A man pleaded guilty Tuesday for the murder of a GameStop store manager in Marietta in 2007.
In a Cobb County courtroom, Patrick Graham muttered only a few words when the judge asked if he knew what he was doing when he entered a guilty plea in the case.
“Yes, your honor,” was his response, according to Channel 2 Action News, which covered the proceedings.
Graham has never cooperated or shown remorse for the murder, according to prosecutors.
Graham’s plea will keep him off death row, but will send him to prison for the rest of his life.
He admitted to robbing the Marietta GameStop store in 2007 and accosting, at gunpoint, store manager Matthew Cherry, a 21-year-old Kennesaw State student. He then forced Cherry, a co-worker and the co-worker’s father into a back room. According to court records, he later brought Cherry back out to clean out the cash register. Even though Cherry cooperated, Graham beat him, then tightly wrapped duct tape around his head, Channel 2 reported.
Graham kept his head bowed and eyes closed as the prosecutor told the judge in detail what had happened that night.
“The medical examiner’s conclusion was the victim was beaten and bound and was suffocated and this was a slow and tortuous death, lasting at a minimum a minute and a half but potentially minutes before he passed from the duct tape being placed around his head and neck,” Assistant District Attorney Jesse Evans said.
The crime so affected the Marietta Police Department that many who worked on the case came to see this final chapter. But it was too painful for Cherry’s family and other victims to come to court and re-live that night, according to Channel 2.
As he summarized what happened, it all came flooding back to Marietta Police Detective Jonnie Moeller.
“I just hope that brings some closure to the families,” she said.