Local News

Ninth-Grader Charged in Deacon's Shooting Death

Posted January 10, 2008

— A teenager faces a murder charge in the death of a church deacon who was shot outside his home while checking his mail.

Latrell Cyrell Latham, 16, of 4908 N. New Hope Road, was charged Thursday afternoon in the Oct. 23 death of Richard Gus Brown, 74.

Latham, a ninth-grader who attended Millbrook High School, was arrested Nov. 13 on an unrelated strong armed robbery charge and was already in jail when he was charged in Brown's death.

Police spokesman Jim Sughrue said information collected in the case evenutally led investigators to Latham, but he would not comment on what that information was or a motive, saying the investigation is ongoing.

"The detectives have just done a laborious and intensive job of compiling the bits and pieces of information that came together on the case," Sughrue said, "and eventually, those pieces fell into place to form a whole."

Brown had returned from a deacon's meeting at his church shortly before 8 p.m. on that night when someone shot him while he was outside his Wallingford Drive apartment, police said.

"I don't know how to feel," Brown's widow, Evelyn Brown, said Thursday upon hearing the news of an arrest. She said she intended to spend the evening quietly and in prayer.

Evelyn Brown said she was relieved and thankful to investigators for their work on the case.

"I've always had confidence in them," she said.

According to Wake County Public School System records, Latham left school on Nov. 7, a week before his arrest on the robbery charge.


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  • Dr. Dataclerk Jan 11, 2008

    When convicted, I hope the Judge gives this young man Life in Prison with no parole. Let him grow old in prison. The man he killed was like a grandfather to him. But he did not realize that because he was simply not taught morals and values of a human life. If he was taught evidently he paid it no mind and now will suffer the consequences for his doings. Meanwhile, just to inform some of you: Has people forgotten the birth control pill, condoms and any other birth control method. This is about taking responsibility. If that do not work, then tie your tubes. Other wise refrain from intercourse until you are married.

  • Nancy Jan 11, 2008

    dataclerk and theycallmecrac ker, you both have attributed another poster's comments to me.

    In case you are not aware, in order to respond to a poster, the only way to denote such is to add quotation marks to a posters comments and then reply underneath.

    I was replying to another, quoted their post and you assumed I stated those things. Please read more carefully, thanks.

  • Dark_Horse Jan 11, 2008

    We all grew up in generations that were perceived as being more violent than the previous generation. So you can't really say the world made him the way he is. We all are born with a basic idea of what's right and wrong. He knew what he did was wrong, and now he has to pay for it. And why was he 16 and still in the 9th grade???

  • Nancy Jan 11, 2008

    "about the whole upbringing and stuff if a child is upbrought in the right way but being at school he sees violence, profanity, fights, on the news he sees stuff, things he watches, so even if the parent is upbringing him in a right way he will STILL do what he wants to do in the end because of the world how it is today....so stop blaming the parents...blame society and him..it is societys falt that he learns this stuff but his fault for taking action on it!..."

    LOL, I hope you don't have any children, you obviously believe that society controls the child's mind totally and that parents can't raise their children morally or ethically at all.

    The gene pool is missing a lifeguard!

  • Nancy Jan 11, 2008

    "Nancy: (Your quote: People get pregnant that will not raise productive members of society.) Then you should know I was once a single parent and raised my daughter who is a NC State graduate and have her Masters. She was teacher but now she is on a higher level. Can you say the same? I didn't think so. Intelligent is something else. But being ignorant in this day and time does not cut it. :) I am glad I did not have an abortion. I am sorry you believe in taking a child's life. So you need to watch your choice of words."

    Excuse me? People obviously don't understand the "" marks when I quoted another poster and responded to it.

    Reading comprehension seems to be an issue around here.

  • Nancy Jan 11, 2008

    "Nancy- i dont think abortion is the right thing....you say if they do not have enough responsiblity to raise the child they should get an abortion but that is way there is a thing called adoption so a responsible adult who proabley cant have kids will be able to have one and there are TONS of programs where you can leave your child if you dont feel responsible enough...you are killing a human being..it is like murder"

    I was responding to a post by another who supports abortion, I do not.

  • TheGraduate Jan 11, 2008

    Teens need the opportunity to grow up, get an education, and become an adult before they have the responsibilities of parenthood thrust upon them. They haven't the knowledge or maturity to guide boys such as this one on the right path.

  • clover1019 Jan 11, 2008

    i agree with gandolf!

    how can someone have the audacity to go kill someone who is a complete stranger to them? that is just unbelieveable to me, not to mention scary

  • Phrostbite Jan 11, 2008

    It takes a village to raise a child, particularly in this day & age where so many parents have vacated their obligations to raise their children with a moral compass. Spend some time with a child & encourage them, if but only for a minute. It's not just an investment in their future, it's an investment in a nation.

  • Mo Jan 11, 2008

    Just goes to show all of our lost children do not live in Durham. The country and a large number of our youth are in a sad state and there appears to be no way to fit it. Very scary...