A judge ruled Monday that the five men accused of murdering the 47-year-old brother of prominent metro Atlanta Pastor Wiley Jackson will be tried separately.
The trial began Monday with attorneys for five defendants arguing various motions but by the end of the day Fulton County Superior Court Judge Ural Glanville had severed the cases.
The first of the to be tried for the May 3 ,2012, death of Jerrick Jackson will be 18-year-old Demetrius Morgan. Jury selection is expected to begin Wednesday.
The other four accused of murder are Geno Lewis, now 20; Felton Lovejoy, 19; and Alejandro Pitts and Montravious Bradley, both 18. They are charged with participation in criminal street gang activity, murder, armed robbery, aggravated assault and false imprisonment
Jackson and his fiancee were getting out of his Porsche SUV around 1 a.m. when they were approached by several armed men, who ordered them to go inside the Lowe Street house. Police said Jackson was shot multiple times when he tried to stop them from going into an upstairs room where his fiancee’s daughter was.
At the time, police said they believed the five were part of a robbing crew that was preying on people in Atlanta, Decatur and DeKalb County.
Prosecutors said the five took bank debit cards, credit cards and blank checks and that eventually led police to identify when they tried to use some of the cards. Surveillance cameras recorded some of them trying to use the cars.
But it took several months before all five were in custody.