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bhetzler / Byron Hetzler, The Southern 

Murphyboro's Corbin Guthman pops up a pitch against Dundee-Crown in the fourth inning at Itchy Jones Stadium on Monday in Carbondale.


Carbondale
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John Ingram testifies for state on Day 6 of trial in 2016 fatal Carbondale shooting; forensic evidence disputed

CARBONDALE — The start of Week 2 in the murder trial against a Cape Girardeau man brought forth a man formally charged in the case and conflicting forensic scientist testimony.

Tyler

Travis Tyler, 23, is charged with first-degree murder, aggravated battery with a firearm and aggravated discharge of a firearm. The charges stem from a March 27, 2016, shooting, which took place during a house party at 402 W. Walnut St.

Tim Beaty, 41, was home in his apartment next door at 334 W. Walnut St. when he was killed by a stray bullet from the shooting. He was a well-known drummer in the Carbondale music scene, who played in several rock and punk bands.

Nehemiah Greenlee, 26, also suffered a non-fatal gunshot wound and was taken to the hospital that night.

On Monday, the state started its day by calling John Ingram, 23, of Cape Girardeau. On March 16, he pleaded guilty to aggravated discharge of a firearm in this incident, and said he cut a deal to testify for the state in exchange for a more favorable sentence.

Ingram

Appearing in a black and white jumpsuit and handcuffs, Ingram told a similar story that many have told throughout the case. There was an event at Hangar 9 and after the bar, several individuals went to 402 W. Walnut St. The house was filled with people, a fight broke out, and then shots were fired into the floor.

After the shots were fired, Ingram said he went into a bedroom for safety. After the commotion cleared, he said he exited the room and ran out of the front door. On his way out, he said there four people by the front door and one of those people had a revolver.

Defense attorneys for Tyler, T.J. Hunsaker and T.J. Matthes of the Rosenblum, Schwarz and Fry Law Firm in St. Louis, said during opening statements that an altercation occurred at the front door between the defendant, Greenlee, and a man named Anthony Jones.

Hunsaker said Greenlee blocked the front door, making it impossible for Tyler to leave and eventually brandished a revolver. As Tyler made his way out of the door, Hunsaker said the evidence will show Greenlee fired his weapon first at Tyler. This is when the defendant turned and returned fire on Greenlee, acting in self-defense.

During Ingram’s testimony, after he ran out of the front door and made it across the street, more shots took place. He said this is when he turned and fired a 9mm gun, saying he thought there could have been a threat behind him. He said he fired a couple shots toward 402 W. Walnut St., and then some in the air.

After the shooting stopped, he ran to a vehicle that wasn’t his because it was borrowed during the party. While running, Ingram testified he saw Tyler with a gun in his hand.

When he returned to Cape Girardeau that night, he said he tossed his gun off a bridge because he was scared.

On cross-examination by Matthes, Ingram said he became scared on the night in question because he saw the man with the revolver at the door. When he heard the shots, he said he felt shooting was the right thing to do. He testified that he saw a man on the porch with a gun, but doesn’t remember if he fired it or not.

During Matthes' line of questioning, it was revealed there is a nine-year prison sentence on the table for Ingram instead of the original murder charges. Matthes said Ingram may only have to serve seven and a half years in total, and he’s already been in jail for two years.

Matthes questioned Ingram, asking him if he’s only saying he didn’t see a person shooting from the porch because he’s worried the state would revoke its deal.

Ingram said he would do anything to get out of jail, but that’s not why he said it.

Conflicting forensics

As the state’s final witness, Assistant State’s Attorney Casey Bloodworth called Angela Horn, an Illinois State Police forensic scientist.

She was called upon to testify about a bullet found at St. Xavier Catholic Church, 303 S. Poplar St. Horn said the bullet was a .38-caliber that belongs to a class of different bullets. She said it would have been fired from a 9mm or a .38 special revolver.

