Co-defendants Plead Guilty to 2015 Homicide

Harry Herbert and Shakim Lyons pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter and unlawful possession of a firearm, respectively, for their role in the death of 23-year-old Dwayne Gene Dillard on the 2600 block of Douglass Place, SE on Independence Day.

The prosecution agreed to drop the codefendants’ remaining charges, which included second-degree murder. Contingent upon Judge Ronna Beck’s approval, Herbert could be sentenced to 11 years in prison and Lyons could be sentenced to two years in prison.

The prosecution said that although Lyon’s plea offer is below the mandatory minimum, it is appropriate because he recently accepted plea offers in other cases. The prosecution said the plea offers in his other cases amounted to five and a half years in prison.

According to court documents, on July 4, 2015, an altercation between two groups of individuals escalated into a gun battle. A witness said Herbert, 31, shot first. The witness also said that during the shootout, Lyons, 29, left briefly and returned with a gun, firing at another defendant, Jonathan Taylor, and an unnamed individual who were on opposite sides of the shootout.

Police arrested four suspects, Herbert, Lyons, Taylor and James Coffield.

Coffield, 27, pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter while armed in November. He was sentenced to 7.5 years in prison. Taylor, 27, pleaded guilty in August. He is scheduled to be sentenced on Jan. 28, 2019.

Editors Note: When the co-defendant’s waived their rights to a pre-sentencing investigation Dec. 4, Herbert was sentenced to 11 years in prison and Lyons was sentenced to two years in prison.

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