BR man convicted in ’03 slaying

A 38-year-old Baton Rouge man faces an automatic sentence of life in prison following his conviction in the 2003 shooting death of a man at the Elm Grove Garden Apartments.

An East Baton Rouge Parish jury deliberated for about 35 minutes Thursday night before finding Reginald Davis guilty of second-degree murder in the September 2003 killing of Walter Lee Scott, 35. The jury’s vote was 11-1.

Prosecutor Dana Cummings said state District Judge Lou Daniel will formally sentence Davis on March 26.

Davis was indicted twice in the case. An initial second-degree murder charge against him was dropped in 2005 because witnesses failed to show up for trial.

A grand jury reinstated the second-degree murder charge in December 2011.

District Attorney Hillar Moore III, who took office in January 2009, said Friday that based on information his office received from the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, a joint investigation by ATF, the Baton Rouge Police Department and the District Attorney’s Office was conducted and witnesses previously unavailable were located.

“He was a dangerous individual that we were able to get off the streets,” Moore said of Davis.

Davis was accused of shooting Scott on Sept. 22, 2003, at the Elm Grove Garden Apartments where Scott lived.

Prosecutors have said the incident began when Davis approached Scott’s wife and tried to strike up a conversation. When the woman refused to speak with Davis, he began screaming and cursing at her, prosecutors said.

Scott came to his wife’s defense and the two men began fighting, prosecutors said. The men went their separate ways at 10:30 p.m. after Scott knocked Davis to the ground, prosecutors said.

About 30 minutes later, Davis shot Scott from the balcony of an apartment while Scott stood in the courtyard of the complex, prosecutors said.