Cameo Night Club shooting suspect pleads guilty

Cameo Night Club shooting suspect pleads guilty
Cornell Beckley in court earlier this year with his lawyer, Clyde Bennett II. (Photo: FOX19 NOW/file)

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) -The surviving suspect in the Cameo Night Club shooting pleaded guilty to the shooting that killed two men and wounded another 15 people.

Cornell Beckley, 28, appeared before Hamilton County Common Pleas Judge Steven Martin to enter his plea deal.

Cornell Beckley, 28, took a plea deal Tuesday morning and pleaded guilty to all charges.
Cornell Beckley, 28, took a plea deal Tuesday morning and pleaded guilty to all charges. (Source: FOX19 NOW)

He faces charges of murder, felonious assault, inducing panic and weapons offenses.

He also is accused of trying to bribe witnesses not to testify against him. Prosecutors additionally charged him with bribery, tampering with evidence and obstructing justice.

Beckley will serve 19 years in the state penitentiary as part of the deal and will also serve five to eight years afterward on probation and community control.

Judge Martin accepted the changes to the plea deal Tuesday morning around 10:15 a.m. however, the deal has not been formally accepted.

Formal sentencing for Bleckley will be Dec. 7.

The new accusations top off Beckley’s charges in the March 26, 2017 shootout at the East End nightclub.

Hundreds of patrons were inside when a gunfight broke out during a dispute among several people in two feuding groups from Madisonville and Price Hill, authorities have said.

Cameo Night Club (FOX19 NOW)
Cameo Night Club (FOX19 NOW)

Two men were fatally shot: O’Bryan Spikes, 27, and Deondre Davis, 29.

Davis and Beckley were charged with murder in Spikes' death.

Spikes died at the club; Davis died days later at University of Cincinnati Medical Center.

Police also have said they are searching for a third, unidentified suspect.

Investigators believe Beckley fired the first shots.

He stood on the club stage and fired least four shots from a .25 caliber revolver into the crowd, according to Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters.

Davis then fired a .40 caliber Glock at least eight times.

Beckley and Davis were not legally allowed to carry firearms, according to Deters.

Police recovered both guns along with a 9 mm weapon believed to belong to the unidentified third suspect.

The club was supposed to be checking patrons for weapons, but at least three different guns made it inside, Cincinnati police have said.

A gross negligence lawsuit filed last year by Spikes' family accuses club manager Julian Rodgers of created a secretly unsafe atmosphere for patrons by permitting some to bypass security protocols at the entrance and enter without being screened for weapons.

Rodgers extracted an additional cover charge from clubgoers to enter through an alternate side entrance where they were permitted in without weapons, according to the suit.

The suit also alleges the four off-duty Cincinnati police officers who were working security details outside the club and the city also were negligent, accusing the officers of "turning a blind eye" to the side entrance and patrons paying more to get in with weapons.

Cameo Night Cub has a history of gun violence including a shooting inside the club on New Years Day 2015 and a shooting in the parking lot in September of the same year.

Police also were called to the club upwards of 100 times since the beginning of 2016, city documents show.

Rodgers turned his liquor permit over to authorities the day after the shooting.

The club permanently shut down March 31.

It was not clear at the time of the shooting why the liquor license was permitted to remain active at the club, given the high number of calls for service and history of violence

The landlord, The Kellogg Group LLC, failed to terminate its lease with JRODG and/or Cameo despite knowing of repetitive and criminal activity occurring on the premises, or take any reasonable measures to prevent it, the suit alleges.

After the shooting, Rodgers released a statement rejecting claims that people paid to get into the club without being checked.

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