Court upholds Dayton man’s conviction for fatal shooting outside Middletown bar

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

Victim shot to death in parking lot near 513 Lounge.

The conviction of a Dayton man serving a life sentence for the fatal shooting of a man outside a Middletown bar in 2020 has been upheld by the 12th District Court of Appeals.

In December 2022, a Butler County Common Pleas jury found Marquan Cook guilty of shooting Brandon Moneyham Sr. to death during the early morning hours of Oct. 11, 2020 in a parking lot adjacent to the 513 Lounge on Verity Parkway.

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Cook, 30, was convicted of murder with a gun specification, felonious assault and having weapons under disability on Dec. 15 following a three-day trial. Three weeks later, Judge Jennifer McElfresh sentenced Cook to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 22 years.

At trial, Cook testified in his own defense, denying he was the shooter. His attorney said the conviction will be appealed.

On Monday, in a unanimous decision, the appellate court affirmed Cook’s sentence and conviction stating the verdict was supported sufficient evidence presented at trial including testimony from an eyewitness stating Cook shot a gun at the victim multiple times at Moneyham, striking him in the chest and causing his death.

In addition, the prosecution presented data from a GPS ankle monitor Cook was wearing when the crime was committed.

After the shooting, Cook fled to Dayton and eventually to Florida. Cook cut off the GPS device. It was never found.

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Cook was released from prison in November 2019 after serving 2.5 years for attempted felonious assault. He was on post-release control after getting out of prison, according to the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation & Correction.

At 12:49 a.m. Oct. 11, 2020, Middletown police received a call about a person found behind a business at 601 N. Verity Parkway. An initial investigation revealed Moneyham had been at the 513 Lounge next door. A group of people were leaving the bar when shots were fired, and at least one person was hit, according to police.

According to the Middletown police report, the first officers at the scene found Moneyham with several gunshot wounds.

A female witness recounted her evening out with Cook that eventually led to the 513 Lounge.

Sometime shortly after midnight, the witness went outside to put her purse in the car and saw Moneyham and Cook in the parking lot.

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