10.19.2012

Let's Not Forget: Still seeking justice for seven-year-old Aiyana Stanley Jones

DETROIT (FinalCall.com) - Wayne County Circuit Court Judge Cynthia Gray Hathaway delayed ruling on a motion to dismiss charges against Detroit Officer Joseph Weekley, Jr., killer of Aiyana Stanley Jones, 7, during a hearing Sept. 28, until after the child’s father is tried for first-degree murder in another case.

Off. Weekley faces involuntary manslaughter and firearms charges for shooting Aiyana through the head after a Detroit police Special Response Team conducted a military-style raid on her home in a poor east side Detroit neighborhood March 16, 2010. A&E’s “First 48” was filming the midnight raid for national television.

Instead, worldwide media told the story of a little girl’s killing by Detroit police. Off. Weekley is free on personal bond, while Aiyana’s father Charles Jones and Chauncey Owens have been remanded without bail, charged with killing 17-year-old Je’Rean Blake two days before the little girl’s death. Wayne County Assistant Prosecutor David Moran is prosecuting both Off. Weekley and Mr. Jones. “It took him a few seconds to murder my baby in front of my eyes,” the child’s grandmother Mertilla Jones wept outside the court after the motion hearing. “But two and a half years later, they haven’t tried him yet. Instead they’re going after her father who’s still grieving for his child.”

 In a civil case brought against him by Aiyana’s family members, Off. Weekley’s attorneys are trying to delay that trial until after the Jones/Owens’ criminal trial. On Oct. 11, at 9 a.m. a Wayne County Circuit Court judge will hold a hearing on a defense motion for a stay of proceedings. A status conference is set for Oct. 26, with the civil trial scheduled for Nov. 11. The judge earlier denied a defense motion for a “protective order” to seal records in the case, including depositions of the officers involved in the raid. She ruled that those depositions should go forward on the completion of the State Police investigation. It is unclear from court records, however, if the officers have been deposed. Defense attorneys from the firm of Plunkett & Cooney, paid by the city of Detroit, have however deposed many of those in her family, according to Mertilla Jones. [Read Full Story]


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