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Larry Demery, one of the men convicted of killing Michael Jordan’s father James R. Jordan Sr. was granted parole and will be released in 2023.

The Murder of James Jordan Sr

James Jordan Sr was killed on July 23, 1993. He was on his way home from a funeral when he stopped on the side of Highway 74 south of Lumberton to take a nap.

Larry Demery and Daniel Green approached Jordan Sr. while he was taking a nap, killed him, and then stole his car.

The two men drove the Lexus about 150 miles for two hours with the body, police said. They dumped the car on the side of the road just outside of Fayetteville, NC.

His body was found on August 3 in a swamp in McColl, South Carolina by a fisherman. His body was badly decomposed, and unrecognizable. Jordan Sr. was not identified until August 13 with the help of dental records provided by the family dentist. (His body had previously been cremated by the coroner due to lack of storage space, but his jaw and hands were preserved for identification).

After going through Jordan Sr.’s belongings, Green and Demery realized that Jordan Sr. was the father of Michael Jordan. They had taken other items from the car, including two NBA championship rings given to Jordan Sr. by his son MJ. Green and Demery made several calls from Jordan Sr.’s cell phone and as a result, they were caught and arrested.

The Trial

Larry Demery (Left), Daniel Green (right)

During the trial, Demery testified that the two of them were only supposed to tie him up and take the car. He mentioned that it was Green’s idea to shoot and kill Jordan Sr.

Larry Demery

Although Green did not testify at the trial, his attorney later argued that Demery was coached by the police to make false statements towards Green.

Green did however admit that he helped dump Jordan Sr.’s body but does not admit to shooting him. Jordan was fatally shot in his chest. Was the wrong person put in jail for the crime?

After testimonies were given, both Demery and Green were convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison. 

On July 23, 2018, Christine Mumma, executive director of the Center on Actual Innocence, said evidence showed Green did not commit the murder. 

On August 3, 2018, Superior Court Judge Winston Gilchrist ruled on several motions and set a December date for a hearing.

On December 5, 2018, Mumma asked Gilchrist to allow a closer look at evidence that could lead to a new trial, and Gilchrist said he would rule later.

Judge Gilchrist said on March 6, 2019, that he would not grant Green a hearing, and Mumma said she would appeal. All attempts have remained unsuccessful.


Video from a March 6, 2008 parole hearing, shows Larry Demery, one of the men convicted in the murder of Michael Jordan’s father.

Things may have been unsuccessful for Green but not for Demery. According to a parole commission letter that was released on August 18, 2020 Demery has been approved and granted for parole after spending nearly two decades in prison.

The letter states that he will be released on August 6, 2023. That date is contingent on him remaining in good standing as a prisoner.

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