified he didn't shoot anyone that day.

He says he met Vishuntavious Sutton in prison and the two saw each other every day in the Holton Street projects.

Worthey says Sutton called him that afternoon and said he was in trouble. Worthey says a friend dropped him off at Walker Ford.

He says he saw Sutton get in the back seat of his car. He said he was walking toward the car when he heard two loud pops. "I'm pretty sure they were gunshots," Worthey said.

He says Sutton got out of the back seat with a back pack and took off running.

Worthey says he went up to the car to see what was going on and saw a guy slumped over and a lot of blood. Then he ran.

"I was scared. I didn't know what to do," Worthey said.

Worthey admitted he lied to police when he told them he wasn't at Walker Ford that day.

I told him I wasn't there because I didn't want to be accused of something I had absolutely nothing to do with, Worthey said.

How do we know you're telling the truth now? His lawyer asked.

"My life is on the line," he said.

The state is not seeking the death penalty.


UPDATED 12.20.3012 9:30am by Julie Montanaro

The state has rested its case against Darrius Worthey.

The defense has not yet revealed whether Worthey will testify.


UPDATED 12.19.2012 by Julie Montanaro

A botched drug deal outside a Tallahassee community center ended in gunfire and murder.

Now the accused triggerman - Darrius Worthey - is on trial. This afternoon, his accused accomplice took the stand and testified against him.

Darrius Worthey is accused of slipping into the backseat of Maricus Deshazier's car, trying to rob him and then shooting and killing him.

Wednesday, the man facing murder charges with him, Vishuntavious Sutton, took the stand. He testified that the two men planned to rob Deshazier, not kill him.

"I seen Maricus jump over the seat and try to get the gun from Darrius and like he lost control, lost control of the gun. They was fighting for the gun," Sutton said.

Sutton said they initially planned to sell Deshazier some marijuana and set up a meeting in the parking lot of the Walker Ford Community Center. but he admitted on the stand that he and Worthy didn't bring any drugs with them. He says Worthey just brought a back pack with a revolver inside.

Sutton says he got out of Deshazier's car and Worthey got in. Deshazier's younger brother Christopher was in the front seat too.

"When he started shooting, my brother's weight, all his weight just dropped on me," Christopher Deshazier said.

"Right then did you know whether or not your brother had been shot?"

"I knew he was shot."

Defense attorneys claim Christopher Deshazier never mentioned anyone except Vishuntavious Sutton to police at the scene.

"Why did you change your story and blame it on this gentleman?" defense attorney David Collins asked. "Why?" "Who are you trying to protect."

Deshazier said he didn't mention Worthey because he didn't know his name at the time.

The shooting took place on Mother's Day 2011. The assistant supervisor at the community center says there were children inside getting ready for a mother's day program.

Testimony will continue tomorrow.


UPDATED 12.19.2012 by Julie Montanaro

Maricus Deshazier was shot and killed in the drivers seat of his own car on Mother's Day 2011. His brother Christopher was shot as he got out of the car and ran. He survived.

Darrius Worthey is now on trial for murder and attempted murder. Co-defendant Vishuntavious Sutton will be tried at a later date and is expected to testify against Worthey.

Prosecutors intend to call Christopher Deshazier to testify. He told them Worthey got into the car and said "Give me all you've got" and then hit Maricus Deshazier on the head twice with a gun. Prosecutors say both brothers were shot in the struggle that followed.

All this happened in the parking lot of the Walker Ford Community Center. Assistant supervisor Aeshah Jefferson testified she was in the parking lot when she heard what sounded like firecrackers. She said there were children in the center and she ran inside to lock down the center.


UPDATED 7.12.2011 by Julie Montanaro

Court records show and prosecutors confirm that they are seeking the death penalty against Darrius Worthey and Vishuntavious Sutton in the murder of Maricus Deshazier.

Deshazier was shot and killed in the Walker Ford Community Center parking lot in May. His brother was also hurt.

Prosecutors have filed a notice with the court that they intend to seek the death penalty and say the two are eligible for enhanced penalties under 10-20-life and the prison releasee reoffender act.

The prison releasee reoffender act allows judges to impose harsher penalties against folks who commit new crimes within three years of being released from prison.

Department of Corrections records show Worthey was released from prison in January 2011 after serving time for grand theft and grand theft auto. DOC records also show Sutton served time for robbery and cocaine possession and was released from prison April 30, 2011. Just one week before Deshazier's murder.


[UPDATE] 5-8 5:30pm -

Tallahassee Police say they believe 26-year-old Maricus Deshazier's death was drug related. Family members say he was not perfect, but didn't deserve to be gunned down in the street.

Helen Deshazier is trying to deal with her son's death the best way she knows how: by carrying on with her normal daily activities and trying to be strong for the two children he left behind, two year old son Maricus Jr., and one year old daughter Marika.

Helen says, "The thing is his children have to come up without him. That's the biggest problem."

Toby Deshazier is Maricus' Uncle. He says, He was a good person and he didn't bother nobody and if he could help you he would."

