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Shaquille Jones walks from Double Murder charge Print E-mail
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Thursday, 07 February 2013 00:00

ShaquilleOn Tuesday, February 5th, 21-year-old Shaquille Jones, who has been on remand since he was 17 years old, was acquitted of charges of murder upon 29-year-old Jermaine Trapp and 18-year-old Cameron Blease. Jones was accused of killing Trapp and Blease shortly after 3 a.m. on December 26th, 2008. According to reports, the men were just leaving Club Next located inside the Princess Hotel and Casino when they were ambushed by a gunman while heading to Trapp’s vehicle, which was parked in the hotel’s compound. The gunman opened fire at the men. As Trapp tried to drive away, one of the bullets struck him in the shoulder and the other to the back of his head. Blease was shot once to the hand and once to the chest. Trapp immediately succumbed to his injuries while Jones died ten days later.

Police later arrested and charged 17-year-old Shaquille Jones for the murder of both men. According to police, it was Blease, who identified the gunman while on his hospital bed. The murder case began on Monday, January 28th, 2013 before Justice Troadio Gonzalez in the Supreme Court and prosecutors Kayshia Grant and Leroy Banner called 6 witnesses to testify. There was no witness to point out Jones as the gunman; therefore, the prosecution relied heavily on the statement allegedly given by Blease from his hospital bed. When the prosecution closed its case, Jones' attorney, Arthur Saldivar, made a no case submission to the court. He argued that Blease never signed the statement since there was only an “X” marked for the signature. Saldivar pointed to Blease’s mother’s testimony in which she said that she was with her son while police came to speak with him and she didn’t see him sign any statement. After considering the entire case before him, Justice Gonzalez upheld Saldivar's submission, and directed a jury of 12 to return a verdict of not guilty.

Jones was allowed to leave the court a free man.