Judge Holds Murder Defendant During Initial Hearings

During initial hearings on March 9, DC Superior Court Judge Lloyd Nolan held a first-degree murder defendant.

In total, there was one homicide defendant and four domestic violence defendants presented before the judge.

Rashon Hall is charged with first-degree murder while armed in the shooting of 22-year-old Joseph Simmons on Jan. 3. It was the second homicide to be reported in DC in 2021.

According to the police report, Hall, 25, allegedly shot Simmons from behind at 11:23 a.m. on the 2800 block of Alabama Avenue, SE. 

Defense counsel asked the judge not to find probable cause, saying that there is a lot of information about the car that was involved in the shooting but nothing that truly identifies the shooter. According to one of the witnesses, the suspect was a Black male with dreadlocks, but Hall has twists, which defense attorney Dana Page said are quite different.

The prosecution asked the judge to find probable cause citing the cell site data that was collected using Hall’s phone number, which allegedly follows the path of the shooter on Jan. 3.

The judge did find probable cause, though he admitted the description of the suspect was very vague. However, he said the description of the car, including a partial license plate number, was found to be connected with Hall.

Additionally, another witness came forward and said he helped Hall spray-paint the car sometime after the offense occurred.

Judge Nolan decided to hold Hall pending his next hearing given the nature of the crime and because Hall is on pretrial release for another firearms offense.

Hall’s next hearing is scheduled for March 31.

A domestic violence defendant, charged with destruction of property and violation of a Temporary Protection Order (TPO) was also held because he was unable or unwilling to agree to the terms of release. 

The defendant appeared via WebEx video from the Central Cell Block (CCB).

During the hearing, the judge and defense counsel both tried to speak to the defendant regarding staying away from the alleged victim and following the TPO, but he was unresponsive. Defense counsel said that he was in compliance with his parole conditions, but the judge said he was unwilling to release him if he could not be confident that he would follow orders.

The defendant’s next hearing is scheduled for March 30. Defense counsel also requested a forensic screening for the defendant.

Finally, three additional domestic violence defendants were released to return back to court on Aug. 10. Their charges involved simple assault, destruction of property, attempted second-degree theft and contempt. In addition to reporting to the Pretrial Services Agency (PSA), they were all given stay-away orders from the complainants in their cases.