BEAUFORT, N.C. (WNCT) — A former Navy corpsman was found guilty Monday afternoon of murdering a father and son in Beaufort in 2012.
Jhaden Davis was on trial for shooting and killing Duane Correll, 50, and Correll’s son, 20-year-old Albert, on Taylor Farm Road five years ago.
He was found guilty of two counts of first-degree murder and was sentenced to life in prison with no parole.
The state argued during two weeks of testimony the murder was an act of revenge about money owed to Davis.
The district attorney recounted how Davis followed the pair as they returned home from Walmart that Saturday evening in June and blocked them with his car before beating them and shooting them as they lay on the ground.
Thirty witnesses were called during the course of the testimony. Many of them were friends of Davis who testified that he used drugs and painted a picture of his failed Navy career, calling him a loser and failed specimen of a person.
The case was plagued with a number of challenges obtaining evidence.
“In this case, there were a number of different items that were taken from the victim, removed from the scene and even attempted to be disposed of,” Sheriff Asa Buck, Carteret Co., said.
One of those was Albert Correll’s wallet. The other, the murder weapon which remained missing for years.
The state contends Davis flung it in the Bogue Inlet, and a diver near the Emerald Isle Bridge searching for crabs found the gun two years ago.
“Once the pistol was found and processed and then able to be used as evidence in the case that was a great benefit to my prosecutor,” DA Scott Thomas said.
It is corroded, and the serial number is filed off but ballistics confirmed the weapon was used in the Correll slayings.
The defense also spoke on the lack of evidence in the case and pointed to that as Davis’s innocence.
‘In this particular case, we tried to explain to the jury that there was really nothing there regarding scientific evidence.,” Davis’s attorney, Dick McNeil, said.
Former Navy corpsman Joseph Pirrotta was initially charged with both men’s murders as well, but those charges were later dropped to accessory to a murder with a max of 10 years in prison, five of which he has already served.