Brice McMillan Pleads Guilty To 2nd Degree Murder

A man accused of tying his child to a tree has pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in Edgecombe County.

The plea happened during a pre-trial hearing this morning. Brice McMillan entered the Alford plea in exchange for testimony in his wife's trial.

McMillan was arrested last year on charges that he and his wife, Sandra McMillan, killed his 13-year-old son. An autopsy showed Tyler McMillan died of dehydration and heat stroke.

The definition of Alford plea: "a pleading of guilty in a plea bargain in which the defendant maintains his or her innocence."

Sandra McMillan has been free on bond since March. Her trial is scheduled for next month and court officials say Brice McMillan won't be sentenced until after her trial.


The man lawmen say killed his son by tying him to a tree for being disobedient is due in court Monday.

42-year-old Brice McMillan is scheduled to appear in Edgecombe County Superior Court Monday morning. McMillan's son, Tyler, died at the age of 13 in June 2008. Lawmen say Tyler's stepmother, Sandra McMillan, found the teen unresponsive the afternoon after he was tied to the tree overnight.

Sandra McMillan was released on bond in March. She is also charged with murder and is due in court again July 6.

The autopsy report showed Tyler died of dehydration and heat stroke after being tied to the tree for 18 hours. His body temperature was 105.6 degrees when he was taken to the hospital. Tests showed a pattern of dehydration.

The autopsy also found Tyler had insect bites on his arms and legs, bruises on his buttocks and legs that may have been caused by a rod-like instrument and marks on his wrists and ankles consistent with plastic ties.


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  • by Kevin Location: Kinston on Jun 17, 2009 at 10:58 AM
    Why does this go to trial? Why is there a plea bargain on the table? Who in their right mind could possibly defend these two monsters? Punishment would be def. tied to a tree but hanging from that tree. We have to protect the children and if that means taking them from their abusive parents or guardians then so be it. RIP Tyler!
  • by JS Location: Wilmington on Jun 17, 2009 at 07:48 AM
    This is how Brice could plead this case down and get away with it. It's a hot topic for about 1 day and then - nothing! Everyone goes back to life as usual - except the family. We have to live with this forever. Please keep this story alive in the press. Don't let the DA or ADA plead this down so far for both of them that they'll be out of jail shortly and trying to retain custody of their children. They have proved they are not fit to raise children. Brice taking this plea bargain has again proved he places no value on Tyler's life - he's killed him all over again by getting a "bargain deal" instead of paying the full price for Tyler's death. He doesn't even ADMIT he did anything wrong! Are you kidding? It makes me physically ILL! Please don't let them get away with this and regain custody of the other 2 children. The children deserve better than that. Please keep this story alive in the press so the DA and ADA know SOMEONE CARES! Justice for Tyler McMillan!
  • by Zoban1 Location: Ar on Jun 16, 2009 at 06:56 PM
    This is truly a sad story. I can't imagine what could go through a person's mind to harm a child especially their own! This sickens me I hope they are put into general population with the criminals who actually care for children!
  • by Disgusted Location: NC on Jun 15, 2009 at 07:52 PM
    Anonymous in Greenville: HARSH punishment U say?? I'd hate to see what U consider ABUSE!!! Those two deserve to befound guilty of premeditated murder!! They left him there for many, many hours! I say tie them to two trees face to face on fire ant hills on the hottest day in August and forget about them!!!
  • by Norma Location: New Jersey on Jun 15, 2009 at 06:52 PM
    Why did Brice and Sandra not at least give Tyler fresh iced water to drink,so he might have a chance to live?
  • by Wolfgang Location: Chocowinity,NC on Jun 15, 2009 at 06:11 PM
    Thank you for your reply Keltiesmom. I was just interested about little Tylers family,and his real Mother. I have a good feeling Tyler, and his real Mother are holding hands with the Lord. Let us pray for little Tyler. Thank you Keltiesmom
  • by Thomas Location: Chocowinity,NC on Jun 15, 2009 at 05:27 PM
    Lets us not forget how little Tyler died. Tied to a tree,thinking what are you doing to me. I am your son? He probably starts to cry in fear. Then left a by himself. Bugs attack him as he tries to fight them off. He gets real thirsty sweat puring out of his body. He is so scared. Thinking someone please help me. As his water dains out of him. He overheats passes out and dies. What fear went through his mind?This took hours of pure torture before he died. Make no mistake he died a horrable death. How could anybody do this to there own child? These two are evi,evil,evil. The word should go out .You do this to a child.You will pay,and pay you will
  • by keltiesmom Location: Wilmington on Jun 15, 2009 at 05:26 PM
    Wolfgang - Tyler's real Mom died of breast cancer in September 2004. She was a wonderful person and an excellent mother. I don't think Brice ever got over her death, and maybe that's part of the problem. Sandy is an INSANELY jealous woman and had to eliminate everything that was part of Brice's past. And I guess that included the boys. How Brice got so weak minded as to go along with everything is anyone's guess. I have certainly lost all respect for him as a person. I don't know how he can face himself every day knowing what he and Sandy did to those boys - both of them, not just Tyler, were abused. Tyler and his brother deserve justice - and that means long jail terms for both Sandy AND Brice. They sentenced Tyler to death and carried out the sentence. His sentence cannot be commuted. They have not shown remorse. They do not deserve any mercy.
  • by Samantha R Benavides Location: Washington on Jun 15, 2009 at 04:07 PM
    If that "father" were a part of my family, even my own son, I would still hope he gets the maximum! I hope he sees his sons' face every night when he goes to sleep and every waking minute of every day! Can't even begin to say what I hope she gets!
  • by Bob Location: Belhaven on Jun 15, 2009 at 02:53 PM
    It doesn't matter whether he was abused, she was abused only that this poor boy was abused to death! Take a minute and think about how he must have suffered during that period of being tied to a tree. No excuse is acceptable for doing this to a child!!! No punishment is too great for these TWO and to anyone who knew this was going on and did nothing, LIVE WITH WHAT YOU DID NOT DO! Hey being spanked is acceptable if done correctly, taking away priviledges is ok, many forms of discipline are ok-but what these monsters did is NOT acceptable!!! May GOD forgive them because as a mere mortal human being I could not!!!
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