As Jury Convicts 1 Defendant, Trial Begins for Another in 2019 Double Homicide

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On Aug. 16, Kiray Walker was found guilty of two counts of second-degree murder, conspiracy to commit murder, conspiracy to commit carjacking, armed robbery and assault with a deadly weapon. On the same day, his co-defendant Malik Brooks began trial for the homicide of two victims before Baltimore City Circuit Court Judge Videtta Brown.

Walker, 21, Brooks, 22, and Devon Bynum, 19, are accused of shooting and killing Courtney Richardson and Aryanna James on the 1900 block of McHenry Street as part of a crime spree that included robbing several people at gunpoint and stealing two cars between 1 a.m. and 6 a.m. on Nov. 14, 2019.

The trial for Brooks, who is charged with two counts of first-degree murder, two counts of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, and two counts of use of a firearm during a violent crime, began after Walker’s trial went to deliberations on Aug. 15. Bynum’s trial is slated to follow Brooks.

During opening statements, the prosecutor gave an overview of the incident and emphasized that the jury will be presented with circumstantial evidence. He also argued the defendant’s actions contributed to this incident as a whole. 

Jerome Bivens, who is representing Brooks, opened his statements indicating the system of the constitution. He read what the constitution states and further explained that everyone in this court has a job. to uphold it in this country. We do not simply convict people without a fair trial. He also argued that the law states the defendant is innocent until proven guilty. 

The prosecutor called several officers who responded to the scene on the night of the incident. These officers checked on the victim’s conditions, collected their belongings for evidence control, recovered video footage from residences and businesses in the area, and questioned people who were at the crime scene.

The prosecutor also called a sergeant who was a homicide detective back in 2019 when the incident happened. He testified his squad was assigned to this investigation and his role was to search the crime scene, interview civilians, and go door-to-door to find any information. 

During cross-exam, Bivens questioned if anyone else obtained the footage and if there was a city watch camera recovered. The detective said no to both questions.

The prosecutor called a detective who performed a daylight canvas to investigate the area when the sun was up. He testified his role was to assist with the homicide and work as a team to investigate this case. He also said he observed a casing from the north side of the area. 

During cross-exam, Bivens questioned if he looked into any video footage camera. He said he did not and he only discovered the casing during the canvas. He also questioned if the casing was discovered when the sun came up. The detective said the casing was discovered during daylight.

The prosecutor called the crime scene technician who was requested to pull fingerprints from the cartridge case. She said when she arrived, the primary officer said the casing was under a vehicle but was removed now. She said that she could not recover any fingerprints from the case. She also said that she responded to the crime scene, collected the evidence, took photos, and wrote a report. 

During cross-exam, Bivens questioned if the cartridge casing was under the car. The technician said she was told the casing was under the car, but when she arrived it was already moved. 

Lastly, the prosecutor called a retired crime lab technician who said she collected evidence, went to the crime scene, took photos, and wrote a report. However, she said she did not recall the incident. 

Brooks’ trial is scheduled to continue on Aug. 17 with more testimony by officers with the Baltimore Police Department. 

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