By DON FLETCHER
News Staff Writer
Three Atmore men who were last together June 19 are now fellow inmates in the Santa Rosa County, Fla. Jail after the third member of the trio was extradited from the Escambia County Detention Center last Friday, June 30.
Ty’jerrious Keon Malone, 20, of Atmore was charged last week with first-degree murder in the slaying of Joseph R. Liebe, 24, of Pace, who was shot inside his car during an apparent robbery attempt.
Malone joins 20-year-old Jacobey Quartise James and Marcus Terel Dickinson, 29, both also of Atmore, in the Florida lockup. Malone and James are accused of shooting Liebe and are charged with first-degree murder (murder committed while engaged in a robbery). Dickinson, whose gun was used in the shooting, is charged as an accomplice with second-degree murder.
The homicide took place near the intersection of North Wallace Lake Road and Quintette Road, outside Pace, after the accused offenders stopped at a convenience store in Cantonment on their way home from work in Pensacola, Fla.
According to Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Office reports, Dickinson told investigators he went inside the store while James waited outside in Dickinson’s vehicle.
Dickinson said when he returned to the vehicle, James — who apparently saw that the soon-to-be murder victim had a large sum of money on his person — told him to follow Liebe, who was reportedly unknown to the duo.
SRCSO deputies were sent around 6:30 p.m. to the rural site to investigate a crashed Toyota just off the roadway, in the wood line. Deputies “identified defects to the vehicle which looked consistent with bullet holes.” The driver, later identified as Liebe, was unresponsive and was declared dead at the scene.
Ten spent 9mm shell casings were discovered in the roadway leading to the crashed vehicle.
Witnesses told lawmen they saw a maroon Chevy Tahoe with “paint defects and an Alabama tag” flee the scene shortly after they heard gunshots and the sound of the vehicle crashing.
Detectives with the SRCSO Major Crimes Unit secured surveillance video from an unspecified business near the scene and learned that Liebe’s Toyota passed by at about 6:20 p.m., immediately followed by a Tahoe fitting the description given by witnesses.
At 6:27 p.m., the same Tahoe was seen passing back by the business, headed toward Escambia County, Ala.
While Florida authorities were putting together evidence on which to base a search warrant, Dickinson told his wife his 9mm handgun had been stolen from his vehicle earlier that day, while he was at work. Dickinson’s wife called Escambia County, Ala. authorities and reported the theft.
Deputies arrived at the couple’s Jack Springs Road residence just before 8 p.m. to take the stolen gun report. The maroon Tahoe was at the site.
The next day, June 20, while a search warrant was being executed, detectives interviewed Dickinson, who reportedly waived his Miranda rights and told them James “had access to his pistol all day.”
Dickinson was arrested then; James surrendered to ECSO (Ala.) officers the next day. No report was available indicating what led authorities to Malone, who was arrested June 27.
Florida Criminal Code shows that a conviction for first-degree murder has only two possible outcomes — the death penalty or life in prison. A conviction for second-degree murder could result in a sentence of life in prison or life on probation.