Trial dates set for Marksville police officers accused of killing 6-year-old

Trial dates set for Marksville police officers accused of killing 6-year-old
Jeremy Mardis (Source: Family member)
Jeremy Mardis (Source: Family member)

MARKSVILLE, LA (WAFB) - Two Marksville Police Officers accused of killing a 6-year-old boy during a police pursuit entered not guilty pleas at an arraignment hearing on Tuesday in Avoyelles Parish. The trial for Derrick Stafford is scheduled for Sept. 26, 2016. The trial for Norris Greenhouse Jr. is set for Nov. 28, 2016.

Arrest reports for the two officers, Norris Greenhouse Jr. and Derrick Stafford, detail the timeline of events on Nov. 3, 2015 around 9:15 p.m. in Marksville, LA. It states Greenhouse started pursuing Christopher Few's 2000 Kia Sport. From there, two more Ward 2 city marshals joined in the pursuit. They were identified as Lt. Jason Brouillette and Stafford. Sgt. Kenneth Parnell, who was working for the Marksville Police Department at the time, heard the call over the radio and responded. It is also when he turned on his body camera that recorded the entire scene.

Their affidavits state when everyone reached the dead end of Martin Luther King Drive, Greenhouse and Stafford got out of their cars and "...discharged their duty weapons towards the 2000 Kia Sport vehicle. The vehicle, Mr. Few and his son were struck by multiple gunshots fired by the deputy city marshals."

"Mr. Few was critically wounded by two gunshot wounds. Mr. Few's six-year-old son received five gunshot wounds and was pronounced dead at the scene," it also stated.

The body camera captured 13 minutes from that night...just 26 seconds in, it shows "...Christopher Few's empty hands are raised and visible when gunfire becomes audible."

When Louisiana State Police started its investigation into the guns used, troopers found "...all spent casings recovered at the scene were fired from the duty weapons of deputy city marshals Norris Greenhouse and Derrick Stafford." Also, when Parnell was interviewed by investigators, "...he stated he didn't fire his weapon because he didn't fear for his life."

As for the other two officers that night, Brouillette and Parnell, both are back working for the Marksville Police Department. The attorney general's office said it does not anticipate any criminal charges against them and does not expect to file any more indictments in this case.

In December, a judge denied motions to reduce the bonds for the officers. Bonds for both officers were set at $1 million

Derrick Stafford and eight others including his wife, mother, friends and even pastor testified on why they could not make the $1 million bond. But in the end, Judge William Bennett denied the motion to reduce Stafford's bail.

Greenhouse Jr. is already out on a $1 million bond after his father, Norris Greenhouse Sr., posted a property bond. If Greenhouse Jr.'s bond had been reduced, the family would have received some of the property back.

Stafford will remain in Rapides Parish Prison on a $1 million bond.

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