Trial begins for William & Mary football player's alleged killer (2024)

Keith Bryant is accused of killing 19-year-old Nate Evans. Bryant's attorneys say they have the wrong man, and the one who did it is testifying in Bryant's trial.

NORFOLK, Va. — A murder trial in Norfolk is underway for the man facing charges in the killing of a William & Mary football player in 2019.

Nate Evans was 19 when someone shot and killed him outside of an off-campus Old Dominion University house party. Evans was a running back on the team and investigators say he was shot four times and hit twice, once in the back.


Five years later, Keith Bryant faces a jury while charged with first-degree murder and gun charges. He pleaded not guilty.

But the prosecutors and defense have two very different stories of what happened that night.

Norfolk police arrested Kri'Shawn Beamon shortly after the shooting and charged him with second-degree murder.

The Commonwealth argues it was actually Beamon's friend, Keith Bryant, who pulled the trigger. Bryant's attorneys say it was Beamon himself.

The jury heard emotional testimony from Evans' childhood friend who was with him the night he died.

He said he and Evans drove to meet Beamon, also known as ‘Pocket,’ at the house party on 43rd St in Norfolk to sell 1 pound of marijuana. The witness said neither of them were armed.

Evans' friend said once 'Pocket' got in the car, he felt something was off.

The friend said Beamon ran from the car with the weed before paying, and Evans chased after him. Multiple neighbors report hearing three to four gunshots. Evans' friend recalls hearing someone yell "nobody f**** with Pocket, b****" when the shots rang out. The friend recalls seeing a "tall African American man" watching over the transaction.

He said he ran and hid before eventually finding Evans' body lying on the sidewalk.

Beamon testified against his childhood friend Tuesday. He said he and Bryant arrived at the party together from a different party in Portsmouth. Beamon said he asked Bryant, who he claims was armed, to watch over the transaction. Beamon also said the interaction felt "off" from his perspective.

Beamon said he was only looking to spend $500 to $800. Evans' friend said the asking price was over $1,000, however.

Beamon claims he ran from the car, leaving the weed behind. After the gunshots rang out, Beamon claims he saw Bryant jump in Beamon's Ford Fusion and drive away.

Another witness said they saw someone "with dreads" jump in the car, back into another car, and drive away with the headlights off.

Bryant's attorneys James Broccoletti and Mario Lorello said Beamon has been in custody since 2019 but never mentioned Bryant's name until 2022.

They said Beamon was denied bond multiple times, but it was finally granted after pointing the finger at Bryant. They argue Beamon didn't suddenly have an "epiphany" but that he instead wants to cut down his possible life sentence.

Bryant's attorneys also call the police work after the shooting "troubling."

They allege Beamon's initial interview with police in 2019 was "lost" and the lead detective didn't write notes on the interview until this year. They also allege the lead detective on the case is the aunt of the former student who threw the house party. They say no one has seen the original statement made by Beamon.

The attorneys also say the gun used that night was found in a car in Suffolk with eight people seemingly unrelated to the shooting. They claim police never interviewed the individuals inside the car. Broccoletti also alleges police never interviewed the man they caught driving Beamon's car days later.

The Commonwealth said there is no DNA evidence in this case, but they say they have multiple cell phone records that place Bryant at the party that night.

According to attorney Gordon Ufkes, Bryant told investigators he wasn't there because he was at his mother's house. The Commonwealth said there were a lot of people who "heard stuff but didn't see stuff" that night.

Wednesday will begin with the defense's cross-examination of Beamon. The jury will also hear from the detective on the case, as well as an FBI Cellular Analysis Survey Team agent.

Beamon still awaits his own trial on the case. If convicted of second-degree murder and robbery, he could face a life sentence plus 48 years.

Trial begins for William & Mary football player's alleged killer (2024)
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