LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - She was shot and killed in the middle of a day in a Louisville park. Monday, one of two men charged with that murder are getting ready to go before a jury.
Steven Pettway, 20, and Dejuan Hammond, 33, are charged with killing Troya Sheckles in March 2009. The prosecution requested Pettway have his trial heard before Dejuan Hammond, and that the two be tried separately.
Police say Dejuan Hammond paid Pettway to kill Sheckles because she was set to testify against Hammond's brother Lloyd in another murder case. Police say Sheckles identified Lloyd Hammond as the person who shot and killed her boyfriend back in 2006.
Prosecutor Tom Van De Rostyne says they wanted to separate the trials so there wouldn't have to redact any witness statements that pertain to just one of the suspects. He told the judge there are not only witnesses from Shelby Park who saw Sheckles murder, but also some who witnessed conversations between Hammond and Pettway after which proves the two were working together to keep Sheckles from testifying in Lloyd Hammond's murder case.
"We believe there will be testimony that Mr. Pettway returns after shooting Ms. Sheckles to a residence where other individuals are present and that they view him change clothes and they view a conversation basically one sided between Mr. Pettway and Mr. Hammond and Mr. Hammond tells him not to tell anyone what happened," explained prosecutor Tom Van De Rostyne.
Opening statements are set to begin Tuesday morning. A trial date for Dejuan Hammond will be set once Pettway's trial is complete.
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