Northshire Drive Murder Defendant Faces March Retrial

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On Jan. 3, Baltimore City Circuit Court Judge Melissa K. Copeland scheduled the retrial of a 22-year-old murder defendant.

Draquan Smith is charged with two counts each of first-degree murder and firearm use in a felony violent crime in connection to the death of 20-year-old Joshua Camara on March 27, 2022. 

Smith’s trial before Judge Althea M. Handy ended in a mistrial on Dec. 20, 2023, due to a hung jury. 

The prosecutor extended a plea offer of life, suspending all but 60 years, with five years of probation for first-degree murder. Defense attorney Latoya Francis-Williams rejected the offer on her client’s behalf. 

Though the prosecutor initially said he would only be available to try the case in May, Francis-Williams argued that a date that far out would violate her client’s sixth amendment right to a speedy trial. 

After conferring off the record, counsel returned with potential dates before May. 

Judge Copeland scheduled a motions hearing for the prosecution’s motions to hear remote testimony and previously recorded testimony on March 15 before Judge Philip S. Jackson

Smith’s four-day trial is slated to begin later that month on March 25 before Judge Gregory Sampson

In the opening statement of his previous trial, the prosecution claimed Smith was part of a group of men who assaulted and eventually killed Camara on the 2600 block of Northshire Drive. 

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