Fatal stabbing case heads to circuit court

By: Thomas Franz | Macomb Township Chronicle | Published April 26, 2016

 Macomb Township resident Jerald Wayne Boozer-Brown Jr. appeared in the Shelby Township 41-A District Court in early April for a preliminary exam. He is facing a charge of second-degree murder.

Macomb Township resident Jerald Wayne Boozer-Brown Jr. appeared in the Shelby Township 41-A District Court in early April for a preliminary exam. He is facing a charge of second-degree murder.

Photo by Thomas Franz

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SHELBY TOWNSHIP — A preliminary examination hearing April 11 resulted in the case of a 26-year-old Macomb Township man facing a charge of second-degree murder to be bound over to Macomb County Circuit Court.

Jerald Wayne Boozer-Brown Jr. is facing charges following the death of Brian Dequan Shepard, 21, of Macomb Township, in the early morning hours of this past Valentine’s Day.

The two were reportedly in a dating relationship for about three years and had gotten into an argument the night of the incident.

Michael Williams, 22, of Eastpointe, was a witness to the alleged incident and testified during the preliminary exam at Shelby Township 41-A District Court.

While being questioned by prosecuting attorney Yasmine Poles, Williams said he used to live with both individuals previously, but was not their roommate at the time of the incident.

Williams said he was visiting the couple during the night of the stabbing. He added that the evening began with the three playing cards and video games, watching movies, and drinking alcohol while calling it a happy gathering at the couple’s Macomb Township apartment.

Soon after 10:30 p.m. that night, Williams said Shepard went to bed. Around midnight, Williams said he saw Boozer-Brown sleeping on the couch while they were watching a movie, and he told Boozer-Brown to go to bed.

Shortly after that, he heard a commotion.

“About five minutes later, Brian came storming out saying ‘He choked me, he choked me,’” Williams said.

Williams testified that Shepard said he was choked by Boozer-Brown because Shepard was on the phone with a man named Drake, an old high school friend of Shepard’s.

The two soon confronted each other in the apartment’s kitchen, as Shepard held a liquor bottle and Boozer-Brown grabbed a knife.

Williams said he got in between the two while successfully disarming Shepard, but he was unable to get the knife from Boozer-Brown. The two eventually separated, and Shepard later prepared to leave the apartment for the night.

Shepard then entered one of the apartment’s bedrooms where Boozer-Brown was at the time, and Williams said he soon heard Boozer-Brown choking Shepard again.

“I went into the room and saw Jerald on top of Brian with the knife still in his right hand,” Williams said. “As I was pulling the defendant off of Brian, Brian began to snap and lash out.”

Williams said Shepard then kicked Boozer-Brown in the face as Shepard was still lying down. Shepard was able to stand up as Williams was holding down Boozer-Brown. Williams said that Shepard then grabbed a lamp and struck Boozer-Brown with it.

Shepard then departed the bedroom for the living room with another roommate, Jonathan, who was home at the time. Williams eventually let Boozer-Brown free, but he followed him closely as Boozer-Brown walked to the living room with the knife still in his hand.

Williams said Boozer-Brown went to choke Shepard a third time, at which point Williams began calling 911.

While he was on the phone with dispatchers, Williams said he heard Shepard say that he had been stabbed.

Shortly after, Williams said Boozer-Brown claimed he did it out of self-defense.

After further questioning by Poles and defense attorney Richard Glanda, Judge Douglas Shepherd ruled that the case would be bound over to Macomb County Circuit Court.

Glanda claimed that the case shouldn’t be bound over on a count of second-degree murder due to the fact that Shepard struck Boozer-Brown with a lamp, which created an element of self-defense.

Shepherd said the evidence in the case shows that there was enough disassociation between the lamp incident and the stabbing to bind the case over to circuit court on the second-degree murder count.

At press time, Shepherd had issued a $300,000 bond, and if that was met, Boozer-Brown would be confined to a house arrest tether.

Arraignment in the case is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. May 2 before Circuit Court Judge Jennifer Faunce.

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