Raleigh County man pleads not guilty in deadly drug transaction case

BECKLEY, WV (WOAY) – A Raleigh County man entered a “not guilty” plea on Friday to first degree murder, felony conspiracy and drug delivery resulting in death.

Markel Stokes was accused of these crimes as he allegedly sold drugs to Derrick Counts in April that ultimately led to Counts’ death.

Stokes was indicted on these charges at the end of September and appeared in court via video conference on Friday where he plead not guilty to the indictment. 

“Anytime that law enforcement can prove that a particular drug dealer provided the drugs that caused the death of the victim in a close proximity of time, for first degree felony murder the language is that a person is guiltily of first degree murder of another person in the course of the delivery of a controlled substance,” Raleigh County Prosecuting Attorney Kristen Keller said. 

His pre-trail date is set for November 20 at 11 a.m. and the trial is set for November 15. 

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Anna Saunders
Anna Saunders is a weekend reporter for WOAY. With a diploma from Princeton Senior High School and a mother from Fayette County, she is no stranger to the area. She received a degree in Media Arts and Design from James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia and wanted to return home to start her career as a reporter.