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Hendry pleads in C’Asia Patton shooting death

Matt Masters • Jul 9, 2018 at 3:30 PM

Joseph Hendry, 23, of Nashville, pleaded guilty to second-degree murder Monday morning and was sentenced to 25 years in prison without the possibility of parole for his participation in the drive-by shooting that killed 13-year-old C’Asia Patton in 2015 as she slept in her grandmother’s Lebanon home.

Hendry was one of four suspects charged in connection with Patton’s death and may be called to testify against the remaining three suspects, Marvin Andre Bryant, 21, of Goodlettsville, Timothy Lorenzo Wade, 26, of Lebanon, and Bailey Alexander Underwood, 20, of Lebanon, as a part of his plea deal. Bryant and Wade are charged with first-degree murder, while Underwood is charged as an accessory after the fact and tampering with evidence.

Wilson County criminal court Judge Brody Kane handed down the sentence and allowed to Hendry face Patton’s family and read a statement in court Monday, where he apologized and expressed regret for his actions.

“I fully accept responsibility for my actions and attempt to tell the truth and everything that happened that day,” Hendry said, “I’m terribly sorry for yall’s loss.”                 

Patton’s grandmother, Minnie McReynolds, issued an impassioned response to Hendry and condemned his actions.

“You not only murdered her, but you’ve damaged and affected and changed the lives of her aunts and siblings, as well as her mother, myself and all of her those who loved her. Why? So you could prove to a group of young, unseasoned, uneducated, naïve boys that you are what the streets call ‘hard?’ I don’t see you as hard. Hardness stands up; hardness admits and takes responsibility for their choices,” McReynolds said, “You did a crime. Now step up to the plate and claim your reward.”

Patton died Jan. 8, 2015 at 12:30 a.m. at Vanderbilt University Medical Center from a single gunshot wound she received while she slept during a drive-by shooting Jan. 5 at her grandmother’s home at 411 Sycamore St. in Lebanon. The shooting, believed to be gang-related, resulted in 21 rounds fired from at least three different guns. Hendry openly spoke of his role in the shooting while in Nashville, which led to authorities to close in on him as a suspect. U.S. marshals arrested Hendry a week after Patton’s funeral at the Extended Stay Hotel in Brentwood. He remained in Wilson County Jail without bond. A Wilson County grand jury returned a seven-count indictment on Hendry in 2015.

Hendry, who was 19 at the time of the shooting, was originally charged with two counts of first-degree murder, four counts of aggravated assault and one count of criminal attempt. Bryant, Wade and Underwood were each charged in February 2017 for their roles in the shooting.

Patton’s death resulted in an outpouring of support for her and her family. Hundreds gathered at College Hills Church of Christ for Patton’s funeral. In attendance were local community and political leaders, ministers and school officials.

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