Former Trooper On Trial For Murder
Posted September 28, 1998 7:00 a.m. EDT
CUMBERLAND COUNTY — A former state trooper is on trial in Cumberland County for killing Vonnie Hall, a Fayetteville business owner, in January of 1993. Family members of the victim have waited five years for the trial of Maurice Parker to begin.
Hall's wife took the stand Tuesday. She described the last time she saw her husband alive. His son also talked about the family.
In opening arguments, assistant District Attorney Charles Scott told jurors that witnesses will testify Parker killed the 56-year-old before Hall could expose him.
Scott says the highway patrol trooper discovered that Hall suspected him of dealing cars and titles from Hall's Motor Company.
"You'll see a trail of checks and titles that lead right to that defendant," Scott told jurors, pointing to Parker.
But Parker's attorney say his client has not admitted to any crimes. And the defense also says the prosecution's witnesses cannot be considered credible, because they have changed their stories several times.
"It will be your job," Howard Kurtz told the jury, "to decide upon the credibility of the witnesses."
Testimony began Tuesday with the Cumberland County sheriff's deputy who found Vonnie Hall's body.
Hall's family has been outspoken and critical of the prosecutor's office for what they consider unnecessary delays. The family will not speak during the trial, at the request of attorneys.