Witness No Show In Murder Case Frustrates Area Law Enforcement - WICU12 HD WSEE Erie, PA News, Sports, Weather and Events

Witness No Show In Erie Murder Case Frustrates Area Law Enforcement

Posted: Updated:

More on a local murder case, where a judge is forced to drop homicide charges because a key witness in the case didn't show to testify.
Now, police and prosecutors are reacting.

In a case like this, a murder case, it's not easy for law enforcement to see charges dismissed.

29 year old Michael James was all smiles as he left the courtroom Wednesday afternoon.
A judge had no other choice but to drop homicide charges against him, after a key witness in the case, Chris Barnes, refused to show up to court to testify.
Police have charged James in the July shooting death of 25 year old Teverous Williams.

This is the latest in a string of violent crime cases, where a judge was forced to drop charges because witnesses or victims didn't show.
It's become very frustrating for area law enforcement.

"There's a lot of hard work and time and resources put into investigating a crime such as a homicide. and when you finally make that point when you can get enough evidence to change someone only to have it come apart in the courtroom, because a victim or witness fails to show up to testify on behalf of the commonwealth, it can be very frustrating." Said Erie Police Chief Steve Franklin.

"This is just ridiculous. It's just beyond ridiculous. This witness I don't know if he was intimated, if he really was intimidated or now, but what's particularly sad about this is not only that it was a murder case but this witness was supposed to be the victim's best friend." Said Assistant District Attorney, Bob Sambroak.

James is still being held on $25,000 dollars bond, on other charges.
Judge LeFavier tells us this is only the second time in his 25 year career he's had to toss a case like this.

But it's not over, there's a warrant out for Barnes' arrest on contempt of court for not showing up to testify.
Police are now looking for him.

The district attorney's office says there's no statute of limitations on a murder charge, so they will continue to pursue the case against James.

Submit your event now
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Pope Philadelphia

    Pope to Make First U.S. Visit in PA

    Pope to Make First U.S. Visit in PA

    Friday, July 25 2014 11:23 AM EDT2014-07-25 15:23:39 GMT
    Catholic News ServiceCatholic News Service
    The Catholic News Service is reporting Pope Francis has accepted the invitation of Philadelphia Archbishop Charles J. Chaput to attend the World Meeting of Families in the U.S. next year.More >>
    The Catholic News Service is reporting Pope Francis has accepted the invitation of Philadelphia Archbishop Charles J. Chaput to attend the World Meeting of Families in the U.S. next year.More >>
  • Canadian teen begins long swim home

    Canadian teen begins long swim home

    Friday, July 25 2014 12:13 PM EDT2014-07-25 16:13:47 GMT
    A canadian teenager is trying to swim her way back to her home country this morning.More >>
    A canadian teenager is trying to swim her way back to her home country this morning.More >>
  • Fire Breaks Out in Abandoned Building

    Fire Breaks Out in Abandoned Building

    Friday, July 25 2014 9:06 AM EDT2014-07-25 13:06:08 GMT
    Fire broke out around 11:00 p.m., Thursday at an abandoned factory along East 16th Street, in between French and Holland streets.More >>
    Fire broke out around 11:00 p.m., Thursday at an abandoned factory along East 16th Street, in between French and Holland streets.More >>
  • Fatal Hit-and-Run Investigation Continues

    Fatal Hit-and-Run Investigation Continues

    Thursday, July 24 2014 10:30 PM EDT2014-07-25 02:30:28 GMT
    On the night of February 20, 51-year-old Emery Black's life came to an end, after he became the victim of a hit-and-run. It happened in front of his house on West 15th and Liberty Streets. Six months later, Black’s neighbor Bobby Fletcher is still trying to make sense of his death. "I miss the guy,” said Fletcher. “This apartment building, it's a big complex. He cut the grass, when the snow came, he helped shovel. You don't find people like him." Police have released surveillance video of...More >>
    On the night of February 20, 51-year-old Emery Black's life came to an end, after he became the victim of a hit-and-run. It happened in front of his house on West 15th and Liberty Streets. Six months later, Black’s neighbor Bobby Fletcher is still trying to make sense of his death. "I miss the guy,” said Fletcher. “This apartment building, it's a big complex. He cut the grass, when the snow came, he helped shovel. You don't find people like him." Police have released surveillance video of...More >>
  • Erie Is Happy!

    Erie Is Happy!

    Thursday, July 24 2014 10:45 AM EDT2014-07-24 14:45:59 GMT
    A national survey rates Erie as unhappy but WE'RE happy as clams! Post why Erie makes you happy to this page and we'll share it with our visitors! VisitErie doesn't agree and neither do we!More >>
    A national survey rates Erie as unhappy but WE'RE happy as clams! Post why Erie makes you happy to this page and we'll share it with our visitors! VisitErie doesn't agree and neither do we!More >>
  • Small Object, Big Dangers: 9-Volt Battery Safety

    Small Object, Big Dangers: 9-Volt Battery Safety

    Friday, July 25 2014 12:29 PM EDT2014-07-25 16:29:21 GMT
    They're smaller than two inches in size, but 9-volt batteries can cause big problems if stored improperly.More >>
    They're smaller than two inches in size, but 9-volt batteries can cause big problems if stored improperly.More >>
  • County Executive Announces Interim OCY Director

    County Executive Announces Interim OCY Director

    Friday, July 25 2014 10:40 AM EDT2014-07-25 14:40:37 GMT
    Today, County Executive Kathy Dahlkemper appointed Lana Rees as Interim Director of the Erie County Office of Children and Youth.More >>
    Today, County Executive Kathy Dahlkemper appointed Lana Rees as Interim Director of the Erie County Office of Children and Youth.More >>
  • Teen Looks To Set Lake Erie Swim Record

    Teen Looks To Set Lake Erie Swim Record

    Thursday, July 24 2014 11:42 PM EDT2014-07-25 03:42:33 GMT
    It's a swim that will shatter a record all in the name of charity.More >>
    It's a swim that will shatter a record all in the name of charity.
    More >>
Powered by WorldNow
3514 State St. Erie, PA 16508
Newsroom: (814)454-8812
Toll Free: 1(800)454-8812
Business offices: (814)454-5201
WICU FCC Filing
WSEE FCC Filing
Share:
Share Stories
Submit your stories to our site!
Share Photos
Share your photos in our community galleries
Mobile:
Mobile Site
Be sure to stay constantly updated with the power of WICU12 and WSEE at your fingertips
Free Android App
Free iPhone App
Free iPad App
Storm Tracker App
Droid
iPhone
iPad
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WICU. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.
                   WICU/WSEE - 3514 State Street Erie, PA 16508 - (814) 454-5201 - info@wicu12.com