An Oakland man was convicted of murdering his neighbor’s boyfriend and attempted murder of another man despite self-defense claim.
A jury last month found Vick Malone, 66, guilty of first-degree murder for the death of Ernest McMurry, 50, and attempted murder of McMurry’s uncle.
According to reports, the three men got into an argument in November 2016 over tree trimmings and ended when McMurry was shot in the head by Malone.
McMurry had parked his car in his girlfriend’s driveway next to Malone’s property. As Malone did yard work, using a hedge trimmer to trim a tree, clippings fell onto McMurry’s car.
Malone said he offered to use a leaf blower to remove the trimmings, but McMurry ran out of the house and pulled a knife. So, Malone pulled out his own knife.
At this point, the two and McMurry’s uncle got into a knife fight, so Malone went inside to grab a shotgun. Instead of calling police, Malone said it wasn’t on his mind. “Someone was threatening my life,” he said.
Malone opened fire, trying to scare McMurry, but the shot struck the back of his head. And then the shotgun malfunctioned before Malone could shoot at McMurry’s uncle.
Malone faces 50 years to life in prison for the two counts, plus enhancement uses of personal and intentional use of a firearm. He will be sentenced in May.