Plea Accepted in 2014 Murders of Mother and Son in Jeff Davis County
State v. Robert Benjamin Brown

16 May 2022

District Attorney Keith Higgins announces that Robert Benjamin Brown, 37, of Jacksonville, FL, accepted a plea agreement in the 2014 deaths of two Jeff Davis County residents.


The charges stem from the May 15, 2014 deaths of Javonnie Mondrea Chambers, 35, and his mother, Mary Lee Chambers, 64, who were shot to death at their home in Hazlehurst, GA. Eyewitness testimony at the time revealed that two individuals shot the victims, and another individual drove the vehicle, a silver Dodge Charger, from which they fled the scene. Also present in the home at the time of the shooting was Mary Lee Chambers’ granddaughter and two minor children, ages 2 and 4.


The case was investigated by both the Hazlehurst Police Department and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI). The investigation revealed that Robert Benjamin Brown, then 30, and co-defendant Brandon Dante Hardaman, then 26, both of Jacksonville, FL, travelled to Jeff Davis County on May 15, 2014 in a silver Dodge Charger just prior to the murders. Brown had text messages and phone records that implicated him in the crime. Evidence and interviews showed that a third co-defendant, Gerald Wright, drove his two co-defendants from the scene following the shootings, wherein Mondrea Chambers was shot with a 9mm semi-automatic pistol and his mother, Mary Lee, was killed by a .308 rifle round after the home was sprayed with .308 rounds by one of the co-defendants.


Pursuant to a plea agreement, Brown pled guilty to two counts of Voluntary Manslaughter, a lesser-included offense of the original charge of Felony Murder. Following entry of the guilty plea, on May 13, 2022, Brown was sentenced by Superior Court Judge Roger B. Lane to 40 years, 20 years to serve in prison, with the remainder on probation. Brown, who was sentenced as a recidivist, will have to serve the full term of 20 years in prison. Following a jury trial in January 2022, co-defendant Gerald Wright was sentenced to Life without Parole for his part in the case. The case against Hardaman, a third co-defendant in the case, was placed on the dead docket.


Members of the media with further questions may contact the Brunswick Judicial Circuit District Attorney’s Office at 912-554-7200.


Open Records Act Request: Pursuant to O.C.G.A. 50-18-71(b)(2), the Open Records Officer for the Brunswick Judicial Circuit District Attorney’s Office is Cathy Browning. Written requests should be submitted to her via email at cbrowning@pacga.org or by mail to the Brunswick Judicial Circuit District Attorney’s Office, Attention: Cathy Browning, 210 E. 4th St., Woodbine, GA 31569.
Media Policy: The Brunswick Judicial Circuit District Attorney aims to scrupulously follow the Georgia Rules of Professional Conduct. The office is not ethically allowed to answer many questions posed by reporters, whatever the journalistic merit. The office cannot, for example, discuss an accused party’s criminal history or speculate about the impact of a particular piece of evidence. These rules are in place to ensure a defendant’s rights to a fair trial and the presumption of innocence until proven guilty.