Raleigh man pleads guilty to 2007 murder


Twenty-six-year-old Arthur Lee Gaines was charged last year with first-degree murder in the shooting death of another Raleigh man, 30-year-old Damarkos Thorpe.

Monday Gaines' trial was postponed indefinitely after it was discovered that a Raleigh police detective never typed up notes from the case taken more than a year ago.

That issue is a moot point now after Gaines. In a surprise move, he agreed to plead guilty to second degree murder.

The shooting happened early in June 2007 when two groups of friends, who had been to a local nightclub, began arguing.

Witnesses said Gaines not only shot and killed Thorpe, but also shot an injured another man. That's why Gaines had also been charged with attempted murder.

In Tuesday's plea bargain, that charge was reduced to assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury. Gaines' combined sentence on that charge and on the second-degree murder charge is 25 to 31 years in prison.

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