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Charges Against Carolane Drive Murder Suspects Dismissed

By news@wbbjtv.com
By 7 Eyewitness News Staff

JACKSON, Tenn. - The charges against the eight men charged in the beating death of Antwan Brooks were dismissed Tuesday morning.

According to a press release from the Jackson Police Department and Attorney General Jerry Woodall, a motion to dismiss the charges, without prejudice, was made after additional evidence in the case came to light.

Terrell Reid, 29, James Roberson, 27, Frank Massengill, 34, Demarcus Crawford, 24, and Sean Blackmon, 26, were all released from the Madison County Jail Tuesday. Byron Purdy, 33, was released from jail August 14 after his alibi was confirmed. Exavier Ingram, 23, and Michael Smith, 22, will remain jailed due to other outstanding charges against them.

Soon after the murder, two witnesses reportedly told police that Brooks was jumped from behind by three or four men within a crowd during the early morning hours of August 5. Eight to ten additional men allegedly joined in the fight. Brooks later died from injuries sustained in the beating.

Nine arrest warrants were returned by a special grand jury charging the men with first degree murder based upon the witness identifications of the suspects.

One of the nine men, Byron Purdy, told police he was at work at the time of the incident. That was confirmed by surveillance video and charges against him were dropped soon after his arrest in August.

Since then, three of the other defendants have had their alibis supported by evidence uncovered by the police department.

Because nearly half of the men originally charged have been found to have alibis, authorities determined the credibility of the witness statements had been destroyed. Additionally, police said the witnesses have become uncooperative and have asked for benefits.

That caused the District Attorney General's Office to file the motion to dismiss the charges.

Jackson police are continuing to investigate the murder.
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