Louisiana Officer On Trial For Killing 6-Year Old Jeremy Mardis

Derrick Stafford  (Louisiana State Police via AP, File)

A jury of 12 and 2 alternates have heard opening statements and is hearing testimony in the trial of Derrick Stafford.  The trial is taking place in Marksville, Louisiana.  Stafford, along with his partner Norris Greenhouse, Jr. are charged with second-degree murder and attempted second-degree murder in the November 2, 2015 shooting death of 6-year old Jeremy Mardis.  Jeremy was the in the vehicle with his dad, Christopher Few, who was wounded when Stafford and his Greenhouse, Jr. opened fire.

Greenhouse, Jr. is scheduled for a separate trial later this year.

The L.A. Times reports:

“Video from a police officer’s body camera shows the father had his hands raised inside his vehicle when the officers fired their semiautomatic pistols. At least four of their 18 shots ripped into the child’s body while he was strapped into the front seat.

Relatives of the victims wept as jurors watched the graphic video from the shooting. Several jurors were also seen wiping away tears.”

Jeremy Mardis

Stafford and Greenhouse stated that they opened fire on Few because he tried ramming his car into them.  A state police detective has testified there isn’t any physical evidence that Few’s car collided with Greenhouse’s vehicle.

Ballistics evidence shows none of the 18 shots fired by the two deputies hit the front or back of Few’s car.  The prosecution is using that as evident that neither deputy was in danger.  “Cars don’t move sideways,” the prosecutor said.

On March 20, 2017, Police Lt. Kenneth Parnell testified for the prosecution that he drew his gun at the scene of a the shooting but that he didn’t join Stafford and Greenhouse in the shooting because he didn’t fear for his life.  Parnell’s body camera captured the shooting and its bloody aftermath.

 

Posted on 03/22/2017, in Cases, Christopher Few, Jeremy Mardis, Trial Videos and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 24 Comments.

  1. yahtzeebutterfly

    Thanks for this update, Xena.

    So heartbreaking.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. crustyolemothman

    I am following this trial, and hoping justice will be done. One positive note is that because this case attracted such an outpouring of concern by the general public that it will be difficult for the prosecutor to not secure a conviction. Let’s hope the outcome is fair as far a punishment is concerned as well!

    Xena, I truly hope you are recovering quickly from the medical procedures you suffered thru… You are a beacon of light in a world of increasing darkness…

    Liked by 7 people

    • Mothman,
      Thanks for much for your kind words. I am recovering. The area looks like something from an alien movie, but the pain is minimum now.

      In this case, the body cam video shows the truth, but we know there have been cases where the jury saw video and hung. What is heartbreaking here is that regardless of what is said about Few, Jeremy was totally innocent and Stafford clearly said that he didn’t see a kid in the vehicle. If he didn’t see little Jeremy, then he didn’t see Few with his hands up either.

      Liked by 5 people

      • I hope you do feel better now Xena. And yes, juries have decided LEOs aren’t guilty even when their account of a police shooting clearly disputes what their body cameras recorded.

        Liked by 2 people

  3. Hi Zena, I did not know that you were ailing. Your full and swift recovery is in my prayers. Your patience and perseverance inspire me and your care for others lend hope to us all.

    Liked by 4 people

  4. Report from yesterday was that the State was expected to rest. There’s a video at this link.

    http://www.knoe.com/content/news/416874003.html

    Liked by 5 people

  5. chuquestaquenumber1

    This is the real Shots Fired. Forget the tv show.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Trial Update

    Defense attorneys brought a former Marksville police chief to the stand Thursday to be a character witness for Derrick Stafford, but it only opened the door for the prosecution to tell jurors about a 2011 rape indictment against their client.

    Ellis Walker was police chief when Stafford was hired as a Marksville Police Department officer, He testified of Stafford’s history in law enforcement. On cross-examination, Walker was asked if there was ever a time when he had to suspend Stafford.

    Walker answered that he had to suspend Stafford because he’d been indicted on rape charges. The defense asked for a mistrial.

    The jury was escorted out. Judge Bennet denied the defense’s motion for a mistrial.

    The defense called Megan Dixon as a witness. She came into the courtroom in a red Avoyelles Parish Jail jumpsuit and shackled at her hands, feet and waist. Dixon, 31, and Christopher Few had been dating before the shooting. Dixon testified that she and Few had been at TJ’s Lounge in Marksville earlier on the night of the shooting, and that Few had gotten jealous and thrown his pool stick when she danced with bartender Vernon Brown.

    Christopher Few, Jeremy’s dad, was also called by the defense. Christopher had been shot in the head and chest. Paramedics at the scene said there was brain matter coming from the head wound. Christopher now has a metal plate in his head and memory problems.

    http://www.thetowntalk.com/story/news/2017/03/23/stafford-defense-brings-witnesses-refute-excessive-force-claims/99538982/

    Liked by 3 people

    • Wow. If Megan Dixon is the defense witness and has to be brought in shackled from the waist down, what kind of town are we talking about? Or could this be what passes for subtle pressure to say the ‘right’ thing?

      Like

  7. Liked by 2 people

  8. Found guilty of manslaughter. There are no winners here.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. chuquestaquenumber1

    Swift Justice towards a killer. This is how it’s supposed to be. Let’s hope Louisiana does the same for Alton Sterling’s killers.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Chuquest,
      Thanks for the update. The news is reporting that Stafford was found guilty on the lesser charge of manslaughter and attempted manslaughter, rather than second-degree and attempted second-degree murder. But, at least there is a conviction and Stafford is looking at a maximum sentence. of 60 years. His sentencing is next week.

      Liked by 4 people

  10. Hat tip to Chuquestaquenumber1

    March 31, 2017
    Stafford Sentenced to 40 years.

    For attempted manslaughter of Christopher Few: 15 years with credit for time served since 11/3/2015.

    Manslaughter of Jeremy Mardis: 40 years with credit for time served since 11/3/2015. 20 years to be served without parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

    The two sentences are to run concurrently.

    Here’s a copy of the judge’s sentencing order.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Hmm, they must have thought that they were white. The game don’t play like that.

    Like

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