Stokes trial begins in Wicomico County

The criminal jury trial for 19-year-old Jarrett Stokes began in the Wicomico County Circuit Court on Tuesday.

Stokes is facing fifteen charges including first degree murder for the August shooting death of 17-year-old Rakim Russell. 

The state is claiming Stokes is the trigger man, allegedly firing four shots from a white Chevy Impala across the street from the America’s Best Value Inn parking lot where Russell was killed.

However, the defense says Stokes never stepped foot in that car and wasn’t even within a quarter mile of the crime scene.

Several witnesses were called by the state on Tuesday. Most of them were setting the scene for what they say they saw either before or after Russell was killed.

Terrell Ervin, who is apparently a friend of Stokes, also testified on Tuesday. Ervin says he was with Kyshir Connally and Larry Ennis the night Russell was killed. Ennis was already found guilty of murder and Connally’s murder trial starts next Tuesday.

Ervin says the three of them, along with a few other friends went to the party and left together. Apparently they had to leave because Connally and Ennis were involved in an argument. Ervin says he was dropped off at a friend’s house after the group left the party.

According to a detective who testified on Monday, Ervin said in a police interview that there was a discussion in the car about “a burner” and “baby nine.”  Those terms are slang for a gun. However in court Tuesday, Ervin said the car ride was silent when the group left the America’s Best Value Inn.   

This trial is set to begin again tomorrow (Wednesday) at 9 a.m. It’s scheduled to finish on Thursday.


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