The defendant took the stand on Tues.
Frederick, Md (KM) The defense rested on Tuesday in the case of Delajhi Joyner, 25, of New York City. He’s charged with two counts of 1st-degree murder for the deaths of Shondre Naylor and Jermaine Hill, both Frederick County residents. They were stabbed in November, 2017, and run over twice by an automobile along Acacia Court just outside of Frederick.
State’s Attorney Charlie Smith says the defense called the lead detective and backup detective to the stand on Tuesday to go over some gaps in the testimony they gave for the prosecution.
They also called Mr. Joyner to the stand. Smith says Joyner continued to say he was highly intoxicated at the time of the murders. “He tried to make the case for voluntary intoxication which would mitigate the case down from 1st-degree murder to a lesser homicide charge,” Smith says.
“He testified that he had been drinking a lot and finished a couple of bottles of liquor,” says Smith. “But was crossed examined fairly well by Kirsten Brown, Deputy State’s Attorney, who pointed out he had a lot of memory throughout the evening, including what he said to detectives.”
During the testimony, Smith says Joyner had “some choice words for the detective regarding body parts and swabbing.” “Of course, he remembered all that, but then tried to tell everyone that he was intoxicated having drank a high amount of alcohol throughout the evening,” Smith says.
Joyner also testified that the killings were an act of self defense, that the two victims tried to rob him.
Closing arguments are expected to get underway Wednesday morning at 9:00, and then the case will go to the jury for deliberations. “We feel very strongly about our case. We feel very strongly about his guilt. But ultimately, that’s going to be up to 12 people sitting in those chairs,” says Smith.
By Kevin McManus