26-year-old Maricus Deshazier was gunned down Saturday afternoon near the Walker Ford Community Center on the corner of Pasco and Tucker streets. Arrest papers say the Deshazier brothers were sitting in the car, in the middle of a drug deal, when Worthey pulled out a gun. There was a struggle and Maricus DeShazier was shot in the chest and killed.

He was with his brother, 20-year-old Christopher Deshazier. A bullet grazed Christopher's shoulder but Maricus was shot in the chest and died at the scene. His brother had to make that dreadful call to his mother.

"Then he called back and said mom he's gone. Hurry up, hurry up," says Helen.

21-year-old Darrius Worthey and 20 year old Vishuntavious Sutton are charged with murder and attempted murder.

"I wish I had've been there because he would've been gone too. Cause I wouldn't have let him get away," says Helen.

Still, she says her son will live on through his two children. Especially his daughter, who she says has her dad's same tough spirit.

Darrius Worthey is being held at the Leon County Jail without bond. And at last word, Vishuntavious Sutton had not been booked yet.

Deshazier's family is planning a funeral this Saturday in Havana, but they're not sure of all the details yet.


UPDATE 5-9-2011 4:55pm

Another suspect, Vishuntavious Sutton has been arrested by members of TPD’s Career Criminal Unit and the US Marshals Florida Regional Fugitive Task Force for the murder of Marcus Deshazier. He was located at the Florida Department of Corrections probation office on Blountstown Highway. Though this Probable Cause Affidavit lists Worthey, the PC for Sutton is the same.

The probable cause has been attached.


[UPDATE] 5-9 11am -Darrius Worthey made his first appearance before a judge this morning. Judge Nina Ashenafi-Richardson appointed him a public defender and ordered him held without bond.

Tallahassee police say they believe the incident is drug-related.

Funeral services for Marcius Deshazier will be this Saturday in Havana.


(UPDATE) 5/8/11 by Danielle Sommerfeld 8:34PM

Authorities have charged a man for the shooting death that happened on The south side of Tallahassee yesterday afternoon.

It's not the Mother's Day Helen Deshaizer was planning to have just two days ago, but from what I can tell the suspects arrest has added some relief to her sad day.

21-year old Darrius Worthey was arrested by Tallahassee police around 3 o'clock this morning.

He is now charged with first degree murder for killing 26-year-old Marcius Deshazier and attempted murder of 20-year-old Christopher Deshazier who was grazed in the shoulder by a bullet.

The brothers were gunned down yesterday near Pasco and Tucker Streets.

Christopher Deshazier says, his brother died after being shot in the chest.

Helen Deshazier, Victims Mother says, "Happy... I wish that I was the one that got him. I hope they give him the death penalty. He deserves it, I wish they do to him what he did to my son so he can feel that same pain."

Worthey has been booked into the Leon County jail. His bond has not yet been set.


UPDATE 5-8-11 11:30AM

TPD Release:

Sunday, May 8 at approximately 3:00AM, 21 year-old- Darrius Worthey was arrested by the Tallahassee Police Department’s Career Criminal Unit in connection with yesterday’s shooting death of 26 year-old Maricus Deonte Deshazier.

Worthey was taken into custody without incident and transported to the Leon County Jail.

Worthey has been charged with First Degree Murder and Attempted Murder.


Tallahassee, FL -The following is a press release from the Tallahassee Police Department:

On May 7, at approximately 3:30PM, the Tallahassee Police Department responded to the report of a shooting at 2301 Pasco Street, Walker Ford Park. Officers arrived on scene discovering two individuals had been shot.

As a result of the shooting 26-year-old, Maricus Deonte Deshazier, succumbed to his injuries and a second victim sustained non-life threatening injuries and was transported to the Tallahassee Memorial Hospital.

This incident was not related to any activities occurring at the park.

The investigation is on-going and more information is will be provided.

Anyone with any information is asked to contact the Tallahassee Police Department at (850) 891-4200 or Crime Stoppers at (850) 574-TIPS (8477).


Tallahassee, FL--by: Danielle Sommerfeld

A mother says her son was shot and killed Saturday afternoon and now she will have a heart breaking mother's day.

The Tallahassee Police Department along with FAMU police are working a possible shooting.

It happened near the corner of Pasco Street and Tucker Street.

Helen Deshazier told WCTV what her 20-year-old son Christopher says happened.

She says, someone tried to rob two sons and her 26-year-old son Maricus was shot in the chest and died on scene. Christopher's shoulder was grazed by a bullet but she says he is okay.

Helen Deshazier, the victims Mother says,"I know he's in a better place, he's with God. (crying) ... He's Free (crying)."

The Tallahassee Police Department hasn't confirmed any details about the shooting.

We will bring you more information as it becomes available


Tallahassee, FL-- Saturday afternoon around 3 PM, mother Helen Deshazier says her two sons Marcius, 29-years-old, and Christopher, 20-years-old, were walking near Pasco Street . She says they were talking about their Mother's Day plans when an attempted robbery occurred.

Deshazier says that Marcius was shot during the attempt, and she believed he died instantly. She says that Christopher was grazed by a bullet on the shoulder, but believes he will be okay.

Marcius's mother says he is survived by two children at one and two-years of age.

Police have not confirmed anything at this time and there is no reported suspect.

We will bring you more information as it becomes available.


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