Prosecutors in the murder trial against Davon Holmes say that it’s not a case of “who done it. It’s a case of he did it.” But James Beane, Holmes’ defense attorney, argued that the government’s key witnesses had lied, and that the government’s theory is a “case of maybes and what ifs.”
Holmes is charged with the stabbing death of 24-year-old Marcellus Bailey. After closing arguments Tuesday, jurors in the case began weighing the evidence presented in four days of testimony.
Bailey was stabbed near the corner of 8th Street and Jefferson Street Northwest on August 3, 2011. He was discovered by police around 2:45 a.m., injured and bleeding profusely from his neck; he later died at Washington Hospital Center.
A government witness, whose testimony was previously recorded and played during trial, said of Bailey’s death, “[Holmes] sliced him.”
“I don’t know why,” he added.
The witness said he saw Holmes and Bailey on the morning of the murder “with a lot of other people” on the corner of 8th and Jefferson. A conversation between the two led to a shoving match, he said. Then Holmes sliced Bailey’s neck.
After Bailey was cut, he paced up and down the sidewalk, then walked toward his car while bleeding profusely. The witness fled, he testified.
“I didn’t want anything to do with what happened that night,” he said. “There was a lot of blood. A lot.”
In addition to the witness’s testimony, prosecutors say Sprint cellular phone records place Holmes near the crime scene at the time of the murder.
Beane asked jurors to not let their verdict rest on this evidence. The accounts of government witnesses in the case were unreliable, Beane said.
And as for the phone records?
“That same area encompasses his mother’s house and his sister’s house,” Beane said. “Does this place him in the area of 8th Street and Jefferson Street? Yes. Does it put him precisely on that exact corner? No.”
Jury deliberations will resume Wednesday morning.