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Chavis Murphy trial begins, defense claims there are no witnesses in Burlington murder

BURLINGTON, Vt. - Facing first degree murder in the 2015 shooting death of Obafemi Adedapo, Chavis Murphy entered a Burlington courtroom Tuesday with his fate left to a panel of 15 jurors.

"There was an argument, the defendant was angry and he was in a rage... He could not let it go," said Franklin Paulino during his opening statement for the prosecution.

In the moments leading up to the shooting, witnesses say there was a fight inside what used to be the Zen Lounge. Witnesses indicated that it involved Adedapo but not Murphy.

However, Samuel Alexander, a friend of Murphy’s who was there that night says Murphy was upset about what had happened and confronted Adedapo outside.

"He started walking away and then Mr. Murphy got more angry and chased after him,” said Alexander while under oath Tuesday.

Paulino asked, “Did you see him have anything in his hands or do anything?”

“He had the gun on him," answered Alexander.

Alexander says he then heard shots but didn't see the shooter.

Adedapo's friend Leon Delima was also nearby, "All hell breaks loose, I hear a little argument and then the next thing you know I hear gun shot and see him fall and I just see a bunch of people running."

Prosecutors says Murphy fired eight shots, Adedapo was hit four times.

Delima said, he also did not see who fired the gun, "I never told anyone that Chavis murphy shot my friend... I didn't see his face."

Prosecutors say Murphy can be seen with Adedapo wearing a distinctive white and black sweatshirt in surveillance video.

During his opening statement Tuesday, defense attorney Lamar Enzor told the jury that nobody would or could identify his client as the shooter.

Enzor asked "Did you notice for example, whether or not the shooter was wearing anything distinctive?”

Delima answered, “I was drinking that night, I can't tell you, I really don't know."

Murphy faces a maximum of 35 years to life in prison if convicted.


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