BEAUMONT, TX (News Release) - By Jena Johnson - email
NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - A Nacogdoches man has pleaded guilty to murdering a former SFA football player, accepting a 50-year prison sentence.
A grand jury had previously charged Nickevett Carey, 21, with capital murder in the death of Michael Motte. Carey pleaded guilty to the reduced charge of murder.
He will be eligible for parole in 25 years.
According to previous reports, Carey was accused of shooting Motte during a robbery in June of 2009.
Jury selection was scheduled to begin for Carey's capital murder trial Monday before Carey took the plea deal.
District Attorney Nicole LoStracco says Motte's family is relieved, but says they may never feel justice.
"I won't say that they were happy with the offer in that 50 years in prison doesn't bring their son back for them," LoStracco said.
According to police, Carey, with a handgun in one hand and money in the other, met four others and indicated to them he shot and robbed Motte. With no eyewitnesses, LoStracco says the state depended upon the testimony of those four people.
"Those people were our key witnesses and again it was their truthful testimony upon which our case hinged so there's always some concern that one or more of those people is going to take the stand and change their story to the extent that the jury may develop reasonable doubt and find the defendant not guilty," LoStracco said.
LoStracco says we may never know why Carey pulled the trigger, but she is certain about one thing.
"I absolutely believe he was the person that killed Michael Motte and I believe it because he just told us in court this morning," LoStracco said.
A devastating reality that looms over two families.
Carey's attorney, Stephanie Stephens, said her client made a tough, but smart decision to accept the plea offer.
"It's never a good day when you see a 21-year-old plead to 50 years in prison," she said. "I think he took responsibility."
LoStracco said Carey waived his right to an appeal as part of the plea bargain.