Thursday, June 14, 2012

Curry's Office Stung By Murder Acquittal

Family members of Tracie Shannon and her 9-month old daughter, both of whom were found murdered in their apartment in Lawrence after a fire there that authorities determined had been intentionally set, have to be shocked and disappointed at yesterday's acquittal of Shannon's boyfriend, Joshwa Carlisle. Prosecutors in Marion Co. Prosecutor Terry Curry's office had charged Carlisle, claiming that he had smothered Shannon and then poured an accelerant on her sleeping baby before setting her on fire because he was angry about having to pay child support to Shannon.

Carlisle's DNA had been found on Shannon's body. Prosecutors theorized that Carlisle had murdered Shannon after having sex with her. Earlier this year, Marion Co. Superior Court Judge Mark Stoner had ordered Carlisle released from jail and delayed his trial after prosecutors failed to timely turn over DNA evidence it intended to offer at trial to his defense attorney. Carlisle waived his right to have a jury decide his fate, and Judge Stone acquitted him yesterday. An expert for the defense testified that the DNA found on Shannon's body was at least six hours old and a maximum of 72 hours. Carlisle's defense attorney argued that the DNA evidence did not place his client at the apartment on the day she was killed. WRTV has these comments of Judge Stoner on his ruling and the family in reaction to the acquittal:

Judge Mark Stoner said there is a special place in hell reserved for the person who killed Shannon and the child, but that based on the evidence, he could not find Carlisle guilty.
The victims' family members were devastated. At least one passed out right after the verdict was read, and others were so overwhelmed that they had to be helped to elevators.
"We were just stunned. We're hurt," said Joanna Humphries, Shannon's aunt. "We're sad. We're in disbelief now."
Because prosecutors have no other suspects in the killing of Shannon and her daughter, nobody will likely be punished for their murders. Carlisle's attorneys told reporters that he hoped to return to duty in the National Guard. He had lost his job at Best Buy a short time before learning that he would have to pay child support to Shannon after a paternity test determined that he was the father of her daughter according to prosecutors.

1 comment:

mphill109 said...

While Im no Curry fan, cases like these are extremely hard to prove in court...even for the best prosecutors. It is a shame though...