2009-04-30 / Local & State

Pa. Murder Trial Delayed By No-Show Of 5 Witnesses

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - The trial of five men charged in the death of a Philadelphia mother killed by a stray bullet two years ago is on hold after five witnesses failed to appear to testify.

Police say two groups of men started shooting at each other in southwest Philadelphia on March 25, 2007. Twenty-eightyear old Jovonne Stelly was struck in the head as she tried to get her children inside her home. After her death, more than 100 people attended a rally calling for an end to violence.

Assistant District Attorney Edward Cameron says he does not believe the witnesses have been threatened but they may hope the case will go away if they are not found. A defense attorney says he believes they are concerned about their safety.

Police say four of the defendants lived on the same block as the victim, and the witnesses are related to either the victim or the defendants.

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