Snow cancels Versypt trial Wednesday


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Posted Online: Jan. 30, 2013, 6:14 pm
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By Vanessa Miller, The Gazette
Testimony in the first-degree murder trial of Justin Marshall, accused in the fatal shooting of a landlord in Iowa City in October 2009, was delayed on Wednesday because of snow.

Judge Sean McPartland decided to cancel proceedings before 8:30 a.m. on Wednesday, letting the 16 jurors avoid the roads if they needed to travel.

The trial is expected to resume today.

Wednesday's delay marks the second time this week testimony has been canceled for an entire day. The stoppages likely will mean the trial will go beyond its original two-week time frame.

Attorneys on Monday spent the entire day discussing and investigating new information that came to light during the weekend from two key witnesses – James Brown and Rhonda Bluitt, neighbors of Marshall and his co-defendant Charles Thompson in the Broadway Condominium complex.

According to police, John Versypt, of Cordova, was a landlord for units in the south Iowa City complex and was checking on them when he was fatally shot during an attempted robbery on Oct. 8, 2009.

Mr. Thompson, 20, was the first person arrested in the case in February 2010, followed by Mr. Marshall, 22, in July 2011 and Courtney White, 25, in October 2011.

All three originally were charged with first-degree murder. But Mr. Thompson's trial, the first of the three, ended in a mistrial when prosecutors inadvertently presented evidence that was inadmissible. Afterthe trial, Mr. Thompson agreed to plead guilty to a lesser charge in exchange for his promise to testify against Marshall. He has not yet taken the stand in Mr. Marshall's trial.

If convicted on the murder charge, both Marshall and White could face life in prison.

















 




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  Today is Tuesday, Sept 2, the 245th day of 2014. There are 120 days left in the year.

1864 — 150 years ago: It is estimated that 300,000 people attended the recent Democratic convention in Chicago when Gen. George B. McClellan of New Jersey was nominated as a candidate for president of the United States.
1889 — 125 years ago: Alderman Frank Ill, Winslow Howard and Captain J.M. Montgomery returned from Milwaukee, where they attended the national Grand Army of the Republic encampment.
1914 — 100 years ago: Three members of the Rock Island YMCA accepted positions as physical directors of other associations. Albert Cook went to Kewanee, C.D. Curtis to Canton and Willis Woods to Leavenworth, Kan.
1939 — 75 years ago: Former President Herbert Hoover appealed for national support of President F.D. Roosevelt and Congress in every effort to keep the United States out of war.
1964 — 50 years ago: The Rock Island Junior chamber pf Commerce has received answers to about 65 % of the 600 questionnaires mailed out recently in a "Community Attitude Survey" to analyze sentiments of citizens towards their city's various recreational, educational, and civic service programs.
1989 — 25 years ago: The two thunderstorms passing through the Quad Cities last night and early today left some area residents reaching for their flashlights.






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