ROCKFORD — Screams and amoral bawl alternate a quiet Winnebago County attorneys on Tuesday as prosecutors played the 911 alarm a 10-year-old babe fabricated afterwards her stepmother was shot.
That alarm was played on the aboriginal day of balloon for Deontay L. Gunnell, 23, of Rockford. Gunnell is one of three men accused in the baleful cutting of Racheal Garrett, 25, a mother of four. Garrett was attempt on Dec. 4, 2015, while central her Fairgrounds Valley accommodation in the 800 block of Tanner Court. She was sitting on her bed in a second-floor bedchamber aback a devious ammo broken the bank and hit her during a shootout amid bodies alfresco the accessible apartment complex.
“Get down! Get down! Get down!” the babe yelled to her ancestors — ages 4, 5 and 8. “My stepmother aloof got shot. She is in the hallway.”
The babe sobbed and screamed as a 911 bagman approved to apprentice added information, allay the comfortless adolescent and allocution her through means to advice Garrett. Several women in the courtroom, ancestors associates of Garrett and the girl, larboard in tears as the alarm was played during the bank trial, which is actuality heard by Judge John Lowry after a jury.
“She’s not moving! Mommy!” the babe screamed into the phone.
Gunnell and accompanying brothers Donnie D. Williams and Lonnie E. Williams anniversary are answerable with first-degree murder, aggravated acquittal of a firearm, control of a weapon by a felon and mob action. All three are answerable because the analysis cannot point to a distinct being who accursed the baleful attempt that authorities say went adrift during a drive-by.
Rockford Detective Robert Cure testified that aback he accustomed at the home, he heard accouchement arrant and agreeable “pleas of ‘help.’” As he accomplished the top of the stairs central Garrett’s home, he begin her on the attic in the additional adventure hallway. She was lying face bottomward in what appeared to be a basin of blood.
During aperture statements Tuesday, Assistant State’s Attorney Joseph Carder said assemblage told badge they saw a red or beach Pontiac Grand Prix drive bottomward Tanner Court, gunshots were accursed at a accumulation of bodies continuing outside, and again the car sped off.
“A bullet, a distinct copper-jacketed, .45-caliber ammo penetrated the attenuate walls of her home … ripped through her affection and came to a final blow in her liver,” Carder told Lowry. “Racheal got up from that room, took a few accomplish … and again fell on the floor.”
Two hours later, Carder said, Gunnell absolved into SwedishAmerican Hospital with “a gunshot anguish to his aback or appropriate high shoulder.”
Assistant Accessible Defender Frank Perri said no affirmation ties Gunnell to the killing.
“The weapon was not begin with Mr. Gunnell, but Lonnie and Donnie Williams, in their car. There is no affirmation that places Mr. Gunnell at Tanner Court,” Perri said.
No DNA affirmation links Gunnell to the shooting, Perri said.
“He was not there and there was not one attestant that can say (he was present),” Perri said, abacus if Gunnell testifies, he will say he was attempt in the aback abroad that day.
The balloon is accepted to resume on Wednesday. Gunnell charcoal in the Winnebago County Jail.
The Williams twins are due aback in cloister on Dec. 7. Donnie and Lonnie Williams, 22, both of Rockford, additionally abide in jail.
Kristen Zambo: 815-987-1339; [email protected]; @KristenZambo
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