Close Friend ‘Not Sure’ if Defendant was With Him the Day of Homicide 

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During a Nov. 21 jury trial, a detective recounted his initial investigation and a forensic pathologist confirmed the victim was killed by a bullet to the head in a 2017 homicide case.

On Aug. 10, 2017, Robert Moses, 23 and James Mayfield, 22 approached the intersection of Montana and Saratoga Avenues, NE while armed with .40 and .45 caliber handguns. Collectively, the defendants fired over ten rounds at people standing on Saratoga Avenue. One of these bullets struck 17-year-old Jamahri Sydnor in the head as she was driving, killing her. Three other bystanders were struck by the bullets.  

Moses was arrested on Oct. 26, 2017.  He is charged with 13 counts, including first-degree murder while armed, assault with the intent to kill while armed, and aggravated assault while armed. 

Mayfield was arrested on Dec. 27, 2017. He is charged with 25 counts, including first-degree murder, assault with the intent to kill while armed, possession of a firearm during a crime of violence, threat to kidnap or injure a person, robbery while armed, assault with a dangerous weapon, possession of an unregistered firearm, carrying a pistol without a license, and attempt to commit robbery while armed. 

Phillip McDaniel, 26, an accomplice who was arrested and charged in 2017 for his involvement in Sydnor’s murder, signed a plea deal to lessen his sentence to second-degree murder. This deal included his agreement to testify against Moses and Mayfield. 

On Monday, a close childhood friend of Moses’ who also knew McDaniel from Langdon Park continued his testimony. The witness recalled hanging out with Moses during the afternoon of Oct. 26, 2017, before Moses was arrested that evening. 

Prosecutors read aloud a segment from the witness’ Grand Jury testimony, in which he stated that “he wasn’t sure” if Moses was with him, or if he saw him at all, on Aug. 10, 2017, adding that he typically saw McDaniel “every blue moon.” When asked to clarify this statement, the witness explained that he meant “every other day.”

The witness confirmed that he sent Moses money in prison once, but admitted his contact with the defendant had since been limited to a single phone call. He maintained that no one associated with Moses, nor Moses himself, had ever threatened him.

The trial resumed on Nov. 22 with the prosecution’s arguments. Arguments are set to continue on Nov. 28.

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