• Tue. May 21st, 2024

Judge Rules Against Severance in Murder Case Citing ‘Judicial Economy’

BySamantha Johnson

Apr 10, 2024
Judge Rules Against Severance in Murder Case Citing ‘Judicial Economy’

On April 9, DC Superior Court Judge Maribeth Raffinan made a decision regarding a homicide case involving two defendants, Rafeal Stevens and Jermall Johnson. The pair are facing charges related to the shooting death of 50-year-old Aniekobo Umoh on December 29, 2022, in Washington D.C. The charges include premeditated first-degree murder while armed, attempted robbery – felony murder, possession of a firearm during a crime of violence, and unlawful possession of a firearm, among others.

During the court proceedings, Johnson’s attorney, Stephen LoGerfo, filed a motion to separate the case from Stevens’ in order to present exculpatory evidence related to the felony murder charge. Both defense attorneys, LoGerfo and Jason Tulley, discussed potential testimony that could impact Johnson’s state of mind regarding the charges. The court determined that the evidence provided by the attorneys was sufficient to show Johnson’s mindset during the alleged robbery.

However, the judge did not find Stevens’ testimony regarding Johnson’s state of mind for the first-degree murder charge as exculpatory. Judge Raffinan denied the motion to separate the cases, citing concerns about the impact on judicial economy if separate trials were held.

Following the ruling, the prosecution indicated their intention to drop the felony murder addendum from the charges to allow both defendants to be tried together for first-degree murder. The trial is scheduled to proceed as planned in November, with the next status hearing set for July 12. Your support helps us continue our work in providing insight into criminal cases like this one. Thank you for reading D.C. Witness.

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By Samantha Johnson

As a content writer at newszkz.com, I delve into the realms of storytelling, blending words to paint vivid narratives that captivate and inform our readers. With a keen eye for detail and a passion for research, I craft compelling articles that resonate with our audience. My love for words drives me to explore diverse topics, ensuring that each piece I create not only educates but also entertains. Join me on this journey as we navigate the ever-evolving landscapes of news and knowledge together.

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