Prosecutors make rest in murder trial

Published 9:14 pm Tuesday, December 9, 2008

A Pike County jury could reach a verdict today in the case of a man charged with murdering a fellow patron at Brown’s Lounge in 2007.

Michael Streeter is charged with murder in the shooting death of Joey Spikner of Brundidge outside the lounge on May 27, 2007.

In the second day of testimony, prosecutors called two more eyewitnesses, Streeter’s girlfriend and a firearms expert to the stand before resting their case.

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Willie Bernard “BB”Cole was called to testify against Streeter, who he said was his friend.

With his head held down and reluctant to testify, Cole laid out the events of the evening, beginning when he, Streeter and Mack Kelley went to Brown’s Lounge shortly after midnight.

Cole said the three weren’t regulars to the club, but they had been there on more than one occasion. On this particular night, Cole said they stayed about 15 minutes before they headed outside to Kelley’s dark blue Crown Victoria.

Cole said he never left the car, but he did hear shots fired, and the three did have guns on hand that night.

Cole testified the three left after the incident and turned off the highway onto a country road, in hopes of not being seen.

“We didn’t want to get seen by the police,” Cole said. “We all just said we think somebody got shot.”

In his first interview, Cole initially told Troy Police officers he had no knowledge of where the shots came from and that other shots had been fired at the vehicle, an account Streeter’s attorney Susan James said was inconsistent with his testimony Tuesday.

“You didn’t want to be here today to testify, but the last place you wanted to be was here, sitting in this chair, charged with murder wasn’t it?” James asked Cole as she pointed at her client.

The jury also heard reluctant testimony from Roshanda Townsend, the mother of Streeter’s child.

Townsend told the court she heard from Streeter the night he allegedly shot Spikner, and she allowed Streeter to stay with her at her cousin’s home on Gardner Bassett Road on May 27.

Townsend said Streeter told her there had been shots fired at Brown’s Lounge that evening. “He said some guys were shooting at him, and he said they (he and his friends) started shooting also,” Townsend said.

Testimony from firearms expert Adam Grooms, who works with the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences, confirmed the bullet found in the autopsy matched the casings fired from the Keltec rifle, which Streeter allegedly used.

From the defense, James called Kelley to the stand, but he invoked his right to remain silent, since he could be charged as an accessory to murder, according to District Attorney Gary McAliley.

Kelley likely will face the grand jury at the end of January, McAliley said.

McAliley said he would seek charges against another of Tuesday’s witnesses. “We have one other person who, based on her testimony today, may be charged with a crime also,” McAliley said.

James also called John Averett, Spikner’s friend who testified Monday, to question him on being a part of a group known as the Hilltop Hustlers.

Averett denied his affiliation with the group Monday, though another witness Clarence Potts said he, Spikner and Averett were affiliated with the group.

Averett continued to deny his membership with the HTH, though James had a picture of him with a HTH medallion.

Potts, in his testimony, said he had been involved in an altercation with Streeter a few weeks prior to the incident at Club After 7, and though there was no evidence to support it, said the bullets were meant for him that night. “The bullet was meant for me,” Potts said.

Closing arguments are scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. in the Circuit Court.