GameStop suspects will not face death

Photo by Howard Reed

Photo by Howard Reed

CONYERS -- The death penalty is not on the table for the three Atlanta men facing murder charges in connection with last year's fatal shooting at GameStop.

The November 2010 homicide stemmed from an armed robbery of the video game store on Dogwood Drive. Store customer Adrian Snow, 40, of Stone Mountain walked in on the heist and was shot and killed. Conyers Police arrested two alleged robbers and a lookout shortly after the crime.

The men arrested were Giovannte Maddox, 27; Tron Lamar Hill, 25; and Markus Isiah Seymore, 17. They have been charged with malice murder, felony murder, three counts of armed robbery, two counts of aggravated assault, two counts of kidnapping, two counts of obstruction of a law enforcement officer and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime. Hill faces an additional charge is possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

The men will have their first appearance in Rockdale County Superior Court on Tuesday morning for an arraignment hearing before Superior Court Judge David Irwin.

District Attorney Richard Read said earlier this week that his office is still reviewing the evidence, but it would be unconstitutional for him to seek capital punishment.

"We believe the actual shooter in this case was under the age of 18, so we're barred by the U.S. Supreme Court from presenting (capital punishment)," Read said, citing a 2005 federal case.

Based on the facts and circumstances of the case, the prosecution believes there was only one shooter.

"The other two gentlemen, because of their role in the case, I can't seek the death penalty either," Read said.

Read said that he and his office evaluate every murder case to determine whether the facts and circumstances warrant seeking the death penalty. He added that seeking the death penalty is not an easy decision to make and, considering the parameters of federal law, he wants to make sure it is done right.