Focus Turns To Cell Phone Records On Day Three Of Porch Shooting Trial
DETROIT (WWJ/AP) — Davonta Bynes expected the 19-year-old Renisha McBride to stop by his west side Detroit home late Nov. 1, 2013, for a small get-together.
The two traded text messages and a phone call, but as the hours passed it became clear to Bynes that he wouldn’t see her that night.
“I think … she might have been drinking. She was slurring” her speech, he testified Monday during the trial of Theodore Wafer, the man charged with shooting McBride to death outside his Dearborn Heights home.
During the third day of testimony in the trial of Wafer, 54, who faces murder charges in the shooting of a McBride on the front porch of his home last November, the defense turned to cell phone records as the latest evidence on Monday.
Several phone calls and texts were made by Renisha McBride’s father during the evening when she was fatally shot on Wafer’s porch, according to ATF cell phone analyst Stan Brue.
The defense tried to characterize the police investigation as being incomplete as defense attorney Cheryl Carpenter pointed out that phone calls and messages left on McBride’s phone following the traffic accident were not investigated by police.
McBride was shot in the face in the early morning hours Nov. 2 on the porch of a home on Outer Drive near Warren Avenue. Hours earlier, McBride was involved in a car accident several blocks north of where the shooting later occurred. McBride’s family believes she was searching for help when she was killed.
Prosecutors have said there was no reason to use deadly force instead of calling police. They charged Wafer with second-degree murder.
On Monday, prosecutors called a number of police experts to testify on evidence from her phone, the crash and the shooting.
No calls were answered on McBride’s cellphone after she crashed her car, testified Brue, a special agent with the federal bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and Explosives who analyzed calls and texts to and from the phone.
McBride’s father had been trying to reach her that night and appeared frustrated in a text message that she hadn’t returned his calls, Brue said.
Brue found that a call was made from McBride’s phone to her father shortly before 10 p.m. on Nov. 1. The call lasted 4 minutes and 44 seconds.
After the crash, calls to her phone went to voicemail, Brue said.
Carpenter told jurors last week that Wafer was awakened by pounding at a door and believed two or more people were outside.
As the pounding continued, Wafer loaded his shotgun, opened the front door and fired, hitting McBride in the face, Carpenter said.
An autopsy found McBride’s blood-alcohol level was about 0.22, nearly three times Michigan’s legal limit for driving.
Other witnesses called to the stand Monday by prosecutors included crime lab officers and a state police forensic scientist.
Testimony will continue Tuesday.
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