Dedric Deshon Jackson and Demetrius Matavlo Castle Jr. face several charges, including murder and felony murder, in connection with the death of Norman Ray Moore Jr., 19, on March 13, 2010. Moore died after suffering a fatal gunshot to the chest, which pierced his heart and liver. He also was allegedly "pistol-whipped" and shot once in the arm. A third defendant, Leondris Tyree Jackson, will go to trial this week in juvenile court because of his age - 14 - at the time of the shooting.
Prosecutors said in opening statements Monday that Dedric Jackson and Castle were celebrating Jackson's 18th birthday with a party at 44 Middlebrook Drive that "got out of hand." The pair reportedly bragged about "packing" weapons and were heard talking about their gang affiliation, Bottom Boyz Survivors.
Moore and two friends then arrived at the party to "'holla' at some girls," according to the prosecution's opening. Moore, who also had a weapon tucked into his waistband, allegedly argued with a partygoer and was on the ground when someone stood over him and fired the fatal shot.
The prosecutor said that while witnesses would not talk about "the code" associated with gang life, it would be evident on the stand. "You don't talk about what you saw. ... You didn't see anything, you didn't hear anything, you don't know anything."
Defense attorneys for Jackson and Castle said Moore came "locked and cocked and ready to rock" the night of the shooting. The defense told jurors that "70 percent" of witnesses and the defendants will testify that the deadly shot came from Leondris Jackson.
It also was maintained that Castle remained at the scene after the shooting, talking with authorities. Prosecutors claimed Leondris Jackson and Dedric Jackson fled the scene with Leondris' father; they maintained that Castle stayed on the scene briefly before also fleeing.
Authorities did not locate any firearms or projectiles, although a 9mm shell casing was located near Moore's body.
First responders took the stand in beginning testimony Monday.
Bartow County Deputy Ken See said he arrived at 9:27 p.m. to find Moore lying on his right side at a 45-degree angle with a gunshot wound to the chest.
He said a group of people were standing around the body but CPR was not being administered. See testified that he found Moore barely breathing and with a light pulse.
According to See, he was told at the scene that the friends who arrived with Moore shot the teenager.
A Bartow County EMS paramedic said he arrived within minutes of See and began administering aid to Moore. Despite the use of medications, paramedics were unable to revive a pulse or breathing.
The paramedic testified that he saw a weapon on Moore once they arrived at the emergency room and he saw medical personnel remove a sock containing baggies from Moore's person.
Defense attorneys said Moore was carrying cocaine in the sock.
Testimony will resume at 9 a.m. today in Bartow County Superior Court Judge Scott Smith's courtroom.