Prosecution and Defense Argue Over Using Instagram Photos As Evidence

During a trial readiness hearing on Feb. 20, the defense and prosecution argued over whether or not to allow photos that were posted on social media by the defendant in trial.

Dajuan Jones, 19, is charged with first-degree murder while armed for the alleged shooting of 26-year-old Cheyenne Washington on the 4400 block of E Street, SE in July of 2018. Jones is also charged with possession of a firearm during a crime of violence, carrying a pistol without a license with prior felony, possession of an unregistered firearm and unlawful possession of ammunition. 

Prescott Loveland, one of Jones’ two defense attorneys, argued that the judge should not allow the prosecution to use photos that Jones posted on social media days before the crime in court. The photos were not entirely described but involve Jones in possession of a gun. 

Loveland said that there is no way to identify that gun in the photo as the gun used in the crime. He also said it is not uncommon to post old photos on social media, and that Jones posting it days before the crime does not mean that is when it was taken. 

“We live in a world where lots of kids are posting photos of guns but that doesn’t mean that they shot someone,” he said. 

The prosecution said there is an expert witness who could testify that the gun posted on Jones’ Instagram account is consistent with the type of gun that could shoot the type of bullets found at the crime scene. 

DC Superior Court Judge Neal Kravitz has not yet ruled on whether or not the photos will be admitted into evidence. 

The hearing is scheduled to continue on Feb. 24.