Dismissed Alabama basketball player Darius Miles provided the gun but did not pull the trigger in the fatal shooting of 23-year-old Jamea Harris, court documents state.
In an affidavit provided by Branden Culpepper of the Tuscaloosa Violent Crimes Unit, Culpepper told the Tuscaloosa County District Court that Miles admitted to providing the gun to alleged shooter Michael Lynne Davis and that Michael Davis struck Harris with a single fatal gunshot as she sat in the passenger seat of a car.
"Darius Miles admitted to providing Michael Davis with the handgun immediately prior to the shooting," a court document states.
Miles, 21, was arrested and charged with capital murder after the Sunday shooting in a Tuscaloosa nightlife district called The Strip near the University of Alabama campus. The shooting took place around 1:45 a.m. Davis, 20, was also charged with capital murder. Both are being held without bond.
The "capital" designation is related to the victim being killed while in a vehicle, according to documents. A capital murder charge carries the possibility of the death sentence in Alabama.
Per the court documents, witnesses identified Davis as the shooter, and there's surveillance footage of the shooting. A preliminary hearing had yet to be scheduled, according to the court documents.
Video footage provided by AL.com shows Miles at the Tuscaloosa County Jail after being detained on Sunday.
Miles maintained his innocence in a statement provided by his attorneys on Monday.
“While Darius has been accused of being involved with this tragedy, he maintains his innocence and looks forward to his day in court,” a statement from attorneys William White, Clayton Tartt and Suzanne Norman read, per the Associated Press. “Our firm’s own investigation is ongoing, and no further statement will be made at this time.”
Davis has not released a public statement. He is not associated with Alabama basketball.
Who is Darius Miles?
Miles was a junior reserve forward at Alabama. He arrived in Tuscaloosa as a 3-star prospect in 2020. He made six appearances for the fourth-ranked Crimson Tide this season while averaging 1.5 points and 1.5 rebounds. He averaged 5.8 points per game as a sophomore in 30 appearances that included three starts. He's not known to be related to former NBA player Darius Miles.
Alabama scrubbed Miles' bio from the team's home page after his arrest. It released a statement on Sunday that he had been dismissed from the program.
“We were made aware of the recent charge against student-athlete Darius Miles: he has been removed from campus and is no longer a member of the Alabama men’s basketball team,” the statement reads.
Alabama coach, victim's family speak
Head coach Nate Oats told reporters on Monday that the team is going through a grieving process.
“They didn’t have too many questions,” Oats said, per the Associated Press. “It’s really just more of kind of a grieving process. I mean, they understand the severity of the situation with Jamea. They also understand the severity of the situation with Darius. There’s both sides of it, dealing with it.”
Harris leaves behind a 5-year-old son. Her mother DeCarla Cotton told AL.com that she was visiting her cousin on campus before she was fatally shot.
“She was a beautiful young woman who loved her family and most of all her 5-year-old son Kaine,’’ Cotton said. “She was just trying to enjoy her weekend with her cousin that attends the University of Alabama and her boyfriend.”
Harris' cousin Kennedi Henderson also spoke with AL.com.
“She kept the cousins together and pushed us to be the best us,’’ Henderson said. “She was the best little cousin I can ask for, honestly. The family and I are just in disbelief that something like this has happened to her. We just ask for prayers at this time.”