The judge in the trial of Mario McNeill has postponed the start of opening statements until Monday afternoon. The statements were expected to begin Monday morning, but just as a motions hearing was set to begin on Friday morning Judge James Ammons Jr. abruptly rescheduled the hearing for Monday morning.
McNeill is charged with raping and murdering 5-year-old Shaniya Davis of Fayetteville in November of 2009. Jury selection for his trial took nearly three weeks and finished on Thursday. The jurors were scheduled to report Monday morning, but now Ammons has asked that they report at 2 p.m. Monday for the beginning of opening statements.
The hearing on Friday morning was expected to cover a matter of evidence in the case. The prosecution would like to include in evidence information that McNeill led investigators to Shaniya's body. The defense would like to exclude that information from the trial.
Brandon is a North Carolina native and UNC alum who lives in Fayetteville, and covers Cumberland County and the Sandhills. Returning to North Carolina to work as a journalist is a dream come true for Brandon.More>>