CATAWBA COUNTY, N.C. -- Maurice Centel Mayfield, 26, of Hickory, was given an active prison term of 17-21 years after pleading guilty to second-degree murder on Monday.
Mayfield pleaded guilty to the Nov. 20, 2012, death of 35-year-old Billy Chad Dellinger.
Witnesses said that Dellinger and Mayfield started fighting at Dellinger's home in Hickory around 3:30 a.m., Dellinger told Mayfield to leave. Mayfield became angry, pulled out a small handgun and shot Dellinger once in the chest.
Dellinger was transported to Frye Regional Medical Center where he was pronounced dead at approximately 11:45 a.m. Just before 5 p.m. that same day, Mayfield turned himself in at the Hickory Police Department.
A search of Mayfield’s residence turned up a .380-caliber handgun that had been hidden on top of a kitchen cabinet. It matched the description given by witnesses of the gun Mayfield used to shoot Dellinger. The bullet taken from Dellinger also was a .380-caliber. Analysis by the State Crime Lab showed that the bullet taken from Dellinger and the cartridge recovered at his residence were fired from the handgun recovered at Mayfield’s residence.