Local News

Victim's family shocked slaying suspect accused of Perdue threats

Posted March 28, 2011 2:32 p.m. EDT
Updated March 28, 2011 7:00 p.m. EDT

— A Youngsville man was out on bond on a manslaughter charge when he was charged with threatening to kill Gov. Beverly Perdue.

Dennis Matthew McDermott, 30, of 1071 Holden Road, was charged Saturday with threatening a public official.

Workers at a state Division of Motor Vehicles license plate office in Wake Forest told Highway Patrol troopers that McDermott got angry during a visit to the office a week ago and said, "When you see Bev Perdue with a .38 slug in her head, I did it."

The license plate office workers told troopers that he then added, "Call the law, and I'll take care of them, too."

"It shocked me so bad to think that he was that foolish," Dixie Satterwhite said Monday as McDermott made his first court appearance.

McDermott was charged last year with involuntary manslaughter in the September 2009 death of Satterwhite's husband, John.

John Satterwhite, 85, a World War II veteran, was walking through the woods near his home in Henderson when he was shot and killed. Vance County authorities said McDermott and two other men were shooting at targets nearby, and a stray bullet hit Satterwhite.

McDermott asked District Judge Ned Mangum to reduce his $150,000 bond on the latest charge so he could go home to his wife and children. He expressed confusion at the charge.

"I just got picked up one day," he said. "I didn't say anything to the governor."

Prosecutors told Mangum that McDermott also has a pending assault case in Nash County and has been charged previously with failure to appear in court. The judge denied the request for a lower bond.

If McDermott posts bond, Mangum ordered that he get a mental health examination within five days of his release.

"I was just afraid for him to be out because I didn't know who else or what else (could be in danger)," said Donna Russell, the Satterwhites' daughter. "I think he said that he didn't know what had happened, and that's kind of dangerous."

McDermott has an April 15 court date on the manslaughter charge.