Local News

Friend Testifies Against Suspect Accused Of Killing Neighbor

Posted August 24, 2005 5:24 a.m. EDT

— The friend of a teenager on trial for shooting and killing his 89-year-old neighbor testified Wednesday that the defendant was the ringleader in the shooting.

Prosecutors say Gregory Lee Jr. led four of his friends to Lois Cannady's home to steal her car in 2002. Cannady, who family members said carried Lee's prom picture in her wallet, was shot to death while on the phone with 911.

In court Wednesday, one of Lee's friends, Ricky Morris, who is also charged in the shooting, told jurors that Lee cut the power and kicked in the back door of Cannady's house.

"With him being so close to my mom, living there and everything, it's kind of hard to swallow," the victim's son, David Cannady, said.

Right after the arrests in 2002, the suspect's father, Greg Lee Sr., explained how he also struggled to make sense of it all.

"I love the Cannadys," he said. "David and I were close. Ms. Cannady and I were close -- just like family."

Now, the two families sit on the same Durham courtroom bench, yet they could not be farther apart.

"I lost my mom and Greg Sr. is losing his son," David Cannady said.

Now worried about their son's future, the Lees remain silent. And in the courtroom, where the divide is deep, it seems the silence is what speaks the loudest.

"If it was my son, I would be here for him, too," David Cannady said. "I understand what they're doing and I hurt for them, too."

Lee's defense claims four gang members pressured their client. If convicted, Lee faces a mandatory life sentence.