The issue of skid marks or slippage came up when describing a bullet. She said rifling marks formed on the bearing surface of bullets as they enter the rifling of the barrel before rotation of the bullet starts. Skid marks are typically produced by revolvers and have the appearance of widening of the land impressions at their beginning point.

Horn said the area where skid marks would normally be found was heavily damaged, so she didn’t look for it. She said the nose of the bullet was damaged and could have produced inconsistent results. Additionally, she said she didn’t feel the need for a second opinion.

She said Monday she has fired revolvers without skid marks and semi-automatic weapons resulting in skid marks.

The state rested after Horn’s testimony, opening the door for the defense to call its own forensic scientist.

Hunsaker and Matthes called Christopher Robinson, a private forensic consultant.

Before questions got started, Robinson testified he was paid about $6,500 for testimony.

He said the bullet that struck the church was a .38-caliber bullet, which is typically fired from a .38 special revolver or a .357 Magnum revolver.

Robinson said it was no doubt a revolver that fired the bullet and he was able to identify skid marks on the bullet despite the damage. Additionally, he claimed it was not possible for the bullet to be fired by a 9mm.

He added skid marks only appear when fired by a revolver, not by a semi-automatic weapon.

On cross-examination by Bloodworth, he continually called into question the credibility of the witness by bringing up several times Robinson was reprimanded or fired.

Those incidents involved spending thousands of dollars without authorization, allowing unauthorized access to a lab, and not following protocol.

Additionally, he challenged the witness didn’t use a powerful enough microscope when examining the bullet and how he could even begin to tell there were skid marks due to the amount of damage from the bullet.

Robinson maintained the bullet was not damaged enough for him to not identify such marks. Also, he said the weight of the bullet was the determining factor.

The defense will continue presenting testimony Tuesday, but it is expected to rest before the day is over. Once that happens, the jury will begin deliberations.


bhetzler / Byron Hetzler, The Southern 

A bald eagle perches in a tree in Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge on Monday afternoon.


Washington
AP
US, allies band together to expel Russians over spy case (copy)

WASHINGTON — From Washington to Warsaw, Western nations banded together Monday to expel more than 100 Russian diplomats they accused of being spies, punishing Moscow for its alleged poisoning of an ex-intelligence officer in Britain.

President Donald Trump, under constant political heat for his reluctance to challenge Russia, ordered 60 of its diplomats out of the U.S. — all of them spies, the White House said. The United States called it the largest expulsion of Russian spies in American history, and also shuttered Russia's consulate in Seattle, deeming it a counterintelligence threat.

All told, at least 21 countries have ousted more than 135 Russians, including 23 kicked out earlier by the U.K.

"Together we have sent a message that we will not tolerate Russia's continued attempts to flout international law and undermine our values," British Prime Minister Theresa May told Parliament.

The American moves illustrated an increased willingness by Trump's administration to push back on the Kremlin, even as the president himself steadfastly avoids challenging Russian President Vladimir Putin personally or directly. Less than a week ago, Trump congratulated Putin for his re-election but didn't raise the March 4 spy poisoning, Russia's alleged election-meddling in the U.S. or its own tainted voting process, prompting dismayed critiques even from Trump's fellow Republicans.

In a choreographed show of trans-Atlantic unity, the U.S. and European allies carefully timed their announcements for maximum effect.

Within a few hours, at least 16 European Union nations expelled Russians, with more likely to follow. Germany, Poland and France each said it planned to boot four Russian diplomats, the Czech Republic and Lithuania ousted three, and Italy and Australia expelled two. Canada also took action, kicking out four Russians and denying three who have applied to enter the country.

The list included nations in Russia's backyard that have perhaps the most at stake. Ukraine, a non-EU country with its own conflicts with Moscow, was expelling 13 Russians. All three Baltic states said they would make diplomats leave.

Almost all of the countries said publicly that those being expelled actually were Russians intelligence operatives working under diplomatic cover.

