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Durham man rearrested in Raleigh cold case appears in court

Posted June 17, 2015

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— A suspect in a 2009 homicide whose trial ended in a hung jury made his first court appearance Wednesday after being rearrested for the same crime.

James Harold Courtney III, 49, of Bunch Drive in Durham, was recharged Tuesday with murder in the death of James Carol Deberry Jr.

Deberry, 32, was found shot inside his apartment on the 5900 block of Shadetree Lane on Oct. 31, 2009. He later died at WakeMed.

The charges against Courtney and co-defendant David Moses were dismissed in 2010 after a jury failed to reach an unanimous verdict.

“Investigative work has continued since the trial,” Raleigh police said in a statement on Tuesday.

Alicia Nance-Leigh, Deberry's cousin, said she is grateful police were able to make an arrest.

"It is such a blessing to know that someone is going to be accountable for taking him away from us," she said.

Investigators filed search warrants in April 2014 for the cell phones of Moses and Courtney, and a DNA swab from a man whose fingerprint was found on the victim’s vehicle. The man was interviewed previously and said he did not know the victim and was never in Raleigh, but later admitted to knowing Courtney, according to search warrants.

Deberry's mother, Joyce Deberry, said she was excited upon hearing about the arrest.

"I do not know why the Lord allowed it to go the way it did," she said. "I just believe this is the time. Now is the time for justice to be served."

Deberry's two children, a 14-year-old daughter and a 6-year-old son, were also happy to hear about the arrest.

"He affected a lot of people, and he was loved by a lot of people," Nance-Leigh said.

"I just want those who have done wrong to face up to what they have done wrong," said Harold Nance, Deberry's cousin.

Courtney remained in the Wake County jail Wednesday under no bond.


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