NC death row inmate resentenced to life in prison
Posted December 4, 2014
Williamston, N.C. — A judge in Martin County on Thursday resentenced a North Carolina death row inmate to life in prison without the possibility of parole for his role in an 18-year-old murder case.
Shawn Derick Bonnett, 43, was convicted in 1996 of first-degree murder for the shooting death of Robert Stancil Hardison during a store robbery just outside the town of Williamston.
In 1998, the North Carolina Supreme Court upheld his conviction, but the local district attorney recently agreed to take Bonnett off death row because of sentencing inequities in the case.
According to The Center for Death Penalty Litigation in Durham, Bonnett was one of four people tried for the crime. But he was not the shooter, and some of his co-defendants who had greater culpability received lesser sentences for their roles.
Calls to Bonnett's attorneys were not immediately returned Thursday evening.
He was still listed Thursday afternoon as being among the 151 inmates on death row at Central Prison in Raleigh as of Thursday afternoon.
A spokesman for the North Carolina Department of Public Safety, however, said once the prison receives official notice, Bonnett's status will be changed and that he will be moved to another unit and eventually reassigned to another prison.