Charge: Illegal Alien Intentionally Killed Motorcyclist In North Carolina

Charge: Illegal Alien Intentionally Killed Motorcyclist In North Carolina

GRAHAM, NC (The Times-News) – A Burlington man charged with using an SUV to kill another man in November now faces a first-degree murder charge after a grand jury indictment — but not capital punishment.

Eric Sonny Nuñez, 39, of 715 S. Beaumont Ave., according to Burlington police, intentionally killed Darwin Deon Graves, 41, of Burlington by rear-ending with a black SUV the motorcycle Graves was riding east on Piedmont Way on Nov. 29. Graves and the motorcycle were thrown into a nearby van, fatally wounding Graves.

Investigators believe that Nuñez and Graves were arguing over a debt shortly before Graves left on his motorcycle.

Witnesses told the Times-News they saw a black SUV turn around in the road and flee the crash site before swerving into a yard and crashing into a parked red Dodge SUV at Piedmont Way and Brookline Drive. Donald Loyd, owner of the red SUV, said he saw the black SUV pull away from his yard and continue onto Piedmont Way before turning right onto South Beaumont Avenue. Loyd called 911 and followed the SUV to 715 S. Beaumont Ave.

Police later surrounded that vehicle while medics and investigators tended to Graves and the initial crash site.

During a so-called “rule 24” hearing Wednesday, Feb. 27 — announcing whether prosecutors intend to pursue capital punishment — Assistant District Attorney William Harrison told the court the grand jury upgraded the primary charge against Nuñez from second- to first-degree murder and that the District Attorney’s Office wouldn’t proceed with a capital case.

Nuñez also faces other charges, including felony hit-and-run causing serious injury or death, and hit-and-run causing property damage.

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