Local News

Death penalty trial begins for Raleigh double murder suspect

Posted February 24

— Jury selection began Monday in the murder trial of a Raleigh man who could potentially face the death penalty if he's found guilty of killing two people during a string of robberies in 2008.

Armond Devega, 32, is charge with two counts of first-degree murder in connection with the deaths of Anthony Dwayne Scarborough and Stephanie Powell Anderson.

Police say Devega and Scarborough – who was killed during a Feb. 13, 2008, home invasion on Tartan Circle in Raleigh – knew one another while imprisoned at the Johnston Correctional Center and that Devega might have held a grudge against Scarborough.

Powell, 39, a gas station clerk at a Wilco-Hess gas station in north Raleigh, was shot to death after she arrived to open the store early on April 10, 2008. Investigators say Devega had been waiting for her and shot her when she was unable to open the store's safe.

Because it is a capital murder case, prosecutors and defense attorneys estimate that the process of selecting a jury could take up to three weeks.

Opening statements are scheduled for March 17. Testimony could last up to eight weeks.

Devega also faces several other charges, including one count of attempted murder and nine counts of robbery, in connection with robberies at several other restaurants and convenience stores in Raleigh.

The attempted murder charge stems from the Sept. 10, 2008, shooting of a clerk at a check-cashing business on Wake Forest Road.

Devega's case is the oldest pending in Wake County.

He was arrested in October 2008, and last year, he refused a plea deal.

His trial was also delayed once after an attorney representing him had to be removed because of an illness.

Devega is the first person in Wake County to potentially face the death penalty since Jason Williford went to trial in 2012 for the first-degree murder of Kathy Taft, a state school board member who was beaten to death and brutally raped while recovering from surgery at the Raleigh home of a friend.

Jurors found Williford guilty of first-degree murder but recommended he be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

6 Comments

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  • david46 Feb 24, 6:43 p.m.

    I guess we will end up keeping this piece of human debris alive until he dies of natural causes for the next 30 to 40 yrs, costing the taxpayer 1.2- 2 million not to mention healthcare as he gets older. We will cut grandma off at 82 from getting a heart by-pass but we will keep on feeding this cretin.

  • 678devilish Feb 24, 2:48 p.m.

    If given the death penalty, it may never happen. Remember Blanche Taylor Moore is sitting on death row; and looking good as ever. She will most likely die of natural causes.

  • Deb1003 Feb 24, 11:59 a.m.

    Just because it's a "death penalty" trial doesn't mean it will ever happen! Until NC reinstates the death penalty, anyone convicted will sit on death row forever. That's life in prison, not death row.

  • bunnie Feb 24, 11:34 a.m.

    I'm hoping it's a quick one. He doesn't deserve to see the light of day again.

  • cocker_mom Feb 24, 9:30 a.m.

    Sounds like this one should also be quick. Again - what's the defense here? other than a technicality?

  • rickandlinda88 Feb 24, 8:05 a.m.

    whew!!sounds like this guy is a real upstanding citizen..(NOT!!)..hey jury;show some backbone..dust off ole sparky!!!