Lawyer: Co-defendant in North 25 murder case was previously shot, suffers depression
Alleged killer Zion Williams has personal experience with handling weapons and getting shot.
Williams, who was arrested last week in connection with the Oct. 6 murder of 58-year-old Wilma Rutledge, was adjudicated last year for being a juvenile in unlawful possession of a handgun and was hospitalized earlier this year after surviving gunshot wounds, according to statements made in court.
Defense attorney Robin Lord, who is representing Williams, said her client was shot several months ago and “almost died from that injury.”
Prosecutors say surveillance video captured Williams pointing a handgun in the direction of the victim who died in the Oct. 6 shooting at the North 25 housing complex. In addition to killing Rutledge, a local grandmother, the wild afternoon shooting also injured a 14-year-old girl.
Williams questions whether police obtained any surveillance video from when he was shot in May, according to Lord, who said Williams has a long road to recovery and suffers from depression. She also said Williams has a steady work history with the Coryell Tree Service and said he graduated early from the Rubino Academy last June.
Williams is one of four defendants arrested this month in connection with the Oct. 6 shooting. The other co-defendants in the homicide case are Rahein McInnis, 32, of Trenton, and two 16-year-old teens whom prosecutors have not identified because they are underage.
Mercer County Assistant Prosecutor Heather Hadley in court on Friday successfully argued for Williams to be placed on pretrial detention, mentioning Williams’ juvenile and adult criminal history and the fact that he faces life in prison if convicted of murder.
Police have charged Williams with accomplice liability counts of murder, attempted murder, possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, unlawful possession of a weapon and endangering the welfare of a child. Trenton Police Detective Scott Peterson of the Mercer County Homicide Task Force arrested him Oct. 20.
At the court hearing on Friday, Mercer County Superior Court Judge Robert Billmeier signed the order placing Williams on pretrial detention.
Williams through his attorney asked the court why was he being detained without bail when he could have been released on electronically monitored home detention.
Billmeier said Williams has a right to file a timely appeal on the detention order.