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Defense seeks to exclude testimony from eyewitness in murder case

Defense seeks to exclude testimony from eyewitness in murder case

Xavier R. Jones

Xavier R. Jones

CROWN POINT — A man charged in a 2015 homicide will have to wait until next week to learn if a judge will grant his motion to exclude testimony from a woman at the center of his case.

Xavier R. Jones, 30, is accused of kicking his way into an apartment in the 500 block of South Vermillion Place in Gary on April 4, 2015, and fatally shooting Juble Hairston Jr.

Hairston was the boyfriend of a woman Jones once dated, according to Lake Criminal Court records.

Jones was charged in 2015 with murder and residential entry, but he remained at large until he surrendered himself to police in March 2021.

The woman initially did not name Jones as the man who broke into her apartment carrying a gun, court records show. 

Join Tristan DeFord, Jami Rieck, and Nancy Zakutanksky on a shift working for Superior Ambulance in Merrillville.

The woman told police she pushed the man, he pushed her back and she fled the apartment. 

During another interview with police seven days later, the woman named Jones as the suspect and picked his image out of a photo lineup, records state.

Jones' attorney, Scott King, said the woman failed to appear for a deposition and refused to cooperate with prosecutors in scheduling a deposition. As a result, he asked Judge Natalie Bokota to bar the woman from testifying against Jones at trial, according to court filings.

Lake County Deputy Prosecutor Douglas Shaw asked Bokota for another week to attempt to gain the woman's cooperation.

King said the request came as a surprise, given his previous discussions with Shaw.

Exclusion of the woman's testimony could hamper the state's case, because no other eyewitnesses were listed in charging documents.

Bokota granted Shaw's request and scheduled Jones' next hearing for Aug. 4.


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