Prosecutor Must Turn Over Video Evidence Ahead of April Murder Trial

A DC Superior Court judge set a deadline for a prosecutor to turn over video evidence in a murder case set to go to trial this spring.

Diquan Lucas, 25, is accused of fatally shooting Brian Butler, 33, on the night of Nov. 21, 2019, after an altercation on the 2300 block of Ainger Place, SE. 

DNA evidence was collected from the crime scene, according to court documents. During the most recent hearing for this case on Feb. 22, the defense waived their right to conduct independent DNA testing.

As parties prepare to take this case to trial in April, defense attorney Roderick Thompson said he needs the video of three witness statements collected shortly after the shooting. These witnesses were minors when the homicide happened. 

The prosecutor opposed this request, arguing the transcripts should have been more than satisfactory for the defense. She said the witnesses were uncomfortable with their identities being released to the defendant and maintained that it would put them at risk.

Thompson pointed to parts of the transcript that suggested the witnesses were using hand gestures and pantomiming when giving their statements, arguing it was vital for them to see this so they could form a full defense.

Judge Milton Lee decided the prosecutor should turn over the video evidence, but issued a protective order so only Thompson and his client could see it. He also agreed to withhold the names of the witnesses.

The next hearing is scheduled for March 9.