Information on witnesses in Marley Lion case to be protected

Published: Mar. 6, 2013 at 5:14 PM EST|Updated: Mar. 6, 2013 at 9:52 PM EST
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Marley Lion was murdered on June 16. (Source: Marley Lion Music Festival website)
Marley Lion was murdered on June 16. (Source: Marley Lion Music Festival website)
Julius Brown, Ryan Deleston, Bryan Rivers and George Brown. (Source: CCDC)
Julius Brown, Ryan Deleston, Bryan Rivers and George Brown. (Source: CCDC)

WEST ASHLEY, SC (WCSC) - Names and personal information of witnesses in the murder case of a 17 year old will be protected.

Solicitor Scarlett Wilson said any identifying information of witnesses in the fatal shooting case of Marley Lion will be redacted.

Court officials had originally announced that a court hearing was scheduled on Wednesday for Ryan Deleston, who is accused of fatally shooting Lion at a parking lot in West Ashley last summer.

Wilson said both her office and defense attorneys agreed to redact personal information of witnesses who agreed to come forward and cooperate with what information they knew.

"This makes it a few steps harder for anyone out on the street to have this information and to put it together," Wilson said. "Is it impossible? No. But it makes it makes it not easy, it doesn't give them a layup, slam dunk for identifying people who frankly just don't need to be identified."

Court documents state Deleston said he, Julius Brown, and Bryan Rivers had actually planned to rob Famous Joe's during the early-morning hours of June 16, rather than anyone in the parking lot. Deleston told police Lion "interrupted their plan" so they decided to rob him instead.

Lion had pulled into the parking lot to take a nap inside his Nissan Pathfinder in the parking lot at 1662 Savannah Highway because he was "too intoxicated to drive," according to an incident report.

Ironically, the decision would prove fatal.

An affidavit states Julius Brown performed a "surveillance sweep" of the parking lot and Lion's vehicle, to determine the number of occupants and to check for any pedestrian presence.

Deleston said he and Rivers then attempted to carry out the robbery. Police say Deleston was the one who fired shots after Lion sounded the vehicle alarm.

Rivers told investigators during a July 30 interview, "He shot that white boy for nothing."

Since Charleston police say the attack was a coordinated effort, all three suspects were charged with murder and attempted armed robbery in addition to other charges.

The affidavit also clarifies the involvement of 27-year-old George Brown, who faces a charge of accessory after the fact of murder.

Court documents state George Brown brought the handgun which killed Lion to Deleston on July 15, just minutes before police purchased the murder weapon through a confidential informant.

At the time of his death, Lion had recently graduated from Academic Magnet High School and was set to attend Clemson University.

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