James Yates Held in Connection with Shooting Death of Andre Joyner

Judge Karen Howze ordered James Walter Yates III held without bond Tuesday in connection with the afternoon shooting death of 29-year-old Andre Pierce Joyner. Yates, 29, was arrested Monday on suspicion on second-degree murder while armed.

On April 25, Joyner was found unconscious and unresponsive, suffering from multiple gunshot wounds, across the street from Ludlow-Taylor Elementary School at about 3:30 p.m., according to charging documents.

Documents say that about a week earlier, on Easter Sunday, Yates and Joyner got into an argument after Yates parked directly behind Joyner’s car, according to a witness. That witness told police that Joyner pulled out a black handgun, pointed it at Yates and stated something to the effect of “I will bust you.”

Five days later, another witness said that a man it didn’t recognize approached Joyner and the two men “exchanged words as if they were going to fight,” according to arrest documents.

Then the unknown man shot Joyner several times, according to the witness. Charging documents say the witness believed that Joyner didn’t see that the other man had a gun.

Documents say an MPD officer who arrived on the scene received the “the tag number of the vehicle that the guy got into” from a witness who observed the shooting but didn’t provide their identifying information before leaving. Documents say that a different witness told police that the shooter left in a fairly new blue-gray Nissan Altima.

Charging documents say that after a lookout was broadcast for the vehicle’s license plate number, an MPD officer determined that a matching vehicle was registered to Yates’s home address.

Five and a half hours later, detectives executed a search warrant at Yates’ home address and found a gun and ammunition matching shells recovered from the scene of the shooting. Detectives also found clothing that matched descriptions given by witnesses.

Defense attorney Madalyn Harvey argued that there was evidence that the death was in self-defense, and therefore no reason to hold Yates.

Joyner “not just five days prior had a gun and had threatened my client,” said Harvey.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for 9:30 a.m. on May 30 before Judge Russell Canan.

Charging documents have been added below.

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