JONESBORO — Opening arguments are scheduled to begin today in the murder trial for a man authorities allege is a Vice Lords gang member.
Patrick Ramon Moore listened Monday as his lead attorney, Agis Bray, and lead state prosecutor Katie Powers argued pre-trial motions before Clayton County Superior Court Judge Geronda V. Carter.
Moore, 23, was arrested Jan. 4, 2011, following a joint investigation by Clayton County Police and the U.S. Marshals Southeast Regional Fugitive Task Force.
Moore, of Morrow, was arrested in Marietta by the U.S. Marshals Southeast Regional Fugitive Task Force. In a shooting that claimed the life of Tracey Burton Jr., 20, of Riverdale, Moore is charged with malice murder, two counts of felony murder, three counts of aggravated assault, two counts of aggravated battery, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and three counts of possession of a weapon during the commission of a crime.
The two sides argued over whether alleged evidence of “crack cocaine found on [Burton’s] person” in a Georgia Bureau of Investigation should be admitted. Powers wanted it suppressed, while Bray argued for its admission, saying, “It is a part of the defense case.”
Carter reserved judgment on the motion.
Powers recommended to Carter that if Moore is found guilty, he should receive life without parole plus 90 years. Clayton County District Attorney Tracy Graham Lawson spoke with Burton’s family and defined the state’s recommendation.
Moore told the judge he rejected the state’s recommendation.
“Moore shot 14 times at four people,” said Powers. She explained to the court the grim aftermath following the shooting. Another shooting victim, Fabian Ellis, was struck in his hand and “could see through his hand,” said Powers.
Powers said Jervod Jarvis was shot in the chest, causing a “sucking” chest wound. The shooting seriously disfigured Jarvis’ chest and back, according to police. “He could physically see his lungs,” Powers said.
The shooting occurred Jan. 3, 2011, at Regal Pointe Apartments, in Morrow, after Moore had an argument with four people about a theft, police said. Clayton County Police Detective Eddie Rivera said the AK-47 Moore used in the shooting was stolen.
The arrest warrant said Erica Peterson was a victim of the shooting. She received a “graze wound” when a bullet struck her pants, according to police.
Powers told the judge about one of Moore’s phone conversations. “In one of the jail calls, he said, ‘You better be glad [Peterson] was quick on her feet or else she would have died.’ ”
Last year, officials alleged Moore had a violent criminal history, including a parole warrant in Illinois for false imprisonment.