Deliberations Resume in Blackshell Triple Murder Trial

Deliberations Resume in Blackshell Triple Murder Trial


By Mike Hedeen

ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Jurors in the Johnny Blackshell murder trial resumed deliberations Thursday morning.

Jurors had a lot to consider after two weeks of testimony from more than 50 witnesses, and more than 300 pieces of evidence — there are a total of 16 counts.

Jurors reported Thursday that they spent over an hour-and-a-half deliberating Wednesday night before court was adjourned.

When they returned Thursday morning, they began the day by hearing a read back of testimony pertaining to the law of first and second-degree murder.

The most serious of those charges is three counts of first-degree murder, which if convicted Blackshell carries a maximum sentence of life in prison without parole.

Just before 11 a.m. jurors requested more read backs, once again pertaining to the murder charges and the lesser charges of first and second-degree manslaughter.

Also included in that request was a read back of testimony of Blackshells’ girlfriend, Tatiana Starling. It is 90 pages long and could take over an hour to get through.

In that testimony, she says Blackshell admitted to her that he was involved in the shootings as retaliation for others shooting up a friend’s home.

Starling’s car is also believed to be used in the mass shootings.

Prosecutors said Blackshell fatally shot 19-year-old Raekwon Manigault, 17-year-old Jonah Barley and 25-year-old Johnny Johnson.

Blackshell is accused of opening fire with an AK-47 into a crowd of people on Genesee Street on the night of August 19. That crowd had just left a basketball game at the Boys and Girls club of Rochester.

The jury began deliberations on Tuesday afternoon after listening to nearly three hours of closing arguments.

Time Warner Cable News has crews at the courthouse and will bring you updates until there is a verdict.