UPDATE (5:45 p.m.) Around 5:30 p.m., Judge Jennifer Bailey released the jury for the day in the Joshua Phillips trial. The jury will meet again for deliberation starting at 9 a.m. Friday.
UPDATE (3:13 p.m.) Closing arguments are now over. Judge Bailey is giving final directions to the jury. The jury will take a 15-minute break and will meet to discuss the case starting at 3:30 p.m. The bailiff will collect all of the juror’s cell phones while they deliberate.
Judge Bailey says that one of the original jurors has been excused. An alternate juror will take their place.
UPDATE (2:59 p.m.) Don Morris is presenting the state’s rebuttal.
UPDATE (1:52 p.m.) The defense is now presenting its closing argument.
UPDATE (1:25 p.m.) Judge Bailey has read instructions to the jury, and now the state will present its closing argument.
UPDATE (9:39 a.m.) The state has rested. Dr. Mock was their final witness.
The defense called two witnesses on Wednesday.
The jury is taking a break while the prosecution and defense discuss jury instructions.
UPDATE (9:30 a.m.) The state called Dr. Allen Mock as its first witness on Thursday. He is the Chief Medical Examiner for the state of West Virginia. He conducted an examination of Patrolman Cassie Johnson’s body after her death.
CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — The trial for a man accused of killing a Charleston police officer continues at 9:00 a.m. on Thursday with another witness for the state. This is expected to be the final witness.
On Wednesday, Joshua Phillips told Judge Bailey that he would not take the stand in his own defense. The defense does not appear to be planning on calling any witnesses.
Opening arguments began on Monday in the trial of Joshua Phillips, and witnesses started taking the stand for the prosecution on Tuesday.
Also on Monday morning, the court chose 14 jurors, two of whom will be alternates.
Before the final selection was made from that group, the attorney for Joshua Phillips again made a motion for a change of venue, claiming he cannot get a fair trial due to the public’s familiarity with the case.
Judge Jennifer Bailey again denied that motion stating that it was not whether the jurors were aware of the case, but if they were able to remain impartial and render a verdict based on the evidence in court. Bailey says to make her decision, she used other cases from across the state where publicity and public knowledge and opinion have come into question of whether the defendant was able to receive a fair trial in the county where the case occurred.
Phillips is accused of shooting and killing CPD Patrolman Cassie Johnson in December 2020. Johnson was shot in the line of duty while responding to a parking complaint on Dec. 1, 2020, and died of her injuries on Dec. 3, 2020.
Phillips’ trial was previously scheduled to start back in March 2022, however, Judge Jennifer Bailey said at that time there were not enough jurors available to begin the trial. Judge Bailey also ruled that the case will remain in Kanawha County following a change of venue request from the defense.