Suspects in Fat Trees murder take plea deals

Samuel Donaldson, Source: Columbus Police Department
Samuel Donaldson, Source: Columbus Police Department
Antoine Myricks, Source: Columbus Police Department
Antoine Myricks, Source: Columbus Police Department

By Lindsey Connell - bio | email | Twitter

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) -  Family and friends of Eric Mays say justice has not been served for their loved one.

The 34-year-old was shot and killed back in 2008 after a fight broke out at the Fat Trees Club on Schatulga Road.

Samuel Donaldson, the man charged with firing those fatal shots, pled guilty to one count of manslaughter instead of going to trial for murder.

He Was sentenced to 20 years- 12 of which he will serve in a state prison.

"Me and my mother have to suffer for the rest of our lives because my brother's gone. He was all we had and now he's gone and the guy just got 12 years in prison. It's not fair," said Crystal Mays, his sister.

In a statement after the court proceedings, Samuel Donaldson's attorney, Steve Craft, gave this statement to News Leader 9:

"This is an appropriate resolve to a bad situation. It's not unusual with alcohol, guns, and attitudes that someone gets killed. Mister Donaldson accepts responsibility."

Also in court, Antoine Myricks. He too was charged with Mays' murder but instead, pled guilty to the charge of hindering the apprehension of a criminal.

Myricks was sentenced to 10 years- two of which he will serve in the Muscogee County Prison.

"The only evidence against my client was that he had driven Mister Donaldson away after the shooting occurred but there was no proof that Mister Myricks knew that a shooting was going to take place before those shots were fired. It's an unfortunate incident for all parties involved," said his attorney, Stacy Jackson.

"I just really don't feel like everything was handled the way it should've been. I have to wake up in the morning and tell my son his father's gone. When he asks about his father, I have to tell him that he's gone to another place. That's a hurtful feeling for you to take a life of someone like that. Eric was a good person and on top of that, he was the best father," said Kelli Currington, Mays' former girlfriend.

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