Wayne Circuit Judge Vernon Miniard, Jr. has denied a motion to dismiss murder charges against Jimmy Massengale, following a hearing that was held June 27.
Massengale is charged with murder in connection with the May 2012 shooting death of Roger Dean.
Defense attorneys had filed a motion requesting that the charges against Massengale be dropped, noting that he was immune from prosecution because he was justified in the use of force.
Miniard heard testimony during the hearing last month, then issued his ruling on Tuesday, July 9.
“In this case, when broadly evaluating the evidence, the Commonwealth has met its burden of going forward by showing that there is an objectively reasonable basis to conclude that the defendant’s use of force was not lawful,” the ruling stated.
It also states that the evidence indicates the victim had not made an unlawful entry to Massengale’s residence. It cites testimony that the homeowner invited Dean to the residence.
The ruling refers to an argument that occurred in front of the residence and the testimony that the victim had left the property after the defendant pulled out a knife. It also refers to testimony given about Massengale getting a gun and making the statement regarding shooting Dean if he returned.
When the victim returned to the residence, Massengale stated that the victim “cursed at him and took steps toward him.”
The ruling notes that there is no evidence to support this statement. No one else indicated that Dean had a weapon or made any advance toward the defendant.
Massengale is also charged with three counts of wanton endangerment first degree and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.
The defense also filed a motion to reduce bond for Massengale, which was reviewed during a hearing held on Thursday, July 11 in Wayne Circuit Court. Following the hearing, Miniard denied the request.
County employees will receive a cost-of-living pay increase, following action taken by fiscal court during its meeting on Thursday, July 11.
Magistrates approved a .21 cents per hour pay increase for all county employees.
The raise, which was included in the county’s budget for the next fiscal year, will take effect with the next pay period.
A trial date has been set for a former Wayne County assistant attorney charged with murder.
According to the Wayne Circuit Clerk’s office, the trial date for Rod Tejeda has been set for September 18.
Three days have been set aside for the trial.
Tejeda is charged with murder in connection with the April 2012 death of Jerus Helen Neal. Neal died from injuries sustained in a two-vehicle collision that occurred on Main Street near the intersection with Young Street.
Special Judge Marc Rosen has been assigned for the trial.
A pretrial conference is set for September 10 at 10 a.m.