11/17/11 — Murder trial hits phones, bullets

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Murder trial hits phones, bullets

By Gary Popp
Published in News on November 17, 2011 1:46 PM

Windsor Ingram

Eight bullet casings collected from the front yard of a Mount Olive home and eight grams of crack-cocaine found in a dead man's hand were presented as evidence Wednesday in the trial of Windsor Ingram.

The 24-year-old Goldsboro man could be sentenced to life in prison if found guilty of fatally shooting Tamorris Njai Raynor, 34, in front of his home in September 2007.

The case first went to trial in Wayne County Superior Court in January, but the jury could not break an 11-1 stalemate and the case resulted in a mistrial.

Ingram has spent virtually all of his early 20s waiting in the Wayne County Jail -- a span of 1,526 days -- for a judge and jury to decide his fate. He is currently the inmate with the longest active time spent in the detention facility. He turned himself in to Mount Olive police several days after the shooting.

Assistant District Attorney Jennifer Bedford continued to present the state's case Wednesday to the jury of eight women and four men.

Mrs. Bedford spent part of the day establishing a history of phone calls on the land line at the home of Raynor's late grandmother, a cell phone used by Ingram and the phones at the Wayne County Detention Center that document calls made by Ingram. The purpose of establishing the existence of the calls was not made immediately clear by the prosecution.

She also called witnesses to verify the ownership of a Lincoln LS by the defendant's sister. Several accounts from neighbors indicated that a Lincoln LS was seen near Raynor's home, at 105 S. Kornegay St., where the shooting occurred.

During Wednesday's morning session, defense attorney Charles Gurley and Mrs. Bedford took turns questioning Capt. Tommy Brown, of the Mount Olive police, concerning the photo line ups shown to the prosecution's primary witness, a 15-year-old girl who is Raynor's cousin.

The juvenile, who was 11 years old at the time of the shooting, shared a home with Raynor. She said she saw a man, fitting Ingram's description, gun down her cousin.

She was shown three photo lineups by Mount Olive police in the days immediately following the shooting. Ingram's photo was placed in the third line up. He was the only person the girl positively identified.

But during the January trial and on again on Tuesday, the girl said she could not confirm that Ingram was the man she saw firing the shots.

Later in the day, Bedford called a forensic scientist from the SBI to testify that the off-white, hard material found in a plastic bag, which investigators said they found after prying open Raynor's right hand, was crack cocaine.

A second SBI forensic scientist, with expertise in firearms and ballistics, confirmed that the eight cartridge casings, which were taken from the crime scene, were all fired from the same 9-mm Ruger handgun.

Gurley did not say whether Ingram will take the witness stand.

Ingram has maintained throughout the trials that he did not shoot Raynor.