A substitute Hamilton County Criminal Court judge on Monday accepted a guilty plea from DeAngelo Dews, the suspect in a 2014 Bi-Lo shooting that left a store employee hospitalized with a gunshot wound.
"Are you guilty of this offense?" Judge Curtis Smith asked Dews.
"Yes, sir," Dews replied. With seven family members watching from the back, the 20-year-old agreed to serve a six-year prison sentence for aggravated assault.
Prosecutors said Dews was arguing with Bi-Lo store employee Desmond Gearing on Sept. 12, 2014, after using the ATM machine around 9 p.m. Then Dews walked out of the store at 4011 Brainerd Road. Gearing followed moments later.
Outside, Dews fired "numerous shots" at Gearing, a father with two small children, and another unidentified man with two kids, according to an affidavit. One round struck Gearing in the abdomen, and he was taken to Erlanger hospital for emergency surgery, according to an affidavit.
Dews was arrested four days later on charges of attempted first-degree murder, aggravated assault, reckless endangerment, unlawful carrying or possession of a firearm, and possession of a firearm during a dangerous felony, according to his affidavit.
Bi-Lo security footage helped to identify him through an ATM receipt he had dropped.
On Monday, as part of the plea deal, Dews admitted only to the second count: aggravated assault. He stood before Smith and jerked his shoulders, occasionally glancing toward the holding room. At one point, he grinned at his family members, who declined comment.
Before finalizing the deal, Smith said he had to walk Dews through the constitutional rights he would forfeit: the option to call witnesses, a jury trial, the ability to appeal.
"Are you willing to give up these constitutional rights to enter into this plea, Mr. Dews?" the judge asked.
"Yes, sir," Dews replied.
Contact staff writer Zack Peterson at zpeter firstname.lastname@example.org or 423-757-6347. Follow @zackpeterson918.