Pauls Valley, OK, Pauls Valley Democrat

Local News

March 2, 2013

More details come in grisly murder — Just a little bit more is known about a grisly shooting death near Elmore City last summer that resulted in one man's body being dismembered and disposed of in the bottom of a farm pond.

A few more of the details in the case against 31-year-old Justin Hammer came out during a preliminary hearing Thursday in a Garvin County District courtroom.

Hammer is facing a formal charge of first-degree murder with deliberate intent for killing Brandon Duran on the night of Aug. 7, 2012 at Hammer's rural residence northeast of Elmore City.

He then sawed the body into a number of parts and attempted to conceal them in a pond on his own property.

A handful of witnesses took the stand during this week's hearing offering testimony ranging from Hammer's admission of the deadly act and subsequent self-defense claim to the defendant asking a friend to help dispose of the body after it was cut into pieces.

In the end Hammer was bound over to face a jury trial at some point in the future. An arraignment is scheduled for April 26, which is when a trial date is expected to be set.

Among those testifying this week was Marvin Akers, who as an Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation agent got Hammer to confess to killing Duran and then attempting to conceal the body.

"Initially he said he didn't know why he was there," Akers said. "Eventually he said he had shot Brandon Duran in the face with a .410 shotgun."

Hammer's story to the agent was Duran came to his residence on a motorcycle and kicked in his door.

When Duran was 5 to 10 feet away Hammer said he shot Duran, who fell to the floor. Hammer admitted to then dragging the dead Duran into his bathroom, where he used a saw to dismember his body.

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