Parties Deliver Closing Arguments in 2018 Murder Trial

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Parties delivered their closing arguments in a homicide trial on Sept. 15.

Edward Brown, 61, is charged with first-degree murder while armed and robbery while armed of a senior citizen in connection to the murder of 77-year-old Michael Mahoney on the 2300 block of 11th Street, NW, on Feb. 5, 2018.

During closing arguments, the prosecutor told the jury the defendant’s motive for the murder of Mahoney. 

Prosecution stated that Brown owed a witness money for eating her food and he knew that Mahoney had withdrawn $600 from the bank to pay his rent. 

According to the security footage, no other individual is seen entering Mahoney’s apartment after Brown.

Additionally, the prosecution argued that the defendant committed several acts that alluded to his “consciousness of guilt,” such as wearing different clothes after leaving Mahoney’s apartment, moving out of Mahoney’s apartment at 1:16 a.m. on Feb. 4, and avoiding the police that were investigating Mahoney’s death. 

The prosecutor also referenced a forensic biology analyst’s testimony, who estimated that Mahoney died 18 hours prior to the autopsy.

DNA testing included a white tank top, jeans, and Redskins jacket. All three items tested positive for blood. Also, DNA on the black t-shirt and jeans, which was from both Mahoney and Brown.

“We ask you to find the only verdict that is consistent with the evidence,” said the prosecutor. 

Defense attorney Kevin Mosley stressed that Brown did not need to steal Mahoney’s money because he had a car and a job. 

“This was an unwitnessed murder. No one saw it. You don’t know what happened,” Mosley said. 

Mosley also said a key witness lied and was under the influence of stimulants. The witness had “no ability to connect time and memory,” stated Mosley. 

Furthermore, Mosley said the DNA evidence was tainted because police failed to consider some individuals that could have contaminated those materials during the two days before Feb. 5. 

Mosley also argued that there was a “failure to investigate” the video surveillance from before Feb. 2 and after Feb. 5, the exterior security cameras, the footage from the other floors, and the sign-in log from the apartment building. He also said there is a “blindspot” between two apartments that the security camera does not capture. 

Mosley referenced the forensic pathologist’s testimony, who apparently explained that there are too many variables to accurately determine Mahoney’s time of death. “The government wants to put a time of death at a time Mr. Brown was in the apartment,” he said. 

“I implore you to consider all of the evidence,” Mosley told the jury. “The evidence that there is and the evidence that is lacking.” 

During redirect the prosecutor said that in order to believe the defendant’s theory, one would have to suppose that another person knew Mahoney had money, knew where the security camera blindspots were, and they would have had to transfer Mahoney’s blood without leaving any of their DNA as evidence. This “doesn’t make sense,” said the prosecutor.  

“Mr. Mahoney was telling you in his last moments on Earth that the defendant stabbed him and left him there to die,” the prosecutor said. 

After the parties completed their closing arguments, DC Superior Court Judge Rainey Brandt gave the jury instructions before they began deliberating. 

The trial is set to continue on Sept. 19. 

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