The federal jury in Louis Coleman trial has wrapped up deliberations after a few hours of getting the case. Coleman is accused of kidnapping and causing the death of Jassy Correia in February of 2019. Correia’s body was found stuffed in a suitcase in the back of Coleman’s car in Delaware.
The US Attorney’s Office began their closing showing a photo of Jassy Correia wearing an orange jump suit she bought to go celebrate her birthday with friends at club venue in Boston. Four days later — prosecutors say her body was found in a suitcase in the trunk of Louis Coleman’s vehicle.
Federal prosecutors explained to the jury the five elements they say their evidence proves from enticing, luring the victim into the car, holding her against her will, crossing state lines into Rhode Island and that the suspect knowing and willfully caused her death.
The Defense says there was no kidnapping showing this video of Correia getting on Coleman’s back after they left the club saying you have to be a willing participant to accept a piggy back ride. The defense also told the jury, “yes she is dead and Mr. Coleman is responsible, we have not denied that but he did not kidnap her.”
The defense claims Correia and Coleman had a consensual sexual conduct and something happened and turned violent. Prosecutors say the damage to the inside of the passenger side window shows where Correia hit it with her feet which is evidence of being held against her will. Prosecutors showed Coleman’s injuries, again, claiming Correia was fighting for life while being strangled to death. The Defense says Correia was using cocaine and alcohol and could be seen all night acting aggressively and was caught on surveillance cameras fighting with her friend.
The Defense ended its closing claiming Coleman panicked and did not know what to do and claims he did not call police because he had extreme mistrust being a black man. Coleman’s attorney told the jury “he offered to help her and it turned into the worst night of his life.” In the rebuttal — the prosecutor told the jury “it was the worst night of his life. Well, it turned out to be the last night of Jassy’s life.”
If Coleman is convicted, he faces up to life in prison. Jury is scheduled to continue deliberating Wednesday morning beginning at 9:00 a.m.
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