Murder trial day 4: Martin Reynolds sentenced to 16 years for 2nd degree murder
TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - The sentence for Martin Reynolds has been handed down.
Martin Reynolds was found guilty of murder on Wednesday night by a jury. He has now been sentenced by a jury to 16 years in prison for second degree felony murder, finding evidence of sudden passion.
Reynolds, 24, was charged with murder after he shot and killed Andrew Carpenter, 19, in November 2017. Opening statements indicated that the prosecution was seeking a 40-year prison sentence. The defense said it would ask for a 10-year sentence.
The prosecution called Carpenter’s parents, Julia Roberts and and Robert Carpenter, as witnesses. Roberts said Andrew Carpenter was her youngest son and that he planned to go to pharmaceutical school. Robert Carpenter described getting the phone call that his son had been shot and quickly traveling from Dallas to Tyler to try and be with his son. The prosecution then rested.
The defense then called on Reynolds to take the stand. In his testimony, he said he never intended to shoot and did not intend to get shot. Reynolds also apologized to Andrew Carpenter’s family.
As cross-examination began, Reynolds said he was scared for his life after Andrew Carpenter shot him, which is why he shot back. He also said that he does not remember the phone call that took place between him and Andrew Carpenter, though he regrets making them.
The prosecution questioned Reynolds regarding his motivation for going to Jarred Wells’ residence to confront Andrew Carpenter. Reynolds again said he did not go over there with the intention of starting a fight or killing anyone. He also maintained that he was not holding the gun when he approached the residence.
As questioning went back to the defense, Reynolds said his intention in going to where Andrew Carpenter was that night was to “talk and have some beers.” The state objected to this, angrily accusing defense attorney Thad Davidson of asking leading questions. Davidson responded by claiming that was all the state had asked in the last three days. The argument was shut down by Judge Austin Jackson before ordering a 15-minute break.
Following the break, Davidson resumed calling witnesses, including a friend of Reynolds’, Colton Owens who said Reynolds was not quick to anger and was often a de-escalator. Jason Hoffmeyer, Reynolds’ uncle, said his nephew was a peaceful person who always had a smile on his face and was ready to help. Jacqueline Nash, whose children are friends with Reynolds, described him as a sweet and good kid.
Both sides then rested. Following a lunch break, the jury will begin deliberating on a sentence.
Jury deliberations began at 1:52 p.m.
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