The last time Grace Delphin saw her boyfriend in person before he was fatally shot, he was pedaling away from her house on his bicycle to go pick up food.
Jaemari A. Anderson, 19, died after police say he was shot in the head Sept. 6, 2020, in the Waterside community of Frederick where he lived. Three men were charged with first-degree murder in his death. Brian B. Henry pleaded guilty to being an accessory after the fact to murder, Daniel A. Flythe awaits trial, and the third man is amid week three of his jury trial.
Frederick resident Jordan B. Hooks, 29, is on trial after pleading not guilty to all 11 charges he faces. Earlier in the trial, Henry testified Hooks and Anderson agreed to a fight outside Hooks’ residence in the Waterside community after Anderson suggested he was better than the others. When Anderson turned away from Hooks to take off his glasses before the fight, Henry said Flythe shot Anderson.
On Tuesday, Delphin testified she and Anderson were hanging out at her place the day before the shooting, watching movies and playing with her dog. When he left, he was heading to a local eatery to grab food for himself and Hooks, Delphin said. Anderson hadn’t been staying at home lately because he gave up his room for his pregnant sister temporarily, and he was spending some nights at Hooks’ residence, Delphin testified.
The day of the shooting, Delphin said Anderson was supposed to come to her residence, but he never showed. She texted and called him to no avail. When he texted her earlier, she said his messages were short and scattered.
“I can’t talk right now. Something’s happening. Hold on,” Delphin recalled him texting her.
The defense raised objections as Assistant State’s Attorney Tim Gilbert posed questions to Delphin about Anderson and Hooks’ relationship and Hooks’ friends. When the defense objected to a question about Anderson’s text messages, the attorneys approached Judge Julia A. Martz-Fisher’s bench for a discussion. After a few minutes, the judge excused jurors for the day, around 4:40 p.m.
Other witnesses Tuesday spoke to the testing of evidence. Whitley Mayo, a firearms and tool marks examiner with the Maryland State Police Forensic Sciences Division, said she test fired a .380 caliber Bersa semi-automatic pistol the Frederick County County Sheriff’s Office sent to her lab in Pikesville. Prosecutors believe the gun was used to kill Anderson. Mayo said she determined a .380 caliber cartridge casing recovered by police from the scene was fired from the Bersa.
What’s uncertain, however, is whether the bullet recovered from Anderson’s head matches the Bersa. Mayo testified the projectile can neither be identified nor eliminated as being fired from the Bersa due to damage the projectile sustained and lack of characteristics present.
A witness is being held in confinement until she’s called to testify after the judge said she failed to appear in response to a subpoena.
Before the jury returned from lunch, Martz-Fisher held a bail review for defense witness Tynoura Coleman, who came from lock-up wearing an orange and white detention center uniform. Earlier in the trial, Henry testified Coleman was present for the shooting and wiped off the firearm with a T-shirt before Henry threw it out a car window. As of Tuesday night, criminal charges were not filed against Coleman in Frederick County online court records.
Assistant Public Defender Leslie Guthrie said there was a “misunderstanding” as to what day Coleman thought she was supposed to appear in court. Guthrie alluded to transportation being an issue, and said Coleman recently got a new phone number. Martz-Fisher was skeptical, saying the defense in the homicide case spoke to Coleman about when she was to appear and that they’d been waiting on her for some time.
“I just don’t have any confidence she’s going to show up to court,” Martz-Fisher said before ordering Coleman held until she’s called to testify. “This is what happens when you don’t show up.”