Willie Hervey Junior took the stand in court today to testify about how and why he shot 20-year-old Mark Austin Hawkins on Easter Sunday 2014.
Hervey said he was trying to purchase marijuana from Hawkins while sitting in Hervey’s SUV in the driveway of Hawkins’ home on River Road. He said he got angry because Hawkins tried to short him so he pulled out his gun and put it to Hawkins’ neck.
He said it never occurred to him Hawkins would resist, and the gun accidentally went off in a struggle. When prosecutor Starla Jones pointed out numerous inconsistencies from his previous statements, Hervey said his memory is better now.
Jones said Hervey has lied about never seeing Hawkins that day, where he had been that day, and that he wasn’t driving the SUV that day, which he now admits he was. Hervey maintained the shooting was accidental, and not a robbery.
In a strange sidebar to this trial, Hervey’s father, also named Willie Maurice Hervey, is serving a 30-year prison sentence for murder. Yesterday was actually the 17-year anniversary of that fatal shooting near Lynwood Park in 2000.
Police say the senior Hervey shot a friend, 23-year-old Quincy Harper, after the two had quarreled.