Judge sentences murderer
After three hours of deliberation, a jury convicted Nicolas McIver on all counts for the murder of Amanda Fisher in North Myrtle Beach in July 2016.
A judge sentenced McIver to 45 years behind bars, but his co-defendant didn’t receive the same fate.
The jury acquitted Terrell Freeman of murder and possession of a weapon during a violent crime, but did convict him of grand larceny. He was sentenced to five years in prison.
McIver and Freeman, both of Charlotte, were on trial for the killing of Fisher in a North Myrtle K&W parking lot in July 2016.
“The justice served today will help that family,” Assistant Solicitor Seth Oskin said following the hearing.
Prosecutors said McIver, Freeman and Fisher met in Myrtle Beach and then went to North Carolina. They returned to the North Myrtle Beach area, where Fisher was shot in the head while in a vehicle in a K&W parking lot.
The state said it believed McIver was the shooter while defense attorney for McIver and Freeman each called the other defendant the killer.
Freeman and McIver took Fisher’s body out of the car and left her dying in the parking lot.
McIver then drove Fisher's car to the Charlotte area, where he burned it. Freeman drove McIver's truck back to the Charlotte region.
The Fisher family sat in the front row for the trial and showed little emotion as guilty verdicts were announced against McIver for murder, grand larceny and possession of a weapon during a violent crime.
McIver’s family sat on the opposite side of the courtroom for the week-long trial and several cried after the verdict.
One woman had to leave the courtroom, unable to contain her emotions, and could be heard wailing in the hallway.
McIver didn’t move in his chair during the verdict. He also didn’t address the court during his sentencing. He wore dark pants, a tie and a light blue sweater, all which will be exchanged for prison-issued garb.
His attorney, Scott Bellamy, asked for the minimum, 30-year sentence.
“The minimum is a severe punishment,” Bellamy said.
Horry County Circuit Judge Steven John sentenced McIver to 45 years in prison on the murder charge. He also ordered separate five-year sentences for the other two counts, but those will run at the same time as his murder confinement.
“This is just an absolute tragedy, a senseless act,” John said. “And the court recognizes that no sentence that this court can give, obviously can’t bring the victim back. Can’t do anything, but place this matter at an end.”
Like McIver, Freeman stared ahead as the verdict was read. His lawyer, Martin Spratlin, patted Freeman on the back after the lone conviction.
Some people in the courtroom gasped and Fisher’s family members shifted in their seats when the jury found Freeman not guilty of murder.
John sentenced him to the maximum five years on the grand larceny count.
Oskin said the state wasn’t disappointed with the split verdict, though he added they still believe in their theory about what happened in the incident.
The verdict does help give the Fisher family some sense of justice, Oskin said.