Accused man turns himself in

Published 12:00 am Friday, December 2, 2011

By Nathan Hardin
SALISBURY — A Salisbury man accused of killing another at his ex-girlfriend’s house this week turned himself in Thursday night.
According to Salisbury Police, 20-year-old Terrell Jamal Bowman turned himself in at 8:30 p.m. at the Salisbury Police Department.
Bowman was charged with the murder of 32-year-old Dwante Patterson along with two outstanding charges of assault on a female. He is being held without bond on the murder charge.
Authorities say Bowman shot Patterson in the back Tuesday evening at 421 Mildred Ave.
Tracey Oglesby, Bowman’s mother, spoke to the Post in a phone interview Thursday morning and said she had asked her son to turn himself in when he called her shortly after the shooting.
“He is not that type of person,” Oglesby said. “He was crying. He was very remorseful.”
Oglesby said she and her son knew Patterson because they had lived near him in Weant Street Apartments about 10 years ago when Oglesby lived in Salisbury. She now lives Durham.
“We know Dwante,” she said. “Dwante lived down there, too. My heart goes out to Dwante’s family and Terrell is really sorry about it.”
Oglesby said she spoke to her 20-year-old son twice Tuesday night, but said he wouldn’t tell her where he was because he didn’t want to get them in trouble.
“Terrell is very adamant about it. He did not mean to kill Dwante,” Oglesby said. “He was scared. He was scared for his life. He thought Dwante was going to kill him.”
Wendy Lilly, who lives at 412 Mildred Ave., dated Patterson for about eight years and had three children with him. Lilly said Patterson had come to the house that night to pay for a babysitter, when the incident with Bowman started.
Lilly said she had been dating Bowman for about 10 months and said last week was the first time she had seen him angry.
Oglesby said her son admitted to her that a week ago he had hit Lilly’s daughter, but said he regretted it and shouldn’t have done it.
“There was an incident between Wendy and Terrell last week where they got into it and Terrell hit her daughter” after the daughter allegedly got in his face, Oglesby said, “which was bad and he admits that.”
But Bowman told her he didn’t go to his room to get a gun, Oglesby said. She said he walked into his room to get away from Patterson. “He is not a violent person,” she said.
According to Oglesby, Bowman felt his life was in danger after Patterson followed him to the bedroom.
“If it was me in the same situation, I would do the exact same thing — if I was fearing for my life,” Oglesby said.
Bowman took a revolver from his bedroom and shot Patterson from behind in the upper torso, police said.
Family members told the Post that Bowman continued firing at Patterson as he chased him into the Mildred Avenue home’s front yard.
Patterson and Lilly’s 12-year-old son, Nautica, told the Post that Bowman kept firing until his revolver was empty.
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Oglesby said her son also asked for help in finding a lawyer when he called Tuesday night.
“ ‘Can you and dad get me a lawyer?’ ” she said Bowman asked. “I told him, ‘You know, a lawyer for a murder case is going to cost upwards of $25,000 to $50,000. We’re going to work on that.”
After being hit in the back, Patterson staggered behind a neighbor’s house. He was picked up by a neighbor, Lilly and his two sons.
An ambulance took Patterson, the father of 13, from the ice cream shop to Rowan Regional Medical Center. He was pronounced dead at about 6:15 p.m.
Lilly said her two daughters ran from the house when the shots were fired that night. She said they ran up Mildred Avenue. Shortly after that, Bowman ran by them and apologized.
According to Lilly, Bowman told them, “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to. I love y’all. I gotta go.”
Bowman’s mother said this shows her son’s remorse.
“Terrell is not a rampage murderer or something,” Oglesby said. “He apologized to her children. He loved them children. He didn’t mean to do this.”
Oglesby said Thursday morning that she wanted him to turn himself in because she was worried authorities might shoot Bowman if they catch up with him.
“I don’t want cops to be thinking that he’s some gun-toting thug and to shoot him up,” she said. “I don’t want to bury my son. There’s already been one life lost and there doesn’t need to be another one.”
She declined further comment Thursday night after her son’s arrest.
Bowman’s first court appearance is today.