UPDATE: Family getting closure; deputies arrest suspect in Spencer club murder over year later
SPENCER, Okla. – Family members of a metro murder victim are getting some closure Wednesday.
It has been more than a year since 23-year-old Jean-Ciar Pierce was shot to death outside a Spencer night club.
The Oklahoma County Sheriff announced they arrested 21-year-old Deontae Thomas in connection with the murder.
The victim’s mother has fought tirelessly to keep this case in the spotlight.
She said she knew someone out there had information that could help in the investigation.
Sara Burdine, Pierce’s mother, said, “We knew this day was going to come, prayed for this day to come for sure.”
In August 2012, Sara Burdine’s son was shot and killed outside of a Spencer nightclub.
The club has since closed but signs are still posted that show what happened there.
Burdine said, “It’s been a long, a long, a little over a year, now so it’s been very difficult.”
Wednesday Sheriff John Whetsel brought good news, an arrest in the case.
“Gosh, emotions are everywhere,” Burdine said. “It’s the day we had hoped for. It’s the start of something that will hopefully lead to a conviction.”
Sheriff Whetsel said Thomas and a group of friends were celebrating that night because Thomas had just been released from prison.
The sheriff said the party started in Midwest City and then moved to Shaker’s.
“We began this investigation with very little information,” Sheriff Whetsel said. “It was complicated because several people were shooting at each other in and out of the nightclub.”
Investigators said as many as 200 people were at the club that night.
They had even released surveillance video showing a gunman and a shoot out, yet very few tips came.
Recently a witness decided to step forward.
Whetsel said, “This witness placed Thomas at the scene of the crime and detailed how he exchanged gunfire with the victim outside the club in the parking lot.”
While it’s a big development, the sheriff and the victim’s mom both said there is still more work to be done.
Whetsel said, “We can’t stand up here today and say we have this case wrapped up.”
Burdine said, “We have a long road ahead of us still.”
The sheriff is still asking for tips in the case.
If you have information you are asked to call (405) 713-1017.
Callers can remain anonymous.
The Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office released videos from the club the night of the shooting below.