Defense rests after brief presentation in Hazleton homicide trial

·1 min read

Jun. 11—WILKES-BARRE — The trial of Gene Hawkins was more or less on hold until Friday morning, after an extremely early break for the day on Thursday.

Hawkins, 51, has been on trial this week, accused in the fatal stabbing of Lashaun Overton, 34, outside the Hazleton apartment building in which they both resided in September 2015. Multiple eyewitnesses saw the stabbing, all saying this week that Hawkins was the perpetrator.

After prosecutors rested their case on Wednesday afternoon, the defense provided a very brief case, offering jurors only one witness with a very short testimony. Hawkins himself did not testify.

After the defense rested on Thursday morning, Judge Tina Polachek Gartley allowed them to go home for the day just before 10 a.m., due to a scheduling conflict which would not have allowed for closing arguments to be made.

Jurors will hear closing arguments Friday morning, and will begin deliberation then.

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