George Lee Barnes, 23, taken from Luzerne County Court in wheelchair due to medical emergency

Last updated: September 12. 2013 11:23PM - 3123 Views
SHEENA DELAZIO sdelazio@timesleader.com

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WILKES-BARRE — A Luzerne County judge on Thursday heard testimony in the homicide case of George Lee Barnes as his attorneys tried to have evidence in the case thrown out.

Judge Michael Vough apparently will have to wait until next week to hear the rest of the testimony, as Barnes suffered a medical emergency during the court proceeding and had to be taken to a hospital.

Barnes, 23, is charged with killing Daron Rhashan Trollinger, 26, at an Edwardsville apartment complex on May 16.

Barnes shot Trollinger during a marijuana sale inside an apartment building at Eagle Ridge on Beverly Drive, according to state police at Wyoming. Barnes was captured by U.S. Marshals in Philadelphia on May 25.

Assistant district attorneys Molly Hanlon Mirabito and Brian Coleman were in the process of calling witnesses to testify that Barnes had agreed to allow police to obtain DNA and other evidence when Barnes became ill.

The courtroom was emptied and, within minutes, paramedics took Barnes from the courtroom in a wheelchair.

Vough said the hearing will resume next week, depending on Barnes’ health.

Barnes’ attorneys, John Pike and Paul Galante, were seeking to have the evidence thrown out, and prosecutors called Edwardsville police officer Charles Benson, state Trooper Stephen Polishan and former state Trooper Richard Weinstock.

The officers testified they were notified of the shooting and were told to go to Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center to ensure the safety of a gunshot victim — Barnes. He had suffered a gunshot wound to the chest and a bullet grazed his forehead.

The officers testified Barnes agreed to search warrants, appeared to be coherent and was speaking with police.

Weinstock testified Barnes told him he went to visit a friend at the apartment complex, but his friend was not home so he was in the process of leaving when a Hispanic male pointed a gun at his head. Barnes said there was a struggle and the gun went off a number of times, so he fled.

While running, Barnes became short of breath and realized he had been shot. He went to his nearby home and his girlfriend called 911.

Barnes said the man with whom he struggled was someone familiar, but that he could not remember the man’s name, according to testimony. Barnes said he could identify the man’s clothing and some tattoos, and recognized him to be in the “Philly mafia” street gang.

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