WILKES-BARRE — Luzerne County Judge Michael Vough ruled on Friday that statements a homicide suspect made to police will be permitted at his trial next week, but prosecutors cannot mention any prior criminal activity.
Vough made the rulings after hearings on requests made by defense attorneys and prosecutors in the case of George Lee Barnes, 23, who is charged with killing Daron Rhashan Trollinger, 26, at an Edwardsville apartment complex on May 16.
Barnes allegedly shot Trollinger during a marijuana sale inside an apartment building at Eagle Ridge on Beverly Drive. Federal marshals captured Barnes in Philadelphia on May 25.
Barnes suffered a gunshot wound to the chest and a grazing wound on his forehead.
His trial is scheduled to begin Monday morning with jury selection.
Barnes’ attorneys, John Pike and Paul Galante, were seeking to have evidence thrown out, including statements Barnes made to police while at a hospital being treated for the gunshot wounds. Barnes agreed to several search warrants and detailed the events that led to the shooting, police said.
Barnes told police 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 said, he 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.
Vough ruled that he believed Barnes consented to the searches freely and voluntarily and that Barnes was able to speak with hospital staff and police in a coherent manner.