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A dramatic scene unfolded in an Ohio courtroom on Tuesday after a judge dismissed murder charges against the brother of Olympic gymnast Simone Biles.
Judge Joan Synenberg of Cuyahoga County, Ohio, said the evidence for the charges was “insufficient” and would not support a conviction in the case against Tevin Biles-Thomas.
“This matter has drawn to a conclusion. I thank everyone for their effort, and my heart goes out to the families of the victims,” Judge Syngenberg said in concluding the hearing. Suddenly, a figure flashed across video of the court proceedings, and someone offscreen shouts “you’ve got to be f***ing kidding me”.
Mr Biles-Thomas was accused of fatally shooting three men – DelVaunte Johnson, 19; Toshaun Banks, 21; and DeVaughn Gibson, 23 – at a party on New Years Eve in 2018.
NBC News reported that Mr Johnson’s mother rushed toward Mr Biles-Thomas in a scuffle partially captured by the camera in the courtroom.
“I’m going to kill you,” the woman appears to say in the altercation.
Mr Biles-Thomas’ defence lawyers argued there was no forensic evidence proving the defendant fired at the men who were killed. No witnesses testified that they saw Mr Biles-Thomas fire at the victims.
A mistrial was declared in the case last month after jurors received legal paperwork by mistake.
Ms Biles, an Olympic gold medallist, wrote on Twitter in September 2019 that it was “a terrible tragedy” and that “My heart aches for everyone involved, especially for the victims and their families”.
Gino Spocchia contributed