Jermaine Davis is one of three men charged with the young girl’s murder
RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — One of three men accused of killing 9-year-old Markiya Dickson at a Richmond public park last May faced a jury Tuesday.
The trial is expected to last two days at the John Marshall Courthouse in Richmond. A potential verdict isn’t expected until Wednesday.
Jermaine Davis, 21, is charged with murder, two counts of malicious wounding, and three counts of use of a firearm in commission of a felony.
In May of 2019, Markiya Dickson was struck by a stray bullet while at a Memorial Day cookout with her family in Carter Jones Park. Dickson later died at the hospital. An 11-year-old boy and a man survived after being hit in the crossfire.
The two other men accused, Jesus Turner and Quinshawn Betts, face the same charges.
This spring, a judge found 19-year-old Betts guilty and he was sentenced to 22 years in prison. Turner’s trial was also scheduled for this spring but was moved to January of 2021.
During opening arguments, the commonwealth argued that Davis played a role in Dickson’s death and deserves to be convicted. The defense argues that Davis was running away and just heard the shots behind him and was not part of the shooting.
“She was shot in her back, bullet went straight through her heart, and she didn’t have a chance,” the state said.
The prosecutor, Caitlin Kelly, said the shooting began at a basketball court after an argument between the three men charged and another man named Antonio Carter. Kelly said the shooting happened because of long-standing “beef” between a Carter and family member of one of the three men charged.
They said 23 bullets were fired.
As RPD investigated and located Carter, prosecutors said Carter gave police his gun. 23 shell casings were found on the scene, one from Carter and 22 from three other guns, according to the prosecutors.
The state said that four guns were fired, adding that one was Carter’s and the others belonged to the three charged men.
The commonwealth said Carter was shooting in the opposite direction — towards the men — so his bullet didn’t go into Markiya Dickson. The defense initially argued that Carter took his gun out first.
“He did not participate in the shooting, wasn’t involved in the beef,” Davis’ defense attorney, Leonard McCall said.
Witnesses who testified on Tuesday included a pediatric surgeon who tried to save Dickson’s life, an off duty officer, a responding officer and Antonio Carter himself. More people are expected to testify on Day 2 of the trial. The verdict is expected the same day, Wednesday.
The case against 21-year-old Jermaine Davis continues. A potential verdict could be reached today.
The first witness of the day was the young boy who was shot in the arm at the same time: Jacquez Evans Moses. He was 11 when the crime happened and is now 13. He testified for the commonwealth’s case on Wednesday.
“I thought it was fireworks,” he said, referring to the gunfire erupting that day. The young boy added that he saw just one person with a gun. He said smoke was “coming out of the gun.”
It’s unclear if he can directly pinpoint who shot him. He hadn’t realized he was shot until someone told him. “Somebody told me I was bleeding,” he told the jury.
The next witness to testify was the lead RPD detective on the case. His testimony focused on the investigatory process after the shooting happened. He said the main difficulty while investigating was that the park was so crowded, it was difficult to tell who exactly was there. He said many people fled the scene but he was able to talk to some witnesses. According to the detective, he is certain that Carter was not responsible for killing Markiya because statements from eyewitnesses “corroborated what Carter was saying,” the detective said.
The next witness was an investigator with RPD. He mainly testified to where the bullet casings were found and to the firearms that were recovered.
8News will be in the courtroom providing updates. Stay with us.