Bradenton- testimony is set to begin Monday in the trial one of two men still facing charges in the 2015 fatal shooting of a Bradenton couple during a home invasion. Just before 4 a.m. July 9, 2015, Bradenton police were called to the 3900 block of Southern Parkway after a security alarm was triggered by the break-in at the home Esther Deneus and her boyfriend, Kantral Markeith Brooks, both 29, shared. Police arrived to find the couple shot dead. The couple’s children — between the ages of 1 and 11 at the time — were found near their parents’ bodies.
Trey Nonnombre, 20; Jimmie McNear, 20; and Terez Jones, 35, were each identified as the suspects in the murders after images from the home’s video surveillance system were released to the public. Each were later indicted on two counts of first-degree murder and armed home invasion. The state was seeking the death penalty against all three.
In May, however, Jones took a plea deal and agreed to be a witness against Nonnombre and McNear. Jones pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree murder and one count of armed burglary and was sentenced to 25 years in prison. Jones will now be required to testify this week against Nonnombre and later at McNear’s trial.
If convicted of first-degree murder, Nonnombre and McNear still face the death penalty. McNear is set to stand trial separately during a five-week trial period that begins Oct. 16, after the conclusion of another death penalty case in Sarasota that Circuit Judge Diana Moreland is presiding over.
Nonnombre’s trial got underway last week Monday, with jury selection. More than 150 potential jurors were questioned individually by Assistant State Attorneys Art Brown and Rebecca Muller and defense attorneys Daniel Hernandez and Bjorn Brunvand.
Potential jurors were initially only asked about their prior knowledge of the case because of media attention it received, scheduling hardships and regarding any strong feeling that may have for or against the death penalty during individual questioning. On Friday, the 54 remaining potential jurors were further questioned before a panel was selected.
The jury of 14 — made-up of six women and eight men — includes two alternates.
The trial will resume Monday morning with opening statements.