MONCKS CORNER — Marilyn Mitchell Porcher spent the week reliving the final moments of her son’s life.
In 2009, Reginald Porcher, 30, was gunned down in the street near Wando. His mother has spent his last three birthdays at his grave, waiting for justice. This week, she heard his accused killer, Ron Santa McCray, 46, of Wando, try to convince a jury that he killed Porcher in self-defense.
Ultimately, the jury didn’t believe his claim and found McCray guilty of murder Friday in Moncks Corner. A judge sentenced him to life in prison.
Porcher was the brother of Robert Porcher III, a former all-pro NFL football player for the Detroit Lions. He was in court with several members of his family and told the judge about the impact his brother’s death has had on them.
“Our family chain has been broken, not by sickness, old age, but by Ron McCray,” Robert Porcher said. “The impact of such an unexpected death has posed tremendous sadness on our family.”
During closing arguments, 9th Circuit Assistant Solicitor Bryan Alfaro held up the 12-gauge sawed-off shotgun that he said McCray used to kill Porcher on Sept. 16, 2009, on Jack Primus Road, off Clements Ferry Road.
“Don’t fear God, fear me.”
Those are McCray’s words after shooting Porcher, according to prosecutors.
McCray went looking for Porcher, whom he had known for years, with the gun in his hand, Alfaro said.
“He sees him with the gun and does what any reasonable person would do. He got in his truck and tried to get out of there,” Alfaro told the jury during closing arguments.
Five pellets from the buckshot went through the truck’s rear window and hit Porcher in the back and shoulder. He fell out of the truck, which continued to roll along the street, according to Alfaro.
“McCray is not done,” Alfaro told the jury. “[McCray] walks over to him and while Reggie is trying to get up, he kicks him and spits on him.”
Porcher had been hanging out with friends, family and neighborhood children who had just gotten off the school bus when McCray approached him, according to prosecutors.
“He murdered him. He did it in broad daylight in front of people that had known him for years,” Alfaro said.
Many of those witnesses who claimed to see McCray shoot Porcher testified this week. McCray himself also took the stand Thursday.
He told the jury he went looking for Porcher that day to talk to him about an accusation involving a former girlfriend that had been made against Porcher. He claims Porcher reached for something in his truck and he shot at him in self-defense.
It took the jury less than an hour to find McCray guilty of murder. As the judge considered his sentence, McCray apologized to the family but contended it was an accident and that Porcher went at him in “a violent manner.”
Porcher had been arrested nearly a dozen times since 2000 and convicted of crimes including assault and burglary. His mother addressed her son’s past in court.
“Reginald was not an angel. He had his issues like everyone else, but he did not deserve to be gunned down like a wild animal and kicked in the face as he lay dying on the cold hard ground, pulling for his last breath,” she said.