A judge on Tuesday said a murder suspect’s former drug dealings with a victim is not enough to prove motive, and denied to allow several witnesses give testimony in a trial.
Dejuan Etheredge was indicted on seven charges, including murder and assault with intent to kill, and has pleaded not guilty.
According to police, at around 3:30 a.m. Sept. 6, 2015, Uyer Hooper, one of two men allegedly shot by Etheredge, was found in the 6400 block of 7th St. NW suffering from gunshot wounds. He was taken to the hospital and pronounced dead. The other man was taken to the hospital and survived.
A prosecutor said they planned to present witnesses who would testify that Etheredge used to give Hooper drugs to sell on the street. The day of the shooting, the prosecutor said, witnesses say Hooper was purchasing drugs from another person to re-sell, which led Etheredge to fatally shoot Hooper.
The judge said the defendant’s status as an alleged drug dealer and his relationship to the victim was not enough to prove motive, and will not allow those witnesses to testify in front of the jury.
The case is set to resume Wednesday.