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Jury deliberations continue in murder trial

LAWRENCEVILLE - A jury will continue deliberations today in a murder trial in which a man is accused of fatally shooting a bystander during a gunbattle nearly two years ago in a crowded gas station parking lot.

Jeremy Dockery, 25, faces charges of murder, felony murder, aggravated assault and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, said Assistant District Attorney Jenny Shaw, who is prosecuting the case with Assistant District Attorney Maya Whitmore.

The charges stem from a June 2005 incident in which 19-year-old Kareem Nicholson was shot, Shaw said. Nicholson was standing by a car when he was shot in the neck and chest. A bullet pierced his heart, and he bled to death.

The shooting happened after a confrontation at Barnacles, a night club in Duluth, Shaw said. Prosecutors contend Dockery returned to his apartment to get a gun before going to the gas station, where more than 100 people had gathered after nearby bars and clubs had closed.

Dockery allegedly returned to the gas station to shoot his "intended targets," which caused a gunbattle to break out, Shaw said. Nicholson "got caught up in the middle of the dispute," she said.

The trial began April 16, and closing arguments began Monday, Shaw said. Prosecutors brought forth 20 witnesses during nearly three days of testimony, including Dockery's codefendant, 30-year-old Lamont Edward Seals, and Selena Golden, who was grazed by a bullet during the gunbattle.

Seals is not on trial because he chose to testify, Shaw said. The outcome of Dockery's trial will determine if Seals is prosecuted, she said.

Dockery and Seals are being housed in the Gwinnett County Detention Center.