MAYS LANDING — A man accused in Atlantic City's first homicide of the year came to court Tuesday with an affidavit he said clears his sibling, who is also charged.
"I was just letting him go," Malik Derry, 21, told the judge during his first appearance.
"He's got nothing to do with nothing," Derry said, as his 32-year-old brother, Mykal, nodded his head next to him.
Malik and Mykal Derry were arrested Monday afternoon at the Motor Vehicle Commission in Egg Harbor Township and charged with murder, conspiracy and weapons offenses in the killing of Tyquinn James.
James, 25, was found fatally shot in the head outside Mecca Chicken on Adriatic Avenue at about 7:30 Sunday night.
"I have an affidavit I wrote," Malik Derry, 21, told Superior Court Judge Michael Donio.
"Pertaining to this case?" Donio asked.
"Yeah, pertaining to this case," Derry replied.
Donio told him that was something he would want to share with his attorney.
"That's not for today," the judge advised.
The brothers said they would be hiring an attorney. When Malik Derry said he would have the same one as his brother, Donio informed him that they would each need a lawyer.
Both men are being held in the Atlantic County Justice Facility on $1 million cash bail.
Mykal Derry is additionally charged with possession of a weapon by a convicted felon, due to a previous drug conviction.
When asked if there were any other requests, Mykal Derry said: "A speedy trial."
"That's duly noted," the judge replied. "You have to be indicted first."
He also said that a lawyer could request a probable cause hearing that would give insight into the state's case.
Contact Lynda Cohen:
Follow Lynda Cohen on Twitter @LyndaCohen