PHOENIX, AZ (March 8, 2013) – After deliberating for less than two hours, a Maricopa County jury has found Brandon Martin Roberts (D.O.B. 8/7/1993) guilty of First Degree Murder for fatally shooting an elderly man who was taking an evening walk through a park. Roberts was also convicted of Attempted Armed Robbery and possessing a firearm as a minor. He is scheduled to be sentenced by the Honorable Cynthia Bailey on May 3, 2013 and faces a possible term of life in prison.
“With this verdict, the citizens of Maricopa County have appropriately held a criminal accountable for taking an innocent life and causing untold grief to a family in our community,” said Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery. “We will not tolerate this type of senseless violence and baseless claims of self-defense will not shield the guilty,” he added.
On July 19, 2011, 78 year-old Milton Raffle went on his regular walk through a park in the area of 2400 West Cactus Road. He did not return. Raffle, a Korean War Veteran, was found unconscious and unresponsive with a single gunshot wound to the head shortly after midnight. He later died at a hospital, surrounded by his wife, four sons and one of his grandchildren.
Police investigators quickly linked Roberts and Nadeem Alferikh to the shooting. When interviewed, both claimed that Milton Raffle was the aggressor and that Roberts shot him in self-defense. Roberts and Alferikh also admitted to patting down the victim’s pockets after the shooting to find anything of value. Police learned the gun had been stolen from a nearby home several days earlier. The weapon was subsequently discovered dismantled in the attic of Roberts’ house during the execution of a search warrant.
On July 28, 2011, a Grand Jury indicted Roberts and Alferikh alleging murder, attempted robbery, illegal firearms possession and burglary. On January 29, 2013, Alferikh agreed to plead guilty to Manslaughter and serve 14 years in the Arizona Department of Corrections.