Hearing held for man accused of murder

By Katherine Wartell

The preliminary hearing for a Junction City man accused of shooting and killing another man on New Year’s Day was held in Riley County District Court Wednesday.

Daniel Parker, 26, is accused of the first-degree murder of Frederick Beverly, 21, the victim in an apparent drive-by shooting outside of the former Assassin Street Rydaz clubhouse on the corner of Fair Lane and Delaware Street.

Beverly was a member of the motorcycle club and had been acting as security outside of the clubhouse during a New Year’s party when Parker allegedly shot him.

According to the court testimony of a Riley County detective who was present for the crime scene investigation and subsequent search of Parker’s Junction City apartment, a 5.56-millimeter shell casing, found at the crime scene, was connected to a rifle found at Parker’s apartment.

Det. Steve Gregoire testified that 5.56-millimeter ammunition was also found at Parker’s apartment.

He told the court that Kansas Bureau of Investigation lab results indicated the shell casing that was found at the clubhouse was fired from the rifle found at Parker’s apartment.

Beverly’s cause of death, as listed in his autopsy, was a penetrating gunshot wound to the head.

Police have said that the drive-by followed an altercation involving Parker with other Rydaz members at an Aggieville bar. In court Wednesday, four acquaintances and friends of Beverly and Parker testified as to the circumstances surrounding the fight and the shooting.

Three of the witnesses testified that a fight had occurred at the bar now known as Rusty’s, though formerly known as Last Chance Saloon, prior to approximately 1 a.m. on New Year’s Day between members of the Assassin Street Rydaz and Parker’s group of friends.

One of the witnesses, a friend of Beverly’s, said she saw a white man, though she did not indicate whether the man was Parker, yell to the gathered motorcycle club members, “(Expletive) you guys. (Expletive) the Assassins.”

She said the fight was more of a verbal altercation and that it was calmed by bouncers before tensions arose once more. She said a second confrontation was calmed and that most of the motorcycle club members left for the clubhouse a little after 1 a.m.

The witness, along with another woman who worked as the club’s photographer, testified that once at the clubhouse, Beverly manned the gate into the clubhouse. They said they heard loud noises and gunshots at approximately 4 a.m., but did not witness the shooting.

A man who partied with Parker at Last Chance Saloon told the court that he witnessed Parker leaving the bar with his wife at approximately 1 a.m. The next morning he said that he had two missed calls from Parker, one from about 3:30 a.m. and the other from about 4 a.m.

At the time of publication, Parker’s preliminary hearing was still under way. During the hearing, it will be determined whether Parker will be bound over for trial. Magistrate Judge Sheila Hochhauser is presiding over the case.

Parker is represented by Ron Evans, chief attorney for the Kansas Death Penalty Defense Unit, though the case is not a capital case. County Attorney Barry Wilkerson and Assistant County Attorney Barry Disney and represented the state.

Parker was a specialist in the United States Army. He has served two 1-year tours in Iraq.

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