Second trial starts for man accused of shooting over parking space

Stanton being arrested shortly after the shooting
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Jury selection is scheduled for Monday morning at the Miller County courthouse in Texarkana, Ark., for a man whose murder conviction and life sentence were overturned by a higher court.

Marvin Stanton, 52, was sentenced in May 2016 to life plus 15 years in the Sept. 25, 2015, shooting death of Jesse James Hamilton in the parking lot of the Raceway convenience store and gas station on State Line Avenue in Texarkana, Ark. In 2017, the Arkansas Supreme Court threw out the conviction in an opinion that ruled the jury heard testimony about prior aggressive, violent and intimidating conduct by Stanton that shouldn’t have been admitted.

Stanton and several other members of the Juggernauts Motorcycle Club had been out riding together when the group stopped at the Raceway. Stanton is accused of picking a fight with Hamilton, who was parked in a spot Stanton regularly preferred to use. Stanton, a much larger man than Hamilton, was allegedly angered when Hamilton was able to dominate in a brief physical scuffle. Someone had allegedly pulled Hamilton away from Stanton when Stanton pulled out a pistol and fired a single shot into Hamilton’s gut.

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Stanton and others immediately rendered aid to Hamilton but he died later that night in a local hospital. Stanton was charged with murder in the death.

At the end of Stanton’s first trial, during which he testified, the jury sentenced Stanton to life in prison with an additional 15-year term for using a firearm in commission of a felony. Stanton faces 10 to 40 years or life if convicted of murder a second time. Stanton could receive up to 15 additional years for the use of a firearm.

Prosecuting Attorney Stephanie Black and Deputy Prosecuting Attorney David Cotten are prosecuting. Stanton is represented by Patrick Benca of Little Rock. Circuit Judge Kirk Johnson is presiding over the case.

Testimony is expected to begin Monday following jury selection.

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