Derrick Frazier was cheating on his wife, and so she decided to make him jealous by making up an affair of her own. But she didn’t count on her husband killing the other man.
At about 6 a.m. Thursday, police were called to the 1100 block of Fifth Street West in Bradenton to reports of gunfire. Officers arrived to find Dequan Randolph dead from an apparent gunshot wound.
Eyewitnesses, including Frazier’s wife, at the scene were able to provide detectives with the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office Homicide Investigative Unit details about what happened, enabling them to immediately identify Frazier as the suspect.
An alert was put out for Frazier and the Ford pickup truck he was driving and within three hours of the shooting he was in police custody.
On Friday afternoon Frazier, charged with second-degree murder, made his first appearance before Circuit Judge Gilbert Smith Jr. via video conference. Smith ordered Frazier be held without bond at the Manatee County jail.
Lead homicide detective Jim Curulla detailed what Frazier’s wife and a second eye-witness told him at the scene.
“She stated that she and Mr. Frazier had been been married since August and that he was seeing another female and she was trying to make him jealous so she made up a relationship with Mr. Randolph,” Curulla said.
Frazier’s wife was outside a home in the 1100 block of Fifth Street West along with the other eyewitness talking to Randolph when Frazier pulled up in the pickup truck.
“No words were exchanged,” Curulla said.
The witnesses said Frazier put the gun up to Randolph and shot him in the center of his chest, then walked away, got in the pickup truck and drove off. The Medical Examiner’s Office confirmed that Randolph had been shot at close range, the detective said.
Later when Frazier was interviewed by detectives, he gave several different accounts as to what happened, including first denying he had even been at the scene.
Frazier’s last account was that he had been driving past when he saw the victim with his wife, got out of the pickup truck and Randolph brandished a firearm and a struggle ensued, Curulla said. That conflicted with the ME’s report and the eyewitness accounts.
Frazier’s mother was in the courtroom, but she did not speak during the hearing.
Assistant State Attorney Art Brown argued the case against Frazier met the standards of the Arthur rule, based on a 1980 Florida Supreme Court ruling that “the proof of guilt is evident and the presumption of guilt is great.”
Smith ordered that Frazier be held without bond, and appointed the Public Defender’s Office to represent him until he hires a private attorney. Frazier indicated that he could afford to do so.