Two teens are jailed in killing over dice

Published 11:49 am Thursday, June 2, 2011

Two teenagers, including a 14-year-old, have been arrested in the slaying Tuesday of a Vicksburg man after an argument over a dice game, police said.

Kendall Oliver, 14, 2200 Marshall St., and Michael Jackson, 19, 1717 Martha St., were arrested Wednesday in the killing of Robert Banks, 19, 226 High Hill Drive, said Lt. Bobby Stewart of the Vicksburg Police Department. Both are believed to have participated in securing the weapon used in the shooting, police said.

James Ransom, 19, 1717 Martha St., whom police have said fired the shot that killed Banks, remained in the county jail without bond.

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Stewart said Oliver, a student at Warren Central Junior High School who was charged as an adult, surrendered at Vicksburg police headquarters and was in the Warren County Jail this morning on a $75,000 bond. Jackson was arrested in Memphis and is being held there for Vicksburg police.

On Wednesday, Vicksburg Municipal Court Judge Nancy Thomas ordered Ransom held without bond because he was on a $15,000 bond for armed robbery at the time of the shooting.

The cases against all three are expected to be presented to the Warren County grand jury that convenes in October, District Attorney Ricky Smith said. The cases could not be ready for the grand jury that meets in July.

Smith said the grand jury will decide whether to charge Oliver and Jackson with murder or accessory before the fact.

A conviction on either charge, he said, carries a sentence of life without parole.

Stewart said Banks, Ransom, Oliver, Jackson and several other people were involved in the dice game.

“Something happened during that game that resulted in someone getting upset and starting an argument,” he said.

Police said Ransom was standing on the porch of his home at 1717 Martha St. about 4 p.m. Tuesday when he shot Banks, who was in the street.

Banks was taken to River Region Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead at 5:15 p.m. Tuesday.

Stewart said authorities are still looking for the handgun.

Warren County Coroner Doug Huskey said Banks died from a single gunshot wound to the chest, but the bullet was not found during the autopsy.

Banks’ death was the second homicide reported in Warren County in the past week. It was the third in the city and the sixth overall in the county.

On May 26, Gerald Wayne “Jerry” Allen, 36, 1626 Broadhill Drive, was gunned down as he stepped out of a vehicle on Dillon Ridge Road in north Warren County. His father, Winifred Allen, 64, 2255 Freetown Road, Lot 1, remains in the Warren County Jail on a charge of murder.

Earlier last week, Michael Justin Tornero, 26, of Houston, who was working in Vicksburg, was shot and died in a motel room. His roommate and co-worker, Daniel O’Neil Dodd, 28, Tyler, Texas, was released from the county jail on a $32,000 bond. Police have said they believe the shooting was accidental. Smith said the Dodd case will be presented to the July grand jury.

Another shooting death last week was ruled accidental. Richard “Ricky” Selby, 62, 4747 Bovina Cutoff Road, died as he attempted to take something from the trunk of a vehicle and a loaded gun discharged and hit him in the chest.