Attorney: Danielle Locklear’s killer is ‘well-mannered teen’

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Children dealing with adult situations, and operating with juvenile minds.

That's how the defense for a Cumberland County teen describes what led 17-year-old Je'Michael Malloy to killing his young ex-girlfriend, 15-year-old Danielle Locklear, according to WTVD-TV.

"All we ask is for the public to remember is that you're talking about a 15-year-old victim and a 17-year-old defendant," said Fayetteville defense attorney D.W. Bray. "And we know 15-year-old kids don't make wise decisions, and neither do 17-year-old boys, and that what he is-a boy."

Earlier in the week, Malloy admitted to choking Locklear to death, then enlisting the help of a friend and classmate to dump the girl's body in the South River. That friend, 18-year-old Dominic Lock, was initially charged with conspiracy, but a day later faced second-degree murder charges along with Malloy.

The two are Cape Fear High School seniors. Locklear was a freshman at South View High School.

Wednesday evening, Lock posted a $100,000 bond. Efforts to reach out to him have been unsuccessful. Bray said he's advised Malloy to stay in jail, partly to "purge," and partly to separate from a community passionate about the high profile case.

"I think there's a sense of relief internally for him that he's admitted his level of culpability in this situation, and has been put in a position at least to start demonstrating some remorse and also moving forward. Also realizing that a substantial bit of his future may be impacted."

Bray said Malloy is a well-mannered teen who enjoyed fishing and hunting. He said he never had a violent history or a juvenile record. He was set to enlist in the Marines after graduation.

"We're not talking about a cold-hearted monster," he said. "We're talking about a very decent young man."

"I think it's important to note that Je'Michael came forward to law enforcement," added Bray. "This was lying heavily on his heart, and not only did he want to provide closure for Danielle's family, he wanted to provide closure for himself."

When asked why it took Malloy three weeks to confess, after he'd liked a Facebook page to "Help Find Danielle Locklear," and after he attended a memorial balloon release for the girl, Bray boiled it down to juvenile emotions.

"And well, that's a very reasonable question but again, we're talking about a 17 year old and a 17 year old with that stressful and heavy-some of a burden, it's not unreasonable to be silent."

"Lost in this--we don't want the focus to just be on the defendant or Danielle," he continued. "I think after all the facts come out in this case, this may be a learning experience for many young people in the community."

Locklear's family declined to immediately respond to Bray's comments, instead they say they'll do it as a large family unit, but they fiercely disagree with the attorney's thoughts.

Meanwhile, more than 14,000 supporters on the "Justice for Danielle Locklear" page are encouraging people to write Cumberland County District Attorney Billy West, and push him to seek first degree murder charges in the case. Sources close to the case maintain Malloy made prior threats to Locklear that would satisfy pre-meditation.

Bray said evidence would prove otherwise, but it may take up to 18 months for a true bill of indictment, and another year before the case is resolved through trial or a plea deal.

Source: WTVD-TV


  • Richard Nance

    Where did this Sleaze so called Lawyer come from, actually I don’t care if this Murderer is Only 17 years old & is “Well-Mannered”, so was Jack the Ripper plus Malloy Pre-Meditated Murdering Danielle Locklear & then went out & searched for her with hundreds of other people searching for her further perpetrating a LIE, so Yes, give him the Death Penalty he’s a threat to Society & always will be…..

      • Lee

        Murder is way much more than a “mistake.” In fact, characterizing murder as a “mistake” trivializes both the crime he committed as well as the value of Danielle Locklear’s life, her personhood, and the harm he did her. He made a very adult decision and he should do adult time or death penalty if they can prove premeditation.

    • NobodyAtAll

      So then what is your take on Susan Smith? And Jack the Ripper didn’t exist, that was made up by journalist Thomas Bulling in 1888..As far as being a threat to society, so is about half of all licensed drivers…

  • mimilll

    A well mannered teen ….really??????? Any person, whether young or old who kills another person can NOT be considered *well mannered*…there is something VERY wrong with this picture. I do understand that this attorney has probably been appointed to represent this young man. He may NOT have a violent history….but he sure had a VIOLENT MIND to do what he did, no matter what he was at the time….he is indeed a *KILLER* now.

