Man pleads guilty, gets nearly 50 years for murder in Arlington drug deal robbery

A 22-year-old defendant will spend nearly 50 years in prison after he pleaded guilty to murder in the 2022 shooting death of a man in Arlington, according to the Tarrant County Criminal District Attorney’s Office.

Bryce Oliver, 22, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 49 years and six months in prison, according to the district attorney’s office.

On Nov. 21, 2022, Oliver and a teenage boy whose name has not been released shot and killed 21-year-old Juan Jaime Merino in the 3500 block of Brookhurst Lane, authorities have said.

Police said at the time that Merino was found dead in his vehicle parked on that road. He was shot in the head while meeting Oliver and teen, who went to buy marijuana from him. During the exchange, Merino was robbed and then shot.

Merino didn’t know Oliver or the teen, Arlington police said at the time. Oliver and the teen were arrested later that same day.

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Merino was found slumped over inside the car, the engine still running and the doors open. He was pronounced dead at the scene.