Local News

Half-brother of Demario Atwater killed in Durham shooting

Posted November 9, 2008
Updated November 10, 2008

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— The younger half-brother of a murder suspect in the slaying of a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill senior was shot to death while leaving a weekend party.

Shelton Henderson Jr., 19, the half-brother of Demario James Atwater, was one of two men killed around 11:30 p.m. Saturday outside a Durham apartment at 906 Glendale Ave.

Authorities said Henderson had recently testified before a federal grand jury, which indicted Atwater on fatal carjacking and other charges.

Atwater, 22, is among two suspects charged in Orange County with first-degree murder in Eve Carson's death.

Nathan Elmoore, 17, was also killed late Saturday, and two other people – Christopher Hunter, 16, and James Downey, 21 – suffered gunshot wounds that were not considered life-threatening.

Ronnet Black, a neighbor and friend of Henderson, said Sunday that Atwater was the victim's half-brother and that their mother is devastated by the shootings.

"She's been going through so much, and she is a wonderful woman," Black said. "She is so sweet. For all of this to be happening to her, she is the most wonderful woman I've ever known."

Deamonte Tavaris Brooks, 19, and Dylan Shaquan Turner, 17, were charged in connection with the shootings.

Brooks faces two counts of assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury and Turner faces a charge of possession of a firearm by a minor, police said.

Officers said the shootings resulted from a fight at a party. Witnesses said the argument was over alcohol.

"It's upsetting to me because these are babies out here and they are killing each other," Durham police Lt. R. McLaughlin said.

Black said Henderson – better known as J.J. – had a big heart.

"I think that is messed up because J.J. was a good boy. He was a good person. He was just at the wrong place at the wrong time,” Black said.

Henderson had an outstanding warrant for his arrest for failing to appear in court last month to face a marijuana charge.

Brooks was being held Sunday evening in the Durham County Jail on a $1 million bond. Turner was released into his parents' custody.

Anyone with information about the shooting was asked to call Durham police at 919-560-4440 or Crime Stoppers at 919-683-1200.

Crime Stoppers pays cash rewards for information leading to arrests in felony cases, and callers never have to identify themselves.


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  • lillyss0017 Nov 12, 2008

    Thank you, msbroberts! To the people who said it was karma and that this is the case of a mother faililng her sons.. Put yourself in their mother's shoes! She is losing two of her sons. Do you think she wanted this to happen to them? No and what mother would? Secondly, you do not know this family and you have no idea what is going through their heads. Think of this as your own family and when you read through these comments, how they would make you and your family feel! God be with these families and let their souls rest in peace.

  • Grad2011 Nov 12, 2008

    The truth is Demario Atwater’s name has no place here, nor does Eve Carson’s. When she was killed I prayed for her family. I’m praying for the families of the two youth killed more, because know one is focusing on their pain. I am a mother, my sons do go to parties, they both have 3.5 GPA, between them both I have members of the FBLA, National Honor Society, National Society of High School Scholars, class president, and they both are involved in extra curricular school activities. This could have just as easily been one of my sons. Does that mean I am doing a poor job as a parent as well? For those of you have done everything your parents asked of you, I am pleased to meet you; but if you didn’t stop judging and let these families mourn in peace. Two high schools in Durham are suffering because they lost a good friend, student, and team mate in Nathan Elmoore. A stray bullet has now names on it. Let these two young men rest in peace, my prayers are with the families.

  • familyfour Nov 10, 2008

    can you say "karma"?

    .....karma.... (and, I agree.)

  • dogeatdog Nov 10, 2008

    can you say "karma"?

  • teacher-mom Nov 10, 2008

    I had a friend who called her son at 10 every night. Guess what! most parties don't start until about 11. You do not know everything your children do unless you are sitting right next to them. Please do not fool yourselves.

  • teacher-mom Nov 10, 2008

    No one is totally safe. I do not know if those young men were low lifes or not. That is beside the point. They were murdered by an idiot with a gun. It could have been any one of us. Bullets go through windows and doors everyday. Drunk drivers are everywhere. Trees fall on people all the time. No one is safe.

  • mproctor2 Nov 10, 2008

    where is the outrage from the civil rights leaders?this kind of violence has to stop.

  • familyfour Nov 10, 2008

    Truth be told she failed these boys as a mother. Maybe it wasn't intentionally or maybe it was but she failed them miserably!

    Your entire comment was well said.

  • Silver loves Rebel Red puppies Nov 10, 2008

    This is not really news or a suprize, it was something that was bound to happen.

  • Common Sense Man Nov 10, 2008

    Anyone read the article? He's 19, not 16.