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SIMS PLEADS GUILTY IN ’07 DOUBLE SHOOTING

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Facing a second trial after a Monmouth County jury deadlocked on attempted murder charges, Anthony Sims has pleaded guilty to shooting two brothers in Red Bank in November, 2008, the Asbury Park Press reports.

According to the Press, the 21-year-old Eatontown resident

pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree attempted passion provocation manslaughter, admitting he did shoot brothers Brandon Graves, 24, and Anthony Graves Jr., 28, both of Eatontown, on the evening of Nov. 26, 2007 outside the Montgomery Terrace apartment complex off Tilton Avenue.

Answering questions from defense attorney Robert J. Konzelmann, Sims maintained the Graves brother provoked him, but withdrew the self-defense claims presented at trial.

Sims also pleaded guilty to one count of possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose.

Assistant Monmouth County Prosecutor Marc Lemieux pressed Sims about the gun to determine where he found it and where he disposed of it after the shootings.

Sims explained he found the gun in a closet inside his girlfriend’s apartment, and said he knew the gun belonged to the girl’s brother, Anthony Morris.

Sims said he got rid of the gun by tossing it into the Navesink River as he sat as a passenger in a car.

“As I drove by I tossed it out the window,” Sims said.

In accordance with the plea agreement with the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office, Sims is expected to be sentenced to 7 years in state prison with the stipulation he serve 85 percent of that sentence under the terms of the No Early Release Act. Sentencing is scheduled for July 16.

State Superior Court Richard W. English lowered Sims’ bail from $3 million with no option to post 10 percent to $1.5 million with no 10 percent option, after Konzelmann requested the reduction.

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