RUSSELL COUNTY, Ala. (WRBL) – In Russell County day four of a murder trial continues. Jaquandre Bowen is on trial accused of shooting Keon Simmons to death at an unlicensed Phenix City nightclub in 2020.
Testimony continued Thursday as the defendants sister Kiera Sams took the stand.
When the murder warrant was issued for Bowen, he was at his sisters home. There a black bag with what police say had the murder weapon in it was also in the home. Along with $52,000 cash and 5 pounds of marijuana.
In a self written and signed statement to law enforcement Kiera Sams stated the bag was owned by her brother, Bowen. Sams husband also wrote a signed statement, claiming the marijuana and cash was his but the black bag belonged to Bowen. Sams state she had no knowledge of the marijuana and cash was inside the home that she lived in.
In court testimony Thursday, Sams stated she did what she was told and was coerced by police into making the statement.
The lead investigator in the case, Todd Ledbetter and investigator Jose Silva both with the Phenix City Police Department also took the stand.
Surveillance video obtained by Phenix city police shows, Bowden and three others fleeing the scene.
Court testimony revealed the gun used to kill the victim, Simmons, was registered to Bowen. The shell casings at the scene and bullets found in the victims body all match the same gun, a taurus millennium g2 pistol.
The defendants father has been removed from the courtroom for the duration of the trial. During a lunch break Thursday he posted to social media in what the state says was a threat to witnesses.
There are no cameras or cell phones allowed inside of the Russell County Courtroom.
The trial will resume Friday morning at 9 a.m.