Taylor Murder Suspect Changes Mind Again, Stays Guilty

Defendant was supposed to change plea from guilty to not guilty in Miami court

By Brian Hamacher and Todd Wright
|  Friday, Aug 7, 2009  |  Updated 3:14 PM EDT
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One of the men accused in the murder of Sean Taylor is expected to be in a Miami courtroom today to withdraw his guilty plea.

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One of the men alleged to be involved in the murder of NFL star Sean Taylor was expected to withdraw his guilty plea in a Miami courtroom today, but a funny thing happened on the way to the judge.

His mama stepped in.

Now, Venjah Hunte has decided he will stick with his guilty plea and accept partial responsibility for the tragic death of Taylor, who was killed in a 2007 home invasion robbery that went horribly wrong.

Hunte, 21, had originally made a deal with prosecutors last year to agree to testify against the other four co-defendants in the case in exchange for a 29-year sentence. But Hunte ditched his previous lawyer and filed a motion in June to rescind his guilty plea in the murder of the 24-year-old Washington Redskins safety and former University of Miami standout.

But after meeting privately with his mother and attorney Friday, Hunte told a judge he's ending his effort to withdraw the plea.

Taylor was shot during an attempted robbery in his Miami home in November 2007. Police say Hunte drove the robbery team to the scene.

The other four men -- Charles Wardlow, 19, Jason Scott Mitchell, 21, Timmy Lee Brown, 17, and Eric Rivera, 19 -- have all pleaded not guilty.

The trial is set to begin on Jan. 18.

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