COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) — More than two years after Devion Miley was gunned down in a Midtown Columbus, Zajaliq Riley is on trial facing murder charges.

Monday a jury was seated and opening statements were held. This case is being framed by prosecutors and the defense, alike, as a drug deal gone bad on May 8, 2021. It started with a transaction at a motel on Boxwood Place. It ended a couple of hours later with Miley being found near death outside a pita restaurant off Macon Road.

Riley and Detric Bush were originally charged in the murder in a shopping center off Macon Road.

Bush has taken a deal, leaving Riley and his criminal defense attorney Michael Garder to face a Muscogee County Superior Court jury alone.

Bush pleaded guilty to marijuana and firearms charges last month. He is expected to testify against Riley. He has not been sentenced but has been promised a deal that includes five years to serve.

Prosecutor Robin Anthony said that the evidence will show that Riley was the triggerman.

“Detric Bush will tell you they pulled up Boxwood got to Macon Zajaliq Riley said to Devion Miley, ‘Get out.’ And reached over his shoulder and as Devion was getting out, shot him in the back,” Anthony told the jury, demonstrating how she believes it went down.

Garner said the Efficiency Lodge where the victim was staying was a haven from drug deals — and drug dealers.

“One of the things that they never found out, according to the police is where this individual was shot,” Garner said. “They know he was not shot in that Parking lot in front of the Pita restaurant because there was no blood. Not enough blood for him to have been shot there.”

Monday’s proceedings were held in the Comer Avenue jury center. The trial will move to the Government Center in front of Judge Gil McBride beginning at 9 Tuesday morning.