Murder trial for Rono Dunn could wrap up by Wed.

Reported by Gavin Johnson - bio|email
Posted by Lauren Thomson - email
Updated by Debra Worley - email

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WECT) - A murder trial for Rono Darnell Dunn is expected to wrap up its case by Wednesday.

Dunn is accused of shooting Dywaune Simpson on a sidewalk at the Nesbitt Court Apartments in October 2007.

According to District Attorney Ben David, the state presented evidence Friday.

Opening statements and testimony began Monday and Dunn's friends took the stand Tuesday.

Wilmington Police officers found the body of 21-year-old Simpson lying on the ground with a gunshot wound in Newsbeat Court, October 28, 2007.  He was taken to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

More than a year passed before police made an arrest in the case. According to the Wilmington Police Department, Dunn, 38, was arrested in Salem, Massachusetts at the beginning of 2009.

Monday, Dunn entered a New Hanover County courtroom, knowing his fate lies in the hands of twelve jurors.

Prosecutors painted him as a cold-blood killer who took the life of a decent young man.  Prosecutor Doug Carriker compared the incident to that of shooting a dog in the street.  He says the shooter emerged from the shadows and shot Simpson in the back of his head - execution style.

Prosecutors admitted Simpson was a drug dealer, but said he was also the father of two and didn't deserve to die so young.

Defense attorney Tonya Turner turned to the jurors and told them to listen carefully to witnesses, to make sure their statements are consistent and believable.

"At the end of the day if the state has not shown you to your satisfaction beyond a reasonable of doubt, what he stood up here today and told you he was going to show you - you have to find the defendant not guilty," Turner told the jury.

Simpson's sister, Shellery White, was the first to testify Monday morning, saying her brother had been threatened by Dunn.  She said Dunn told Simpson he wouldn't live to see his 21 birthday.

According to White, Simpson feared Dunn and wouldn't take his sons along with him if though the two might meet.  She said her brother was a kind-hearted man with a good intentions.

"He was not a troublemaker," said White.  "Me and my brother we would always defend him, because he always let a lot of people just walk all over him."


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