Butler convicted of second-degree murder

Published: Thursday, November 21, 2013 at 18:45 PM.

Sims called just one witness as Butler did not take the stand.

Crime scene investigator Jay Smith, Jr. was asked by Sims if he had checked the sliding glass door of Butler’s apartment for fingerprints.

Smith said that he did not dust for prints because he didn’t know it was an issue in the case and he was not instructed to do so.

Who did and did not open the sliding glass patio door that Gant entered into Butler’s apartment was a central issue in the trial.

A bloody boot print found on the patio, where Gant lay bleeding when law enforcement arrived on the scene, was compared to witness Kenneth Dunham, but not the victim or defendant.

Sims’ closing statements relied heavily on Smith’s testimony, suggesting that responding officers hadn’t explored all avenues.

“This was terrible police work,” said Sims in reference to police not pursuing fingerprints or the boot print further. “Was there another witness in this case? Was there a neighborhood canvas?



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