DeVonte Molley spent the last weekend of his life with a man he thought was his friend.
But instead, the state alleges, Maurice Burgess was setting Molley up to be robbed at gunpoint inside a room at the Madison Hotel, also known as the Baymont Inn & Suites.
Molley, 23, was shot inside Room 859 on Dec. 21, 2015, then crawled to the elevator, pushed the button for the lobby and collapsed, Assistant Prosecutor Rick McKelvey told jurors. He died later that night.
Burgess, Sterling Spence and Charles Dupree Wynn went on trial Monday on charges that include felony murder, which is a crime that results in the death of someone.
According to the charge, which of the men shot Molley doesn’t matter, McKelvey told the jurors. Whether or not they wanted him dead is irrelevant as well. Just that all three were involved in the original crime.
Text messages and calls setting that up will prove that, McKelvey told jurors during his opening statement .
But the three defense attorneys for the men cautioned jurors to listen to all the evidence and keep an open mind about their clients.
Molley was a drug dealer, targeted because of the money Burgess watched him taking in during the weekend he was a guest in Molley’s room, McKelvey said.
“Mo” — as Burgess is known — even took video on his phone of Molley rapping. That same phone was used to text Wynn and then Spence to set up the robbery, the state alleges.
Surveillance video from the hotel, also known as the Madison, is expected to be played showing Burgess holding open the door for the other two after he allegedly texted to say that Molley was asleep.
“That’s when this whole plan went bad,” McKelvey said.
Molley woke up and pulled a gun, according to a letter penned by Spence that was discussed at an earlier hearing in the case.
Molley was shot, and the two men ran.
That’s when he left the room on hands and knees and got into the elevator.
Body camera footage from Officer Matt Rogers showed Molley on the ground in front of the elevator as police tended to him waiting for medics.
Family members in the courtroom cried with some walking out when they saw Molley.
On the screen, officers peppered him with questions.
Rogers radios in to say the man is conscious but fading.
“Please help me out,” Molley says looking at Rogers. “Please.”
The officer assures him medics are on the way.