Crime

Rock Hill man ‘playing with gun’ killed his longtime friend. He shot him 6 times

Rock Hill man ‘playing with gun’ who shot longtime friend 6 times sentenced to 17 years in prison

Brandon McMoore, 27, pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter in the 2017 shooting death of longtime friend Darryl Stewart. McMoore had been playing with a gun at Stewart's house, and when the two had an altercation, McMoore shot Stewart six times.
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Brandon McMoore, 27, pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter in the 2017 shooting death of longtime friend Darryl Stewart. McMoore had been playing with a gun at Stewart's house, and when the two had an altercation, McMoore shot Stewart six times.

A Rock Hill man who killed his longtime friend after playing with a gun during a gathering was sentenced to 17 years in a South Carolina prison.

Brandon Marquis McMoore, 27, pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter Thursday in York County court for the April 2017 shooting of Darryl Stewart. The 17-year sentence was a negotiated agreement between prosecutors and McMoore in a case where prosecutors confirmed there was an argument and threats before the fatal shots.

McMoore was hanging out with others at Stewart’s Carolina Avenue home when McMoore pulled out a gun and started playing with it, said 16th Circuit Assistant Solicitor Aaron Hayes.

“Stewart was mad that Mr. McMoore was playing with a gun in his house,” Hayes said.

The two men argued and had an altercation, Hayes said. Stewart went into a bedroom after saying he was going to get a gun, Hayes said.

Stewart did not get a gun, but McMoore then shot Stewart six times, including twice in the back, Hayes said.

McMoore had been charged with murder days after the killing but agreed to plead guilty to manslaughter under an Alford plea. In an Alford plea in South Carolina, a defendant accepts the punishment of a guilty plea without admitting guilt by accepting that if the case went to trial, he would likely be found guilty, officials said in court.

McMoore said in court he wished he could change what he did .

“To the family of my friend Darryl Stewart, you have my utmost condolences,” McMoore said in court. “Darryl is in heaven now, but I have to live in hell for the rest of my life.”

McMoore’s mother, Tammy Gordon, spoke to her son in court about a sentence that means he will not face the possibility of life in prison.

“Son, you have been given another chance,” Gordon said. “Do what’s right.”

McMoore then said, “I will, momma.”

Stewart’s aunt, Esther Burns, said in court the family did not want vengeance and the shooting harmed both families.

“We are not out for blood,” Burns said.

Stewart’s uncle, Steven Burns, said gun violence must stop.

“”I wish all this would stop, and it will,” he said.

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Andrew Dys covers breaking news and public safety for The Herald, where he has been a reporter and columnist since 2000. He has won 51 South Carolina Press Association awards for his coverage of crime, race, justice, and people. He is author of the book “Slice of Dys” and his work is in the U.S. Library of Congress.

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