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Suspect pleads not guilty in slaying of South Forsyth grad
Seppenfield mug

DAWSONVILLE — The Dawson County man charged with murder in the shooting death of a father and youth coach who grew up in Forsyth County has entered a not guilty plea.

Herman James Seppenfield VII's attorney, Richard Stepp, on Monday filed a waiver of formal arraignment and a plea of not guilty on his client's behalf.

By waiving the formal arraignment, Seppenfield was not required to appear before the judge for the proceedings.

Tory Jude Miguez, Seppenfield's 25-year-old co-defendant from Dawsonville, was also set to be formally arraigned on Monday. His attorney has also filed a waiver and entered a not guilty plea for Miguez.

In addition, last month attorneys for Miguez filed a motion for immunity from the aggravated assault charges against him, citing Georgia law that states "a person who uses threats or force against another under circumstances in which he is justified ... shall be immune from prosecution."

According to court records, Miguez "contends that he was justified in using force against Alan Brandon Weaver" the night of Nov. 22 in southeastern Dawson County.

Weaver, a 37-year-old South Forsyth High School graduate, died from shots fired at close range by Seppenfield during a fight, according to authorities.

Seppenfield, 50, has been charged with felony murder, malice murder, aggravated assault and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony crime.

He has remained at the Dawson County Detention Center since his arrest on Dec. 6. His bond has been set at $250,000.

Miguez's charges include possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony crime against another person and two counts of aggravated assault.

He was released from custody Feb. 2 after posting a $35,000 bond.

The fight reportedly started when Weaver and another man arrived at a home on Whitney Place off Dawson Forest Road to confront the people living there.

Authorities said Weaver's son had been at a birthday party at the home several hours earlier that evening and had called home to say he wanted to leave.

According to Dawson County Sheriff's Capt. Tony Wooten, the child felt uncomfortable about something going on at the party.

The confrontation escalated and shots were fired, according to officials.

Weaver was hit twice, once in the chest and once in the side. He died on the scene, a short time after first responders arrived at the home.

According to the January indictment, Miguez used a handgun to strike and cause serious bodily injury to the man that arrived on scene with Weaver.

Weaver’s survivors included his wife, three young sons and numerous family members and friends throughout many communities.

According to his obituary, Weaver graduated from South in 1995. Forsyth County News records show he was a member of the newspaper’s 1994 All-County football team as a defensive end.

Weaver then went on to play football at Georgia Military College in Milledgeville and then Dakota Wesleyan University in Mitchell, S.D.