Derek Maner in court; Ericka Bradley's family says justice is served

By: Lynnsey Gardner Email
By: Lynnsey Gardner Email

News 12 First at Five, April 4, 2008

ALLENDALE, S.C. -- Today, 20-year-old Derek Maner is answering to murder charges after investigators say Ericka Bradley is dead and Maner, her boyfriend, killed her.

Today Ericka's family finally got their day in court as well.

Derek Maner woke up in jail for the first time Friday morning, and Ericka's family says they hope he stays there for life.

Gardner, "Do you have anything to say to Ericka's family?"
"Where is ericka's body?" "Do you know where she is?" Derek Maner gives no answers to questions investigators believe only he can answer.

"Hard seeing him walk up in that courtroom, like he had no remorse, like he hadn't did anything." says Jackie Bradley, Ericka's mother.

"I wish they could grill him, shine the hard lights on him and mmmmmmmm.... make him talk-tell us where she is you know, tell us where she is!" adds Ericka's grandmother Modestine Williams.

Strapped, shackled and cuffed, the man Ericka Bradley once loved, stands before a judge and her family and faces his charges.

"You are being charged with capital murder, do you understand your charges?" asked the Judge to Maner.


Ericka's family says they also understand this means--despite their efforts -- she probably isn't coming home alive. "I mean we crawled on the ground, we digged with shovels, i even dug with my hands." explains her aunt, Bonnie Myers.

Searches that for 17 months, turned up nothing. Searches maner and his family never participated in and today, he stood alone--with no one on his side not even his Mom and Dad.

"For them not to show up, for me, it's a sign of guilt." adds Myers.

The couple's son, named Ty Derrius-- may grow up without both of his parents. He is being raised by Maner's family, but Ericka's family says they will now fight for custody.

"It was just like looking the devil in the face." says Ericka's other grandmother Annie Ruth Wright who confronted Maner in court and surprisingly to her, he looked back.

"He just don't have a heart, he just don't have a heart." adds Jackie Bradley.

But Ericka's family says she did have a heart, and it belonged to Derek Maner.

"She loved him very much, she did anything in the world for him." says Bradley.

Now the only other thing in the world Ericka's family wants is to bring her home. "Ericka if you are gone, darling i love you and may god forever bless you and we are going to take care of your child." cries Phillips.

Investigators say there is a possiblity of other arrests in this case, but they won't add who.

Derek Maner will have a bond hearing in the next few weeks.

In the meantime he was taken to another county jail because Ericka's uncle works at the Allendale County jail.

Investigators say they still don't know where Ericka's body is. They hope so for the family's sake that Derek will tell investigators where to find her remains, but the say they don't need it to get a conviction in their minds--they say the evidence speaks for itself.

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  • by .... Location: Texas on Jun 17, 2009 at 10:44 PM
    I Just Pray to GOD that the truth comes out...How can u charge someone with murder and have no body...we all kno the media hypes thing a lot! i believe after all this time and a sentence if he did anything he would have said something by now! GOD bless both families and wahts done in the dark shall always come to light!
  • by walter Location: roswell new mexico on Apr 6, 2009 at 02:00 AM
    i dont know what to say about derek and that whole situation. but seeing as how i went to school with him for the longest time, i did notice that he had an anger problem early on in high school. for me i dont see as how he could physically had killed her, but i do see intention surrounding his aura. its funny, thinking how along with von moore, coderia grant, andre elmore, derek was one of my best friends. id only wish things could have been different.
  • by ERICA Location: Augusta,Georgia on Jun 5, 2008 at 03:33 PM
    I am pray everyday for her family and the baby that this devil little boy get what he deserve from GOD because she could not have did anything that bad to be killed by a boy that so called to be her baby daddy and a devil from hell that she once Loved.May GOD BLESS THIS FAMILY AND THE BABY FOREVER!May his butt burn in HELL>
  • by unknown Location: allendale on May 21, 2008 at 07:32 AM
    wow, what can i say Allendale has finally hit the spot light. derek does not deserve to walk around on this Earth again. Not only has he disgraced the community, but his family who has a great reputation....
  • by Opinionated on Apr 10, 2008 at 09:48 AM
    This is such an unfortunate incident. I'm glad the family is finally getting some sort of "closure" to this ordeal. If he had any sense of decency, he would reveal the location of the body. He owes them at least that much. I think the family of Maner are also very shady. The fact that they wouldn't even help in searches for the past 17 months leads me to believe they knew something about her disappearance. Throughout 17 months they couldn't participate in at least 1 search? They should be investigated also.
  • by annette Location: augusta, ga. on Apr 7, 2008 at 05:58 PM
    I would just like to let the family know i am sorry for there lost. But always remember a part of her will always be here with her son. GOD BLESS
  • by aishah washington Location: allendale on Apr 7, 2008 at 10:10 AM
    I think that's wrong for what he did to Erica. I think he should get life in prison.
  • by C.F. Location: Allensdale on Apr 7, 2008 at 10:10 AM
    i am so sorry to hear that and i really hope that Derek stays in jail until he tells where Erica is at. he is so wrong for killing such an innocent, smart, sweet, and beautiful goal.i really hope that Erica is alive. I
  • by Kecha Williams Location: Williston, South Carolina on Apr 7, 2008 at 09:01 AM
    My heart goes out to her family.I wish you the best especially with the baby.Just keep praying and remember God is NOT sleep.Derek and anyone involved with the disappearance of Erika will for be bought to justice!The child is going to be the one who suffers the most, because he is without both parents.I know the family will do what their best.I am terribly sorry for your lost and wish that things were different for you but always remember He takes the BEST.Derek is going to get what he deserves taking the mother of his son away from him.I hope and pray somehow that he doesn't get away with this.Who put him in charge to say it was time for Erika to leave this earth.He doesn't deserve the chair he needs to NEVER be able to step foot out of jail and live with what he has done for the rest of his life!!!I know he doesn't sleep well at night and it serves him right!!!!What he did was selfish, irresponsible and just plain DUMB!!!!!
  • by Nikki White Location: Augusta on Apr 6, 2008 at 02:41 PM
    I want to let the family know that my heart goes out to them on the lost of Erica.I really think thats wrong for what he did to her not just only her,But the baby to the family is right,He dont have a heart Any one with a heart wouldnt did such thing,But I can go on and on But I`ll end by saying I wish the family luck on him saying where he put her body so thing can get better for them,still sad but happy to know she anit just out there somewhere laying God bless you people.
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