The jury investigating the circumstances surrounding the fatal police shooting of Deangelo Evans was discharged yesterday after the foreman asked to be released from his duties.
Evans was shot dead on May 27, 2018 after he allegedly pointed a .40mm pistol at Corporal Donald Wright and Inspector Akeem Wilson.
The foreman said he was no longer comfortable sitting on the matter after he was accused of inappropriate conduct.
Before the jury was brought in, attorney K. Melvin Munroe questioned the juror’s ability to be true to his oath based on a conversation he allegedly had with a relative, who is also a policeman, about the case on Tuesday night.
The foreman allegedly told his relative, “We sending two policemen to jail tomorrow. How could you shoot a person with no gun 14 times?”
When questioned about his alleged remarks, the juror admitted to speaking to his relative; however, he denied that they discussed the case.
Nevertheless, the juror said he no longer wanted to sit on the matter since he was being “accused”.
After a 15-minute recess, coroner Kara Turnquest-Deveaux ruled that the matter would proceed since the jury was not making a finding of guilt or innocence.
Munroe called Wright to the stand and he recounted how his “life flashed before his eyes” when he allegedly saw Evans pull a gun from his waist.
The officers were dispatched to the Mason’s Addition area in search of a suspect who had robbed Taylor’s Convenience on Burial Ground Corner.
Wright said they saw two suspects and Wilson used the unmarked police SUV to cut them off at Sandy Lane.
Wright claimed that while Wilson searched one of the men, he saw Evans pull a gun from his waist.
He claimed that he feared for his safety and that of his partner, so he fired multiple shots from his 9mm service revolver.
Wright said Evans fell to the ground and Wilson kicked the gun away from Evans’ body before asking police control room to send an ambulance.
He said a crowd gathered and people cursed and threatened the officers.
When it was time for the jury to pose questions, the foreman once again said that he wanted to be let off the case.
Turnquest-Deveaux granted his request and rescheduled the inquest for July 24.
The inquest was the first concerning police-involved shootings since 2019.
The court was unable to hear police matters due to the absence of a lawyer to marshal the evidence.
Patrick Sweeting was recently assigned as the court’s marshal.
Ryszard Humes of Munroe and Associates represents the interests of Evans’ family.