An 18-year-old Conway student accused in his brother's shooting death is considering a plea offer extended by prosecutors.
Malique Decardo Cooks is charged with manslaughter in the June 7 shooting death of his half brother, 22-year-old Damien Hardy.
Manslaughter is a Class C felony and is punishable by three to 10 years in prison and potentially carries a fine of up to $10,000.
On Tuesday, Joan Shipley, deputy prosecuting attorney, proposed a negotiated plea deal in Cook's case.
Cooks' attorney, Lynn Plemmons, requested a few weeks to give Cooks time to weigh out his options, noting this was a "very emotionally involved" case.
Circuit Judge Charles "Ed" Clawson Jr. agreed to "give [Cooks] the opportunity to review the circumstances" of the plea offer and scheduled a pretrial hearing in Cook's case for Jan. 4.
Cooks, who was previously held on a $100,000 bond, was released from the county jail on a $20,000 bond.
According to a probable cause affidavit, Cooks said he accidentally shot his brother June 7 while they were "trash talking" each other.
Cooks admitted to shooting Hardy on the night in question.
"After being Mirandized again, Cooks admitted to shooting Hardy," the affidavit reads. "Cooks said the two were 'trash talking' each other. Cooks said his gun, later identified as a Smith and Wesson 10mm pistol, was sitting on the table. Cooks told detectives that he usually does not have a round chambered. He said he picked up the gun, thinking it would not fire, pointed it at Hardy, disengaged the safety, and pulled the trigger."
As he was retelling to officers what happened earlier that night, Cooks remembered putting a round in the chamber.
"He insisted during the interview that at the time he pulled the trigger, he believed the chamber was empty and that the gun would not fire," the affidavit reads. "However, he also stated that, thinking back, he remembered chambering a round earlier."
Court documents note there was a visible blood trail from the parking lot where Hardy was found to his apartment.
Police collected a pair of Air Jordan shoes as well as a blue shirt as evidence from the College View Apartment complex's parking lot the night of the shooting incident.
Police noted there was no sign of a struggle at the apartment and that Cooks was cooperative with authorities on the night in question.