Man convicted of murder

Published 11:08 am Thursday, September 30, 2010

COURTLAND—A Southampton County jury in 40 minutes on Wednesday convicted a Newsoms man of a 2009 murder at a Courtland apartment complex and recommended he spend the rest of his life in prison.

Troy Mayfield, 29, was found guilty of first-degree murder in connection with the shooting death of Brandon Keith Turner, 20, on March 3 on Oak Trail.

Southampton County Commonwealth’s Attorney Eric Cooke said in court Mayfield’s half-brother, Eric Parker, had been charged with shooting Turner in 2008 at the same apartment complex.

Cooke said Mayfield shot Turner to keep him from testifying against Parker.

“He killed him a month before Brandon Turner was going to come back in here and testify against Eric Parker for shooting him in the eye,” Cooke said.

Mayfield testified he was living in Newport News and wasn’t in Courtland on the night of the shooting.

Michael Rosenberg, Mayfield’s court-appointed attorney, said the case against his client was reliant upon the testimony of inmate witnesses, who were looking for a break.

“You know they’ve got reasons to lie,” Rosenberg told jurors.

He said Turner had an argument with another man at the apartment complex on the night of the murder and insisted his client didn’t go to Newport News to hide out after the shooting, as one witness testified.

“If he’s going to run, they’re going to bring him back from somewhere a lot farther than Newport News,” Rosenberg said.

A judge will formally sentence Mayfield at a later date.

Cooke said he was “very grateful” for the jury’s verdict.

“It sends a good message to the criminal element that this type of intimidation and violence will not be tolerated,” he said.