Macon – Two men were sentenced to prison Tuesday in the 2016 shooting death of Mercer University basketball player Jibri Bryan.
Damion Deray Henderson, 37, of Riverdale, pleaded guilty to armed robbery and voluntary manslaughter during a Tuesday morning hearing in Bibb County Superior Court. As part of a plea agreement, Henderson was sentenced to 40 years with the first 30 years to be served in prison. He must serve 20 years without the possibility of parole.
Jarvis Clinton Miller Sr., 27, of Macon, had previously pleaded guilty to armed robbery. He was sentenced Tuesday to 15 years in prison without the possibility of parole followed by five years on probation.
If the case had gone to trial, prosecutor Sandra Matson would have presented evidence showing:
Bryan, 23, went to the Flash Foods located at the corner of College and Forsyth streets early on the morning of Feb. 2, 2016. While there, he and Miller struck up a conversation and agreed to meet back at the store later for a drug transaction.
Phone records show Miller sent Henderson a text message saying he’d found a “sweet lick,” also known as a robbery. Forensic testing and testimony show Miller and Henderson planned to sell Bryan fake Xanax pills.
At the agreed upon meeting time, Henderson parked a white Nissan Sentra at Flash Foods and walked over to where Bryan was sitting in his Chevrolet Monte Carlo. The two talked and then Henderson returned to the Nissan. Miller got out of the Nissan and got into Bryan’s front passenger seat with the fake pills. Bryan, who’d already given Henderson money for the drugs, soon realized the pills were fake and that he was being robbed. Miller pulled out a gun and Bryan reached for a gun he had in the car. Shots were fired. Ballistic testing shows a .380-caliber bullet from Miller’s gun struck Bryan in the head and then the gun jammed. Miller, who’d also been shot, ran away. Henderson then took Bryan’s gun and shot Bryan in the neck before driving away in the Nissan Sentra.
A witness reported the Nissan’s tag number to the Bibb County Sheriff’s Office. Deputies traced the tag to a woman associated with Henderson.
Miller was captured soon after the shooting. Henderson was arrested later that day in the Atlanta area.
Speaking after the hearings, District Attorney David Cooke said, “Mr. Bryan had no business participating in a drug deal, but he certainly didn’t deserve to die. Mr. Henderson and Mr. Miller robbed us of a beloved member of our community and for that they’ll pay a hefty price for decades to come. Anyone who commits such a crime and puts so many people in danger should expect to face the same fate.”
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Contact: Amy Leigh Womack