The trial of William Marcus “Marc” Wilson on felony murder and other charges from the June 2020 shooting death of Haley Hutcheson was postponed again, this time until Aug. 22-26, apparently in response to the latest motion for a continuance from Wilson’s defense attorneys.
Judge Ronald K. “Ronnie” Thompson had originally slated the trial to begin April 18 in Bulloch County Superior Court, but after a previous defense request in March, postponed it to begin with jury selection June 27 and a courtroom again reserved for five days, through July 1.
During a motions hearing May 12, Thompson heard from attorneys about another defense motion to postpone the trial while awaiting the availability and preparation of an expert witness.
In court that day, Martha Hall, a Statesboro- and Springfield-based attorney on Wilson’s defense team, identified the expert witness as Chris Robinson. One forensic consultant by that name, who previously worked for the Atlanta Police Department Crime Lab and for the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, has a firm based in Sharpsburg, which is Wilson’s home town.
Hall said that, although defense attorneys believe they have now received, through the discovery process, all of the evidence prosecutors plan to present, some material, “related to ballistics,” was received by the defense “just in March and April.” She mentioned an FBI report and the autopsy report.
Wilson and his lawyers needed these things before they could hire an expert, and after finding Robinson for the work, discovered that he had a prepaid vacation June 27 through July 7 that he could not change, Hall said. But Chief Assistant District Attorney Barclay Black spoke in opposition to the continuance and declared that the state was “ready for trial.”
Thompson told the defense attorneys last week he would postpone the trial to the week of Aug. 22 on the condition that they provide the court an affidavit, in other words a sworn statement, from Robinson about his vacation by 5 p.m. last Monday.
It was apparently received. On the Ogeechee Judicial Circuit Superior Courts calendar, Thompson is now scheduled for jury selection and a trial Aug. 22-26 in Bulloch County, and Bulloch Clerk of Courts Heather Banks McNeal confirmed that those are the new dates for the Wilson trial.
Also during the hearing Thursday of last week, Thompson ordered the case file sealed pending trial, so the actual affidavit and any further motions will not be accessible to the media and public. New access to earlier documents is also off-limits.
Wilson, now 23, previously spent more than 20 months in jail but has been out on a conditional “house arrest” $100,000 bond since early March. He is accused of causing the June 14, 2020 death of Hutcheson, 17, with a shot fired from one vehicle toward another on Veterans Memorial Parkway.
In addition to the felony murder charge based on a charge that the shooting of Hutcheson was an aggravated assault, Wilson faces four other aggravated assault charges for the four other teenagers who were in a pickup truck with her and a charge of possessing a firearm while committing a felony.The defense attorneys have previously asserted that Wilson was acting in defense of himself and a passenger, his girlfriend at the time, because of actions by the truck’s occupants.