  • Frank Martin

    He should be tried as an adult and he did know right from wrong and he is not a nice little kid or else he would not have done what he did. The nice guys with a good attitude and no records are the ones that will kill you dead. Have you read the news here lately? And they will try to cover it up any way they can because they are guilty and know they done wrong. He is a danger to society and always will be now. You are either a killer or you are not. Everyone has bad thoughts because what people have done to them in this sorry state or where ever , and many have a house full of weapons, so what? , some would not even be able to kill their bunny rabbit that is going to die. You get the point? So, what you think all you sorry head shrinks out there?

  • sinnerfrank

    Why is fox8 letting his lawyer try his case and attempt to alter public opinion before this case hits the court house !! This is how change of venue is allowed !! Yea just like the rest of the bad-boy killers time to square up and behave when your trying to get away with murder !! TYPICAL !! Punkase !!

  • Smith

    i grew up with one of Danielle’s grandmothers. She is hurting in a way too deep to measure. I believe that any human who murders another human, makes a decision to gag & dump the body in a river, enlists help to do so from another person to cover his crime, pretends to be concerned with finding her alive and well, fakes sympathy and continues with his life has demonstrated the same mindset it takes to be a serial killer. When a decent person kills for whatever reason and goes into panic, they usually run and the body is found. It took a cold mastermind to do all that was done. After all, why would a dead girl need to be gagged before being thrown into a river weighted down? Look at your children; think of Danielle. How would you want this man tried and yes, regardless of age, his actions made him a man.

  • Jb

    Wel Mr.Counselor introduce him to ur daughter an lets c if u still think he is well mannered.. isn’t giv a dammm about his manners did he giv a damm bout her life..he’ll naw he didn’t..turn ur lawyer license ova u fool

  • Dean Behrr

    Why is this thugs lawyer acting like this 17 year old is a little child? I knew before age six that you didn’t murder people. Oh, he has nice manners so he should just get a slap on the wrist.

    • rembrandt

      It’s the Trayvon factor, these sleazy ambulance chases try to paint these little thugs like they’re victims to.gain cultural and gender favor

  • kristina

    Manners have nothing to do with killing someone, you can kill someone and have the best manners. Look at the president and how many people he has killed.. There are people out there that make money for killing people, are government is fucked up, it teaches us its ok to kill to hide a body and be scared of life in prison. teleivision shows people news, I almost got away with it, and this is how I got caught.. the world is just fucked up..

  • bella07

    I have no compassion for any one that takes a life. He is plenty old enough to know right from wrong. He should be locked up for a very long time or maybe even life.

  • Jessica

    It’s so easy to be mad at this boy because of the things he’s done. I don’t think that anyone will be able to forget what he’s done and be okay with it because it’s completely unacceptable! But I as a Christian I believe that we are all suppose to forgive and pray for the ones who hurt us. The bible says there is no sin greater than the other, they all weigh the same. Now that doesn’t mean one doesn’t hurt more than the other but they are all equal. Forgiving him doesn’t mean we are saying “it’s okay Malloy”, it’s moving on and focusing in the real problem… the loss of Danielle. Killing this boy will not bring Danielle back, but rather we like it or not we are ALL sinner that deserves forgiveness. Id like to think that Jesus died on the cross for more than just the sins of thiefs and liars. I pray that he can build a relationship with God while he’s in there and that the families affected in this tragedy can get some peace and closure. God bless you all

  • Lee

    “He’s a well mannered teen who enjoys fishing and hunting.” Of course he does! He enjoys fishing for young girls, then hunting them down and killing them!

  • denise

    What he did was wrong but should be forgiven its up to God to judge not man. We have all sin at some point and time in our life and like someone stated no sin is greater than the other. My heart goes out to Dannie’s family. I pray that he turns his life over to God and follow a righteous path. A life can never be restored after death but her memories will never be forgotten. She was a beautiful person.

  • nb

    YES what he did was wrong but I feel as a parent myself that danielle should not left the house at 9;30 at the age of fifteen year old. Why were they dating anyway. it seen like she was living a fast life because she mat him why she was in the eight grade. I don’t like talking about other people kids but I think she should;ve been in the house at 9;30 on a school night. We need more old school parent and not parents leting kids do what they want to do. I am just sorry to many flag goes up with this boyfriend and girlfriend and she’s in the 9th grade and he’s in the 12th grade.. why wasnt the mother raising her child.

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