Reid deemed mentally fit for double murder trial


Share
Originally Posted Online: Dec. 09, 2009, 5:41 pm
Last Updated: Dec. 09, 2009, 8:13 pm
Comment on this story | Print this story | Email this story
By Bill Mayeroff, bmayeroff@qconline.com
A suspect in two 2008 murders is fit to stand trial, a judge ruled Wednesday.

Dr. Kirk Witherspoon testified Wednesday afternoon that Elijah Reid, 31, is capable of understanding and assisting in his trial.

Mr. Reid is scheduled to go to trial in January for the April 2008 murders of Jermaine O. Robinson, 30, and Ryan J. Ferry, 22, both of Moline. The men were found shot to death in a car in Rock Island in what police say may have been a drug deal gone bad.

Dr. Witherspoon and Dr. David McEchron have testified previously that Mr. Reid's IQ is low at about 65. But Dr. Witherspoon told Judge Walter Braud Wednesday that he believes Mr. Reid understands what goes on in a trial.

"I think he's fine," Dr. Witherspoon said. "I recommend to the court he be found fit."

Judge Braud agreed, clearing the way for Mr. Reid's trial next month.

Reliability hearings also were held for two potential witnesses who had shared a jail cell block with Mr. Reid. In a reliability hearing, a judge rules whether a potential witness can be relied on to testify truthfully.

Perry Slater and Leon Simpson both told Judge Braud of their conversations with Mr. Reid about the murders while incarcerated in the Rock Island County Jail.

Mr. Slater, now in a federal prison in Atlanta, said he was in jail with Mr. Reid in April 2008 shortly after Mr. Reid's arrest. Mr. Slater said Mr. Reid told him about getting into a car with the victims to complete a drug transaction, adding that Mr. Reid said he shot both men as money was being counted.

"He said he upped the pistol and popped them," Mr. Slater said.

Reliability hearings for two more witnesses are planned Thursday afternoon, with Judge Braud expected to rule on the reliability of all four witnesses after Thursday's proceedings.




















 



Local events heading








  Today is Tuesday, July 29, the 210th day of 2014. There are 155 days left in the year.

1864 -- 150 years ago: Col. H.F. Sickless informs us that there will be new organization of troops in this state under the call for more men.
1889 -- 125 years ago: James Normoyle arrived home after graduating from West Point with honors in the class of 1889. He was to report to Fort Brady, Mich., as second lieutenant in the 23rd Infantry.
1914 -- 100 years ago: Austria Hungary declared war on Serbia. Germany and Austria refused an invitation of Sir Edward Grey to join Great Britain at a mediation conference.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Dr. William Mayo, the last of the three famous Mayo brother surgeons, died at the age of 78.
1964 -- 50 years ago: One of the biggest horse shows of the season was held yesterday at Hillandale Arena on Knoxville Road under the sponsorship of the Illowa Horsemen's Club.
1989 -- 25 years ago: Davenport is like a gigantic carnival this weekend with the Bix Arts Fest taking over 12 square blocks of the downtown area. A festive atmosphere prevailed Friday as thousands of people turned out to sample what the Arts Fest has to offer.








(More History)