MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – On Tuesday, a fourth man pleaded guilty to lesser charges in connection with a robbery and death of a Myrtle Beach man back in April 2009.
Christopher Lee McDonald pleaded guilty to robbery and was sentenced to eight years in prison, with time served. He had been charged with murder, robbery, burglary, and two counts of kidnapping.
On April 22, 2009, officers responded to a home along Cedar Street in reference to a shooting. Upon arrival, officers found Antonio Grate unresponsive and suffering from a gunshot wound.
Grate was transported to the hospital where he was pronounced dead.
Further investigation revealed several armed suspects forced their way into the home and held three victims at gunpoint as they demanded money and property. Grate was one of those victims. The other two remained at the scene after the incident and were interviewed by police.
According to an affidavit, officers interviewed a man in May of 2011 in relation to an unrelated incident. During that interview, the man admitted to being involved in the robbery and the subsequent murder of Grate.
Through other interviews with the man and further investigation, officers were able to identify three other suspects, included Alex Antwain Graham, of Conway.
Those suspects were identified as Lorenzo Juquel Herion, Christopher McDonald and Antoine Days.
Police then interviewed one of the suspects, who also admitted to being involved in the robbery, and identified Graham and the others as additional suspects, according to the affidavit.
Upon further investigation, officers determined Graham and another suspect named in the affidavit carried firearms and they both pointed and presented those firearms at the victims at a close range.
Statements from suspects indicated a gun went off during the home invasion, causing Grate to suffer a gunshot wound to his chest.
McDonald was the last of the four arrested suspects to plead guilty in this case.
Graham pleaded guilty to manslaughter on November 5, 2013, and received 17.5 years less time served. He was originally charged with murder, with two counts of Kidnapping, weapons possession during a violent crime, robbery and burglary.
Herion also pleaded guilty to manslaughter on November 13, 2013, and was sentenced to 21 years, given time served. He had also been charged with two counts of weapons Possession during a violent crime, two counts of criminal conspiracy, two counts of kidnapping, burglary and robbery.
Day pleaded guilty to robbery on January 8, 2014, and was sentenced to 10 years in prison, given time served. He had also originally been charged with burglary, weapons possession during a violent crime, two counts of kidnapping and murder.