No murder charge for man in Springfield shooting death

A man arrested in connection with a 19-year-old’s shooting death in Springfield will not face a murder charge, a prosecutor said Tuesday.

A Clark County grand jury declined to indict Derrick Clerk, 26, of Springfield, for murder, Clark County Assistant Prosecutor Brian Driscoll said.

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The grand jury did indict Clerrk on a tampering with evidence charge. Driscoll said the charge stems from Clerk allegedly getting rid of the gun used in the shooting.

Clerk was the main suspect in the 2015 death of Shaquan Newby. Newby was found dead in October in the front yard of a home on South Yellow Springs Street. He had been shot at least once, according to court records.

Driscoll said he suspects the grand jury declined the murder charge because Clerk may have been defending himself.

“There was some evidence of self-defense, that the alleged victim was in the process of robbing the defendant, and used self-defense to stop him,” Driscoll said.

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Witnesses at the scene of the shooting told detectives that Clerk and Newby appeared to get into an argument before shots were fired, according to court records.

Clerk fled the state after the shooting, authorities said, and was not arrested until August 2016 in Detroit. He recently was extradited back here, where a grand jury decided not to indict him on the murder charge.

The homicide case is now put on hold, Driscoll said. Authorities will bring the case back to the grand jury if new evidence comes to light, he said.

“If a new witness comes forward or something like that, we will take it back to the grand jury,” he said.

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