A Cold Case Heats Up at Trial...
The trial for the 2003 murder of a mentally challenged Hawthorne man, continued at the Alachua County Courthouse today.
When Wayne Hutchinson was brutally stabbed and choked to death there was a huge investigation launched.
However, no arrests were made and the trail eventually went cold.
But the evidence gathered and interviews done nearly 7 years ago are still at the center of arguments from both sides.
In opening statements for the First Degree Murder trial of Eddie Gillins Jr. and William Bascomb, the State Attorney's office said that Gillins and Bascomb are and have always been the only viable suspects.
Ralph Grabel said new information provided by old witnesses led to the arrest and trial of the defendants. He also warned the jury that at the center of this case is crack cocaine, which means that many of the witnesses have been mixed up in the dark world of drugs.
But the defense said the only evidence that in any way links the defendants to the case, is questionable testimonies from people who have continually changed their stories and are being helped by the state.
Defense attorney for Eddie Gillins, Michael Finesilver, said "Again, the physical evidence and the science have not changed at all since the beginning of this case, only the witnesses have changed their stories."
The Prosecution called witnesses to the stand to establish the circumstances surrounding the murder, the discovery of the body and autopsy results, along with the character of the victim.
The Defense also questioned the witnesses and continued bringing up the surprising lack of blood evidence in the case.
Defense attorney for William Bascomb, Howard Lidsky, said, "The second thing is the remarkable lack of blood anywhere in the crime scene."
The victim's family and supporters for the Defendants sat silently through the trial. But when the gruesome crime scene photos were shown, some members of the Hutchinson family had to leave the courtroom.
As the trial continues and the evidence is brought before the 12 person jury, many questions will be answered. But with a case that's nearly 7 years old, both sides and the families that hang in the balance, may not find the answer they're looking for.
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