LOCKPORT – The attorney for a North Carolina woman charged as an accomplice in a Niagara Falls homicide said Monday in Niagara County Court that negotiations for a plea bargain are underway.
County Judge Matthew J. Murphy III adjourned the case until Feb. 18 and in the meantime allowed Cammesoa M. Williams, 42, to travel to Winston-Salem, N.C., for five days to visit her 13-year-old son.
Williams is free on a $5,000 bail bond but hasn’t been allowed to leave Niagara County since her arrest in connection with the Sept. 28 shooting death of her friend Tijuana Davis, 39, in the victim’s North Avenue home.
Williams’ boyfriend, Richard H. Moore, 50, of Winston-Salem, is charged with second-degree murder.
Attorneys in the case said at the Nov. 19 arraignment that Williams did not shoot Davis; she was allegedly shot once by Moore, who is in the County Jail in lieu of $300,000 bail.
Williams did fire a shot after Davis was already down, but it struck the wall, not the woman, prosecutors said.
Williams, a Lockport native, and Moore were in town to attend the wedding of Williams’ cousin, and they were expecting to stay with Davis until an argument erupted with fatal consequences.
Williams’ attorney, Herbert L. Greenman, said he’s been talking to Deputy District Attorney Doreen M. Hoffmann about a “pretrial resolution” for Williams, who is charged with second-degree criminal possession of a weapon.
“We’re not there yet,” Greenman said. “It makes sense there would be one sooner rather than later.”
Hoffmann said she hasn’t talked to Davis’ family yet about a plea deal.
Murphy said he would allow Williams to travel back to North Carolina for five days as long as a plan acceptable to him and Williams’ probation officer was worked out. He warned Williams that if she didn’t return, she would undoubtedly be caught and brought back to Lockport to face the court.
Meanwhile, Moore may lose his public defender because of a complicated conflict-of-interest situation. Assistant Public Defender Michael E. Benedict said Rodney Giove, a former public defender now working with the county Conflict Defender’s Office, is expected to rejoin the public defender’s staff in the next month or two.
Giove once represented a witness against Moore in a civil case some years ago, Benedict said, and it was unclear if Moore could waive that conflict. If he can’t, or won’t, he needs another attorney.
Murphy ordered the sides to return to court Friday to report on whether Moore needs to change lawyers.