Elba man on trial this week for Opp murder

Published 9:09 am Tuesday, January 23, 2018

The trial of an Elba man facing murder and attempted murder charges in the June 2014 shooting in an Opp night club is under way. Jury selection began Monday, and opening arguments begin later this week.

Kanavis Malik Cole is charged with murder for the shooting death of 20-year-old Demetrice Hines and the attempted murder of 26-year-old James Danshay Edwards.

Cole allegedly opened fire at approximately 1:30 in the Little Harlem Club the morning of June 8, 2014. The club has since been closed.

Enterprise attorney Gary Bradshaw is defending Cole.

Bradshaw previously filed a motion seeking immunity under stand your ground, arguing that Cole’s actions were made “in reasonable self-defense and/or reasonable defense of others.”

Judge Lex Short denied that motion in March of 2017.

Three shots were fired in the night club, injuring five, law enforcement officials said in a June, 2014 press conference. Two months before his death, in April of 2014, Hines posted on social media, “Ima dead man walkn.” He was shot in the side of the torso.

But both family members and law enforcement said during that press conference they believed the post was coincidental. There was no bad blood between Cole and Hines, they said. Instead, they believed that Edwards was the intended target. Opp Chief Mike McDonald said in that press conference that Edwards sustained gunshot wounds to his shoulder and neck that were “almost critical.” McDonald also said the incident appeared to have been the result of people just bumping into each other on the dance floor.

When officers responded to the call at the club in 2014, all five victims had been transported to the hospital in private vehicles.

Cole was 23 at the time of the shooting.