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Published: Monday, March 20, 2017 @ 12:57 PM
A jury has been selected in the murder trial of Nina M. Davis, a Dayton woman accused of shooting and killing Travis Smith in June 2016. Opening statements were expected to begin at 1:45 p.m.
Davis, 35, was indicted for two counts of murder, two counts of felonious assault and one count of tampering with evidence. Smith was shot once on his 34th birthday with a .45-caliber handgun after an argument, according to prosecutors. Police located the weapon hidden inside a dresser drawer.
Montgomery County Common Pleas Court Judge Gregory Singer ruled prosecutors will be able to present evidence that Davis had verbal altercations in which she threatened to kill Smith. Singer also ruled that Davis’ defense attorney can’t present evidence that Smith was a drug dealer.
“(Smith) informed neighbors he was moving out of the home he shared with (Davis) the day before the shooting,” Montgomery County assistant prosecutor Kraig Chadrick wrote in a motion to use so-called bad prior acts. “When interviewed by detectives following the shooting, (Davis) claimed it was an accident.
“It follows that the evidence set forth above goes to show (Davis’) motive for shooting (Smith) as well as a lack of mistake or accident and will be admitted by the State for reason other than (Davis’) character.”
Defense attorney Anthony VanNoy argued against such evidence, saying it would be highly prejudicial to Davis.
“It is impermissible to allow the jury to decide her guilt and sentence, not on the specific facts of the incident she is charged,” VanNoy wrote. “But rather by using unreliable, inaccurate accounts of a prior altercation made by bias neighbors, who grew up with Smith, and may have been taking money from him in exchange for their silence about his drug activities.”
In a written motion, prosecutors also asked Singer to deny information that Smith was involved in drug activity, such as “video surveillance systems, firearms and a safe containing suspected heroin.”
Chadrick wrote that “whether or not the decedent was involved in drug activity is not an essential element of any charge contained in the indictment.”
VanNoy argued Smith’s activities should be fair game.
“Smith’s daily drug activity is relevant because it highlights the lifestyle and toxic environment in which him and Davis had grown accustomed to living,” VanNoy wrote. “Drugs were a constant part of life in the household. Smith frequently carried his gun to protect himself while carrying out his drug activities.”
Chadrick also asked Singer to prevent VanNoy from “commenting on, questioning witnesses, or presenting evidence regarding battered woman syndrome,” which he said is a part of a self-defense claim and not consistent with an accidental shooting defense.
Published: Saturday, February 24, 2018 @ 11:07 PM
DAYTON — A gunshot victim arrived tonight at Good Samaritan Hospital, which notified police.
The shooting reportedly happened in the 700 block of Ferguson Avenue in Dayton, according to the Montgomery County Regional Dispatch Center.
Dayton police were dispatched to the hospital around 9:45 p.m.
The victim’s name, age and condition was not available tonight.
Published: Saturday, February 24, 2018 @ 5:31 PM
LEBANON — The Warren County Sheriff’s Office is warning people of a phone scam that cost one area resident about $2,000.
Sgt. Roy McGill said since Feb. 15, several residents who live inside and outside Warren County have received phone calls from someone identifying himself as a “Sgt. Corey Adams” of the sheriff’s office and telling them he has a warrant for their arrest.
The fake deputy then tells the resident to purchase pre-paid debit cards from local retailers and subsequently requests the debit card numbers for payment, over the phone, to keep from being arrested on the warrant. McGill said at least one victim provided payment information and was scammed out of approximately $2,000.
Published: Saturday, February 24, 2018 @ 3:46 PM
WINCHESTER, Mass. — A 22-year-old woman is dead after a double stabbing Saturday at a public library in Massachusetts.
Winchester police tell Boston 25 News they were called to the Winchester Public Library just after 10:30 a.m.
When police arrived, they found a female and an elderly man both suffering from stab wounds, Boston25News reported.
Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan says the 22-year-old female was in the library sitting at a table when the suspect, 24-year-old Jeffrey Yao, approached her from behind and stabbed her with a 10-inch hunting knife.
She suffered multiple stab wounds to the head and upper torso and was taken to the hospital, where she was pronounced dead.
Several people in the library ran to help the woman, including a 77-year-old man who also sustained stab wounds, Boston25News reported. He was taken to the hospital.
Yao was arrested in connection with the stabbing. He is being held without bail and is facing murder and assault with intent to murder with a dangerous weapon charges.
Officials did not say if the stabbing was random or if Yao knew the victim. They are still investigating the stabbing - including the motive.
The victim has not been identified.
Published: Saturday, February 24, 2018 @ 2:44 PM
Updated: Saturday, February 24, 2018 @ 2:33 PM
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Police arrested a Florida man Monday after he allegedly broke into a sleeping woman’s home and committed sexual battery.
Officers responded to an apartment in an undisclosed West Palm Beach neighborhood about 5 a.m. Feb. 19 when a woman called and said she woke up to a man kneeling at the foot of her bed and touching her genital area, according to the arrest report.
She told officers that she asked the man — who was later identified as 27-year-old Lamarsh Shelly — what he was doing in her house, and he said “your door was open,” the police report states.
According to the arrest report, Shelly then asked her if she wanted to have sex and asked her for a cigarette. She gave him a cigarette, and she demanded he leave the apartment. She told officers that she knew him from the neighborhood, and he went by the nickname “Honeycomb.”
The woman said Shelly was wearing a black shirt with tan pants, the Palm Beach Post reported. Officers then spoke to another witness who said that she saw Shelly outside of the apartment walking north while smoking a cigarette.
Officers located Shelly at 8th Street and Herietta Avenue, where he told officers, “I don’t burglarize and I don’t want sex,” the report states.
Shelly later admitted to officers that he walked into the apartment, opened the front door and saw the victim sleeping in her bed, the Palm Beach Post reported. He said that he made noises to wake her up to tell her that her front door was open, but did not mention touching her.
Police said children were sleeping in the apartment when the incident occurred.