Thousands of protesters shut down Hall Rd. in Sterling Heights June 6, 2020 after the police murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis, MN, showing it is possible to mobilize against racism in Macomb County. Are such mobilizations needed to support Terry Wilson and others whose lives have been taken by Macomb Co. courts and police?
TERRY WILSON RE-TRIAL SET FOR FEB. 14, 2023 IN MACOMB COUNTY
Have issues of predominantly white juries, racist prosecutors been addressed before trial?
Family called earlier for change of venue
Wilson testified he was defending himself, but AP Jurji Fedorak told virtually all-white jury he “wanted to show how big of a man he is in his neighborhood.”
COA overturned Macomb County conviction of Reinaldo Jemison Sept. 15 citing defense failure to investigate and raise self-defense argument
By Ricardo Ferrell
With Editor Diane Bukowski
September 24, 2022
MOUNT CLEMENS, MI – The fight to get justice for Terry Lamont Wilson of Clinton Township has been going on for nearly a decade. Family, friends and other supporters say they want to see him get the new trial that was granted in 2019 by Macomb Co. Circuit Court Judge Jennifer Faunce, after a 2014 trial was shown to be tainted by racism.
But they want a fair trial in front of a jury representative of the population of Macomb County, and a prosecutor who does not make racially biased statements at trial. They say Macomb County AP Jurji Fedorak is clearly planning to sabotage the case.
Court records show that Judge Faunce has set a trial date in the case for February 14, 2023.
“It’s been three long agonizing years waiting for Terry to get another trial and chance to hopefully prove that he never planned to kill William Clark, and that he only shot Willie because he feared him,” Corey Kennedy, a longtime friend of both Clark and Wilson, told VOD. He said he believes the jury got it wrong and his friend should have have been convicted of manslaughter, at most.
The U.S. Census reported in 2021 that 23.5% of Macomb County residents are from communities of color, including with 76% listed as white.
A jury of 11 whites and one Asian convicted Wilson of first-degree murder and felony firearm possession in Clark’s 2014 killing. Judge Faunce overturned the conviction in 2018 on appeal, after an evidentiary hearing on his motion for relief from judgement revealed that jury foreman Harvey Labadie called Wilson a “n—–r” during deliberations. Faunce did not address the issue of the racially exclusionary jury. Most mainstream media coverage has focused solely on Labadie’s remarks.
According to a legal brief filed by appellate attorney Wade Fink, a juror believed to be Labadie also said “he believed defendant was guilty because he was ‘ghetto’ and ‘black’ and (murder) is what (ghetto black people) do, and this is the way they are.”
During Wilson’s first trial, Assistant Prosecutor Jurji Fedorak reinforced that depiction, telling the jury that Wilson “wanted to show how big of a man he is in his neighborhood.”
During a pre-trial hearing held August 16, AP Fedorak reneged on a plea offer that was originally discussed on July 15th with Gary Kennedy, the appointed appellate attorney now representing Wilson. The offer had a reported deadline of August 16th. If Wilson declined a plea to the lesser charge of second-degree, with a supposed cap of 25 years, he said the Macomb County Prosecutor’s Office will take him to trial.
Homicide detective Gilbert, who investigated the death of William Clark, was present in the courtroom August 16. Clark’s brother DeAnthony Rodgers was also present in addition to Wilson’s mother LaShanda Kelley, and brother. Vincent Collura, a former Clinton Township Police Officer who handled the original case, who is now assistant prosecutor, sat next to Fedorak.
Fedorak asked that the proceedings be adjourned until August 22, to give Wilson an alleged “last chance” to think about the 25 year offer. But an earlier upon offer given to Wilson’s previous attorney Robbie Lang consisted of 18 years and the mandatory two years for the firearm.
Lang, from the Law Offices of Michael J. Smith & Associates, wrote regarding that offer, “…We have also discussed with the prosecutor, what at this time, is the lowest possible sentence cap that would be approved by the mother of the victim and the higher authorities in the prosecutor’s office that controls these negotiations, being 18 years, plus the two years on the Felony Firearm… if in fact, this type of plea bargain and sentence cap can be agreed upon by all sides, it is our strong recommendation that you accept it…”
COA reverses Macomb Co. Judge Joseph Toia’s ruling in case of Reinaldo Jemison, remands for new trial including self-defense investigation
During the first trial, Judge Faunce herself included a possible charge of manslaughter for the jury’s consideration. It is not known if Wilson’s defense attorney at trial asked for that charge to be considered.
On Sept. 15, 2022, the Michigan Court of Appeals reversed the 2019 second-degree murder conviction of Reinaldo Jamison, citing defense counsel’s failure to properly investigate or pursue a self-defense claim. The COA said Macomb County Judge Joseph Toia erred when it accepted the “patently incredible testimony” of defense counsel David Cripps regarding evidence that Jemison had raised the self-defense claim to him from the beginning.
“Defense counsel was ineffective when he failed to properly investigate or pursue a self-defense claim,” the court said. “The trial court clearly erred when it accepted defense counsel’s patently incredible testimony on this issue. Moreover, defense counsel’s deficient performance in this regard is sufficient to undermine confidence in the outcome of defendant’s trial. We therefore vacate his convictions and sentences, and remand for a new trial. We do not retain jurisdiction.” See: http://voiceofdetroit.net/wp-ontent/uploads/Warren-murder-conviction-reversed-by-the-state-Court-of-Appeals-–-Macomb-Daily.pdf.
COA ruling overturning conviction of Macomb Co. resident Reinaldo Jemison