West Rehoboth shooting case goes to jury

Victim shot in leg following 2013 birthday brawl
April 10, 2014

Closing arguments concluded April 10 in the Superior Court trial of Derrick Sewell, a Millsboro man charged with first-degree assault in the shooting of a man in West Rehoboth.

Three people directly involved in the fight were arrested following a birthday celebration in 2013 in the 19000 block of Duffy Street. Sewell was the only one who pleaded not guilty, said his attorney John Brady.

“The issue is to reconcile what happened on Duffie Street that day,” Brady said.

According to police reports, Sewell, Rakeem Conquest, then 18, and Precious Tiggs, then 22, went to the West Rehoboth party to confront a party-goer. Police said Conquest pulled out a gun first but the victim knocked it out of Conquest's hand. Tiggs then gave Sewell a second gun, which Sewell fired at the victim's leg, police said.

Conquest pleaded guilty to first-degree assault, conspiracy, possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony and possession of a firearm by a person prohibited; Tiggs is serving a year in prison for possession of ammunition by a person prohibited, Brady said.

Deputy Attorney General Adam Gelof said all but a few people at the fight saw Sewell shoot the victim.

“To the fundamental story, the core of the case … he pulled it out and shot him,” Gelof said.

Superior Court Judge E. Scott Bradley instructed the 12-member jury to consider both first-degree assault and second-degree assault and whether Sewell was the principal actor or an accomplice. Sewell faces seven other charges including aggravated menacing, second-degree conspiracy, offensive touching and weapons charges.

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