AP NEWS

Evidence testing awaited in Mississippi police killing case

December 18, 2019 GMT

BROOKHAVEN, Miss. (AP) — Prosecutors are asking the Mississippi Crime Lab to speed up testing on evidence in the death penalty case of a man charged in the 2018 shooting deaths of two police officers.

Marquis Flowers is charged with two counts of capital murder, and his trial could be months away. He appeared in Lincoln County Circuit Court on Tuesday for a status hearing in his case, the Daily Leader reported.

Assistant District Attorney Brendon Adams told Judge Michael Taylor that prosecutors are awaiting results from the Crime Lab on ballistics and DNA testing.

“We have contacted them and had them put a rush on this,” Adams said.

Flowers, 27, was indicted Oct. 28 on two counts of capital murder in the deaths of Brookhaven police Cpl. Zach Moak, 31, and patrol officer James White, 35, and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. Flowers pleaded not guilty Nov. 12 to all three counts.

The officers were killed Sept. 29, 2018, while responding to a call about shots being fired at a home in Brookhaven.

Defense attorneys Kelsey Rushing and M.A. Bass sat by Flowers during the hearing Tuesday. They said they had no new information to give the judge about the case. The next status hearing is set for Jan. 21.

Flowers was previously convicted of auto burglary charges in south Mississippi’s Lincoln and Pike counties. He was charged in Natchez with taking a motor vehicle and four counts of auto burglary, fleeing from authorities in a high-speed chase in February 2017. He later turned himself in. Released on bail, Flowers was a fugitive at the time of the Brookhaven shootings after failing to appear for a court date.

Flowers’ parole was revoked after the Brookhaven officers were killed, and he is in custody in the Central Mississippi Correctional Facility in Pearl.