Jury Finds Gerald Taylor Guilty of Accessory - WHLT 22 Connecting the Pine Belt

Jury Finds Gerald Taylor Guilty of Accessory

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It took the jury less than six hours to find the defendant Gerald Taylor guilty for accessory after the fact of a felony in connection with a 2011 murder.

Taylor's trial started  Tuesday with opening statements and testimonies from witnesses. They gave their personal accounts of what happened the day Edward Coleman was killed.

The victim was shot twice inside his store after what law enforcement says was a robbery.

The defendant's attorney Tom Fortner said he was happy with the verdict.

"I'm very pleased I think it was a fair verdict," he said.

The state was pushing for a capital murder conviction but Fortner said he's glad the jury saw differently.

"I think that they took the trial really seriously, and that's just basically what the evidence in the case shows," Fortner said.

Taylor took the stand Wednesday. He testified that he didn't go inside the store when the robbery and murder was happening.

Fortner says he believes that's why the jury decided not to convict his client of capital murder and only accessory.

"I think that they were not convinced from the evidence that there was a robbery and that my client was involved in a robbery killing, I think they were convinced from the evidence that he did participate afterwards in disposing of some evidence."

The judge sentenced Taylor to five years.

"At this point I'm not planning to do anything else," said Fortner.

District Attorney Patricia Burchell declined to comment on the case.

 

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  • Donesha Aldridge

    Donesha Aldridge

    I am a Digital Journalist here at WHLT. My earliest dreams about becoming a reporter started at 4-years-old. I can remember growing up as a child pretending to be an anchor and making my younger brother
    Donesha Aldridge's earliest dreams about becoming a reporter started at 4-years-old. She remembers growing up as a child pretending to be an anchor and making her younger brother
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