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WILLIS, TX -- On Monday, January 23, 2023, Montgomery County District Attorney's Office prosecutor Wesley LeRouax selected a jury in the State of Texas vs. Sherman Dewayne Griffin for first-degree murder. Over the next two days, jurors heard testimony from various witnesses, along with two recorded interviews of Griffin himself. During the interviews, Griffin admitted to shooting Keimauri Rogers, 17, in front of Griffin's home but claimed he did so in self-defense. Griffin shot the unarmed Rogers four times.
Jurors listened to testimony from law enforcement with the Willis Police Department and Montgomery County Sheriff's Office. These officers and deputies described their investigation in this case and detailed their interactions with the Griffin the day of and the night before this homicide. Specifically, officers and deputies described how they warned Griffin that there was no right to shoot a person simply because they are on your property. Despite these warnings, Griffin fatally shot Mr. Rogers.
During the guilt phase, jurors were called upon to determine whether Griffin's claim of self-defense was sufficient under the law to justify his conduct. After less than an hour of deliberation, the jury determined that Sherman Griffin was not justified, finding him guilty in the shooting death of Kcimauri Rogers. Before trial, Griffin elected to have Judge Maginnis assess his sentence.
On Thursday, January 26, 2023, Judge Patty Maginnis began the punishment phase of the trial. Assistant District Attorney LeRouax presented additional evidence of Griffin's criminal history, including testimony from Willis Police Department officers who described multiple interactions with Griffin related to drugs and gun violence. Judge Maginnis also heard compelling testimony from Keimauri Rogers' family about who Keimauri was as a person and what his loss meant to them.
Following closing arguments, Judge Maginnis sentenced Griffin to 75 years in the Texas Department of Corrections. Griffin will become eligible for parole after serving thirty years.
Prosecutor Wesley LaRouax: 'Sherman Griffin executed Keimauri Rogers after luring him into an ambush, then tried to call it self-defense. After almost a year of waiting, Keimauri's family heard the jury tell Griffin exactly what this was—murder. With this verdict, Griffin's days of terrorizing the Willis community are over.'
District Attorney Brett Ligon: 'Mr. Griffin took the life of another, and it is fitting and just that he will forfeit the better part of his adult years for that act. We hope that the family of Mr. Rogers can take some measure of comfort in knowing that Griffin has been held accountable for his actions.”