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Deliberations resume Monday in Family Dollar slayings

Oralandar Brand-Williams
The Detroit News

Detroit — A jury will resume deliberations Monday on the fate of a 35-year-old former Family Dollar employee charged with murdering two other workers for the retail chain.

Just before 1 p.m. Friday, jurors received the case of Lavere Bryant, who is accused of last year’s slayings. They deliberated for about an hour and a half before leaving for the weekend Friday. They return Monday at 9 a.m. to to continue deliberations.

Bryant of Dearborn insisted Thursday he didn’t commit the crime and volunteered to take a lie detector test in front of jurors. Wayne County Circuit Court Judge Qiana Lillard rejected his request.

Bryant is accused of killing Joseph Orlando of Dearborn and Brenna Machus of Southgate, both 20, in July 2013. Both died of gunshots to the head.

Orlando’s body was found in the bathroom of the Family Dollar store on Newman Street in Dearborn. Machus’ body was found a few days later in a wooded area near the Southfield Freeway and Michigan Avenue.

Bryant, a former employee of the Family Dollar store in Inkster, also is charged with armed robbery.

Families have packed the courtroom for the trial, which began last week.

bwilliams@detroitnews.com

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