Judge Finds Probable Cause in First-Degree Murder Case

A DC Superior Court judge ruled that there is enough evidence against a homicide defendant to bring his case to trial.

Marwin Thomas, 27, is charged with first-degree murder while armed for allegedly shooting 33-year-old John Pollard on Sept. 30, 2020, on the 3200 block of Hiatt Place, NW.

“The video of the actual shooting is quite compelling,” Judge Marisa Demeo said during the July 8 hearing.

The prosecution showed surveillance footage from about 1:14 a.m. on the day of the homicide. 

The video shows two men exiting a black BMW, approaching the victim and patting him down before the man who exited the car’s passenger side shoots him.

The prosecution alleges Thomas to be the shooter. They cited a navy blue polo shirt the shooter is seen wearing in the footage, which appears consistent with the shirt Thomas is seen wearing in surveillance footage from the stairwell of an apartment building near the crime scene about an hour before the shooting. 

In the stairwell footage, Thomas is seen wearing a Hugo Boss satchel that looks the same as the one Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) officers found at the crime scene. But during defense attorney Russell Hairston‘s cross-examination, the detective said there were no identifying characteristics linking that specific satchel to the one Thomas is seen wearing. Rather, they simply appear to be the same product.

The car driver seen in the footage of the shooting is alleged to be Thomas’ 29-year-old co-defendant, Randle Price. Price is also charged with first-degree murder while armed in connection with Pollard’s death. He had his preliminary hearing back in January.

An MPD detective on the case testified that a witness heard nine gunshots and saw a car consistent with the one seen leaving the crime scene. The detective said seven nine-millimeter shell casings were found on the scene.

Judge Demeo decided to hold Thomas, citing the strength of the evidence and Thomas’ arrest history.

Both Thomas and Price are scheduled to return to court on Sept. 1.