Sniper trial has begun in Virginia Beach

Oct. 17, 2003, midnight | By Allison Elvove | 17 years, 3 months ago

Jury to decide fate of sniper suspects

The trial of sniper suspect John Allen Muhammad began in Virginia Beach on Tuesday, Oct. 14, a year after the shootings last fall, according to The Washington Post.

This past Tuesday, the jury selection commenced for the first trial of Muhammad, 42, who is accused of two capital murder charges in the death of Dean Meyers, who was shot at a gas station in Prince William County. The trial was moved from Prince William County to Virginia Beach in order to ensure jurors would not be biased by the events of last year.

According to The Post, the jury will base its decision on DNA, fingerprints, bullets, maps, notes and telephone calls and will hear testimonies from the victim's family members as well as from witnesses. The Post also stated that Muhammad's defense attorneys, Peter D. Greenspun and Jonathan Shapiro, "have analyzed thousands of pieces of evidence and have not found anything indicating that Muhammad killed anyone" so will argue against their client receiving the death penalty.

Muhammad's suspected co-conspirator, Lee Boyd Malvo, 18, will be tried next month. He has previously testified that he refuses to answer incriminating questions, but according to The Post, his attorneys said they will assert that Muhammad influenced Malvo to commit the shootings.

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Allison Elvove. Allison Elvove was a Co-Editor-in-Chief of Silver Chips Online during the 2004-2005 school year. She wrote more than 70 articles while on the staff and supervised 40 student journalists, editing articles on a daily basis. During her time as editor, Silver Chips Online won the … More »

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