Moscow threatened retaliation of the tit-for-tat variety, suggesting it would kick out an equal number of foreign diplomats. Russia's Embassy in Washington responded to the Seattle consulate closure by asking its Twitter followers to "vote" which U.S. consulate should be shuttered in turn: St. Petersburg, Yekaterinburg or Vladivostok.

"This is an attempt on the lives of Russian citizens on the territory of Great Britain," Russia's Foreign Ministry said. "It goes without saying that this unfriendly move by this group of countries will not go unnoticed."

Yet it was unclear whether the expulsions, which may be inconvenient for Moscow but don't take aim at its economy, would be enough to alter Putin's behavior.

"There is no actual deterrence and squeeze," said James Nixey, head of the Russia program at think-tank Chatham House. "There is, so far, no cyber-response, no financial response."

Still, the dueling allegations added to a serious escalation of tension and distrust between Russia and the West, intensified most recently by a bizarre poisoning this month that evoked the spy-vs.-spy rivalries of the Cold War.

Britain has accused Moscow of using the Soviet-developed nerve agent Novichok to poison Sergei Skripal, a former Russian military intelligence officer convicted of spying for the U.K., and his daughter, Yulia, on British soil. The two remain in critical condition and unconscious. The U.S., France and Germany have agreed it's highly likely Russia was responsible. Russia has denied responsibility, while accusing Britain of leading a global charge against it without proof.

The expulsions came with a chorus of condemnation for the Kremlin — for the poisoning, Russian spying and other Western grievances. Poland's Foreign Minister, Jacek Czaputowicz, called it "the right response to the unfriendly, aggressive actions of Russia." In the Czech Republic, where Russian officials have claimed the poison may have originated, Prime Minister Andrej Babis dismissed that allegation as "an utter lie."

And the United States warned of an "unacceptably high" number of Russian spies in the U.S., describing them as a national security threat. Among the 60 Russians expelled were a dozen posted to Russia's mission to the United Nations who senior U.S. officials said were engaged in "aggressive collection" of intelligence on American soil.

"When we see these espionage tactics that are taking place right here at the heart of the U.N., we can't have that," said Nikki Haley, Trump's envoy to the U.N.

In Washington, Russia's ambassador was summoned early in the morning and told his diplomats have one week to leave the U.S. and must evacuate the Consulate General in Seattle by Monday. Located on the 25th floor of a large, downtown office building, the consulate is a particular counter-intelligence concern because of its close proximity to a U.S. submarine base and a Boeing Co. facility, said U.S. officials.

The officials said they estimated Russia had roughly 100 intelligence officials in the U.S., suggesting that dozens will remain even after the 60 are expelled. The officials weren't authorized to be identified by name and spoke on condition of anonymity.


Ingram


Tyler


Music
breaking top story
Ice Cube concert
SIU announces Fat Joe, Kid Capri will open for Ice Cube

CARBONDALE — Fat Joe and Kid Capri will join Ice Cube in concert at SIU Arena on April 28.

SIU Presents announced the opening acts Monday. The concert is intended to bring live entertainment back to the forefront of the university.

Ashley Wright, director of special events ticketing with SIU Presents, said Fat Joe has appeal for older and younger fans.

“Fat Joe is a relevant then-and-now artist, which makes him a great tie-in to Ice Cube. He had hits when Ice Cube was making hits, and he has hits now that make him appeal more to students,” Wright said.

Born Joseph Antonio Cartagena, Fat Joe was raised in the South Bronx. The Latino rapper began his musical career as a member of hip hop group Diggin' in the Crates Crew (D.I.T.C.). His 1993 full-length debut, “Represent,” featured the hit single “Flow Joe.”

His single “Lean Back” with Terror Squad topped the Billboard Hot 100 for three weeks.

Kid Capri, also known as David Anthony Love, is a DJ, rapper, TV personality and record executive. He DJ’d seven seasons for “Def Comedy Jam” and has been a lead judge on Smirnoff’s “Master of the Mix” reality television competition.

Tickets are on sale now and available online at siu.edu, by phone at 877-725-8547 or in person at the McLeod Theater box office.