DNA evidence argued during opening statements of murder trial

Local News

ERIE, Pa. — Opening statements were presented on Tuesday at the murder trial of Darion Eady who is accused of killing a 16-year-old boy at an Erie house party in 2015.

A jury of seven women and five men listened as the District Attorney’s office and the defense presented their cases in front of an overflowing courtroom at the Erie County Courthouse.

The DA’s office described the scene at 230 W. 29th St., during the night of July 24, 2015, where 16-year-old Elijah Jackson was killed. The prosecution said evidenced will be presented linking Eady to the case as the man who pulled the trigger.

Evidence includes testimony from Erie police officers who were at the scene along with shell casings that were found near the home and from Jackson. The prosecution said Eady’s DNA was found on a .22 caliber handgun that was discovered near the shooting scene. They believe the gun found was the one used to kill Jackson.

The defense said that DNA evidence is inconclusive and that there were other fingerprints and DNA discovered by the Pennsylvania State Police crime lab on the weapon.

The defense said there is no evidence at all that Eady fired a shot, let alone a motive.

The defense did not deny that Eady was at the party that night.

Eady, 22, who is charged with homicide, is accused of killing Jackson while four other men are charged in the death of Shakur Franklin, 16, who shot and killed at the same party.

Demond Mitchell, Stephen Russell, Jahaun Jones and Keshawn McLaurin are charged with the death of Franklin. Last October, a judge granted a motion filed by Eady’s attorney to have a separate trial from the other four suspects.

The trail for the four men is scheduled for April 24. The four suspects will face trial together. 

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