Tucker man pleads guilty in brother’s death, is sentenced to 20 years


A Tucker man accused in the shooting death of his brother last year pleaded guilty to the charge Friday morning.

During a hearing before Circuit Court Judge Jodi Raines Dennis, Ryan Lavell Reed, 22, said “yes” when asked by the judge if he “caused the death” of his brother.

The brother, Nicholas Dejuan Reed, 22, was shot after an altercation between the two at their parent’s house in Tucker on April 21, 2012.

Chief Deputy Coroner David Westbrook pronounced Nicholas Reed dead at the scene of an apparent gunshot wound to the upper body.

Dennis sentenced Reed to 20 years in prison on one count of first-degree murder, followed by an additional five year sentence, which was suspended on condition of good behavior. He will be required to serve 14 years of his sentence before being eligible to apply for parole.

Reed also was charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm because of a 2010 conviction for robbery, as well as one count of Class C Criminal Mischief, nine counts of Class D Criminal Mischief, and one misdemeanor count of Criminal Mischief, all stemming from his actions after his brother’s death.

According to a probable cause affidavit from Sheriff’s Investigator Mickey Buffkin, after the shooting, Reed took the shotgun he used in the shooting and began walking through the neighborhood in Tucker, breaking windows in a number of vehicles before he was arrested.

Reed was sentenced to 20 years for being a felon in possession of a firearm, 10 years on the one Class B felony, six years on each of the Class D felonies, and a year in the county jail on the one misdemeanor count of criminal mischief, with all those sentences to run at the same time as the sentence for murder.

In a non-related case, Reed also pleaded guilty to one count of commercial burglary and one count of theft of property stemming from an incident just over two months before his brother’s death. He was sentenced to 20 years in prison on each of those two charges, with the sentences to also run at the same time as the sentence in the murder case.

Reed had been scheduled for trial early in March. If he had been found guilty of first-degree murder, he could have been sentenced to between 10 and 40 years or life in prison.