CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Jury selection began Monday in the case of Brandon Levert "BG" Gray, who is accused of gunning down another man in a West Side alleyway last summer.
This week's trial will be Gray's second. In February, Kanawha Circuit Judge James Stucky was forced to declare a mistrial after a juror fell ill.
Police say Gray, 19, used cellphone text messages on June 8, 2011, to lure Timothy Thompson, 26, to an alley near the intersection of First Avenue and Stockton Street. When Thompson arrived, Gray allegedly shot him several times with a .38 caliber revolver.
Authorities say Thompson was targeted because he owed a drug debt.
Gray's former cellmate, Ernest Lyle Young Jr., testified in February that Gray had confided in him the details of the murder. Young himself is scheduled to stand trial later this year on charges he beat an elderly man to death in his Kellys Creek home.
Gray, according to Young, admitted that he ran from the alley to the Kanawha River and hurled the revolver into the water. He allegedly threw another weapon, a long-barreled .357 Magnum, into nearby brush.
It is not clear why Young was carrying a second weapon. Divers were unsuccessful in their search for the allegedly discarded revolver.
Young said that Gray returned to the alley a short time later "to see if he'd taken care of the job."
Gray's lawyer, John Sullivan, said that Young only testified in hopes of gaining a recommendation from prosecutors that he be allowed to post bail before his own murder trial.
Kanawha County assistant prosecutor Charles Miller has consistently opposed Young's release on bail.
Reach Zac Taylor at Zachary.Tay...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5189.