2007 shooting death trial begins
Friday, June 20, 2008DARRYL Q. TUCKERTHE SAGINAW NEWS
A trial has started for a Saginaw man facing charges in the shooting death of a 74-year-old man who collected money for illegal lotteries.
Freddie L. Powell, 25, faces charges of felony murder of Elijah McCray, armed robbery of money, resisting and obstructing a police officer, two charges of carrying a concealed weapon and two counts of possessing a firearm while committing a felony May 18, 2007.
Powell approached McCray's red Chevrolet pickup at Bagley and East Holland, said Saginaw County Assistant Prosecutor James T. Borchard.
A gun-toting Powell pointed his weapon and demanded money from McCray, who lived in Bridgeport Township, he told the jury of five men and nine women.
Evidence showed that McCray reached for the gun and Powell shot him once in the head at point-blank range, Borchard said. Powell, who lived at 351 S. 11th, fled the scene.
Defense attorney William D. White told jurors prosecutors won't prove that his client intended to kill McCray. ''Evidence will show the victim struggled over the gun and it discharged accidentally,'' White said.
Powell was in jail without bond. A conviction could lead to a sentence of up to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
Police arrested Powell on May 21, 2007, after they pulled him over during a traffic stop.
Saginaw Police Detective Robert Ruth testified McCray was carrying an undisclosed amount of money and betting slips. When police arrived, McCray's betting slips were gone but the money was there.
Circuit Judge Darnell Jackson is presiding over the trial that was to resume today.