2 Defendants Request Counsel Changes

Two defendants in a five-defendant murder case requested counsel changes Dec. 20. Stephon Evans Alonzo Brown, and Tavist Alston are indicted for first-degree murder while armed, conspiracy to commit a crime of violence while armed, possession of a firearm during a crime of violence and assault with the intent to kill while armed charges for their alleged involvement in the death of 22-year-old Michael Taylor on the 1700 block of Benning Road, NE on Jan. 12. Naquel Henderson and Carlos Turner are also charged with first-degree murder in relation to the homicide. Alston, who already opted to keep his defense attorney Marnitta King, filed a motion, requesting  Judge Todd Edelman appoint another attorney and retain King as his Criminal Justice Act attorney. Brown told Judge Edelman that he planned on retaining his own attorney before February of 2020 but wanted Edelman to appoint an attorney to replace his current attorney, Russell Hairston. The prosecution told the judge that an indictment for Alston would be secured by deadline. Judge Edelman agreed to appoint new counsel for Alston and told Brown that if he had not retained new counsel by the next hearing, he would be more open to appointing new counsel. Henderson, 22, is scheduled for a felony status conference and a preliminary hearing on Jan. 24, 2020. Turner, 21, is scheduled for a felony status conference on Feb. 7, 2020. Evans, 19, and Brown, 22, are scheduled for a status hearing on Jan. 24, 2020. Alston, 26, is scheduled for a felony status conference on Jan. 24, 2020.