Dover man pleads guilty to firearm charges in Port Mahon killing

 

DOVER — A 23-year-old Dover man charged after an alleged murder at the Port Mahon fishing pier in 2016 pled guilty to three felonies Thursday and could receive 18 years in prison when sentenced in September.

Zhyhee Harmon admitted to two counts of possession of a firearm by a person prohibited and second-degree conspiracy to close three separate cases against him. He and two co-defendants were earlier charged with first-degree murder after Dontray Hendricks, 24, of Dover, was shot to death during an alleged robbery attempt of March 29, 2016, according to police.

Harmon — arrested on May 4, 2016 — will spend a mandatory minimum of 10 years in prison based on the plea. Superior Court Resident Judge William L. Witham Jr. set a sentencing date of Sept. 13 and ordered a pre-sentence investigation.

During an appearance lasting just over 10 minutes at the Kent County Courthouse, Harmon said he understood the ramifications of his plea and acknowledged that he had received competent counsel leading up to it.

A defense attorney referenced Harmon’s IQ of 67, which he said would have presented problems if presented in a capital murder trial, if applicable.

Zhyhee Y. Harmon

The two firearms convictions could bring 5 to 8 years in prison each during sentencing, with the conspiracy count covering 0 to 2 years.

A trial had been scheduled for June 19.

Deputy Attorney General Jason Cohee declined comment afterward, as did Mr. Hendricks’ family members who attended the hearing.

Still awaiting trial are defendants Chelsea Braunskill, 19 when arrested, and Daiquan T. Bordley, 22 at the time, who were both indicted on first-degree murder, second-degree conspiracy and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony counts.

Judge Witham ordered Harmon not to contact Ms. Braunskill and Mr. Bordley, and said a fine and restitution may be imposed. Harmon agreed not to appeal his case to the Delaware Supreme Court.

When announcing arrests in 2016, the Delaware State Police said Mr. Bordley allegedly shot Mr. Hendricks in the torso during an altercation before fleeing. Authorities said Ms. Braunskill arrived with Mr. Hendricks at Port Mahon and was allegedly aware of a plot to rob him of drugs and money.

According to police, Harmon and Mr. Bordley allegedly fled in one vehicle and Ms. Braunskill left the scene in Mr. Hendricks’ car. The late Mr. Hendricks had driven to the pier after first picking up Ms. Braunskill at Delaware State University and had plans to smoke marijuana with her, authorities alleged.

In an affidavit of probable cause, police alleged that Mr. Harmon sold a Cobra .380 handgun the day after the shooting death.

Reach staff writer Craig Anderson at canderson@newszap.com

You are encouraged to leave relevant comments but engaging in personal attacks, threats, online bullying or commercial spam will not be allowed. All comments should remain within the bounds of fair play and civility. (You can disagree with others courteously, without being disagreeable.) Feel free to express yourself but keep an open mind toward finding value in what others say. To report abuse or spam, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box.