Mertilla Jones Testifies Against Cop Charged in 7-Year-Old's Death

Tuesday, 11 Jun 2013 12:15 PM

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In emotional testimony Monday that contradicted official police accounts, grandmother Mertilla Jones told a jury that Detroit Police Officer Joseph Weekley pointed a gun at her 7-year-old granddaughter's head and shot her during a raid.

Weekley is on trial for involuntary manslaughter in the death of Aiyana Stanley-Jones, who was killed when a Detroit Special Response Team burst into the home to arrest a murder suspect in 2010.

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"As soon as they came in, the gun was just pointed right there at (Aiyana’s) head," she testified in Wayne County Circuit Court. The trigger was pulled and Jones said she saw "the light leave out of her eyes," the Detroit Free Press reported.

A fellow member of the Special Response Team that night, Detroit Police Officer Larry Davis, said the accused told him that "someone grabbed his weapon, and it went off."

Weekley's attorney Steve Fishman brought up a previous statement by Jones — she said Weekley put the gun to Aiyana's head and pulled the trigger, by which she meant the gun was pointed down toward the couch at the girl's head — and wondered if the grandmother was a credible witness. He says Aiyana's death was a tragic accident, not manslaughter.

Fishman also questioned a video interview with police where Jones said "glass and shots just rang through the window." She didn't remember saying that way, she responded.

That’s what I figured all of them was there to do — to murder. They came to kill, and they killed a 7-year-old,” said Jones, according to the Detroit News.

Police raided the home looking for Chauncey Owens, a suspect in the murder of 17-year-old Jer'ean Blake Nobles two days prior, and Jones' son Charles Jones. Charles Jones, Aiyana’s father, is accused of providing the gun used to kill Blake and faces first-degree murder charges in the teen’s death, along with Owens.

Police conducting surveillance prior to the raid saw Owens going through her door. He was in the upstairs flat during the raid, the Detroit Free Press reported.

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Related stories:

ACLU: Detroit Police ‘Kidnapping’ Homeless

Michigan Gov. Snyder: Good Start to Fixing Detroit Woes

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