TROY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — James White spent three-and-a-half hours on his closing arguments making his best pitch to jurors in his trial, accused of murdering two adults and two young children.
White is defending himself. He has maintained that it was his former friend and co-defendant who killed the victims.
The victims were Shanise Myers and her brother Jeremiah as well as their mother Shanta Myers and friend Brandi Mells.
During his last pitch to the jury on Monday, White pointed to evidence like security video of 11-year-old Jeremiah walking home after basketball practice. He claims he stayed outside the Lansingburgh apartment, even talking to Jeremiah, yet he did nothing to stop the child from going inside.
White’s former friend Justin Mann, who accepted a sentence of 25 to life in exchange for his testimony, told jurors that he and White were both inside the apartment on the night of December 21, 2017.
Mann maintains the pair took a CDTA bus from Schenectady to Troy with a motive to steal a television and an Xbox controller. Mann claims White threatened him with a knife and directed him to tie up the victims and then White stabbed the four victims to death.
White repeatedly tried to discredit his claims saying, “It’s my position to you. And I submit to you that Justin Mann is willing to do and say anything to not only save himself but to ensure that I get convicted with him.”
“It’s simply not feasible that one person did this themselves. It isn’t logical, and it isn’t what happened on December 21, 2017,” said Assistant District Attorney Matthew Hauf.
Hauf also pushed back on White’s explanation as to why his DNA, along with two of the victims were found on a pair black gloves belonging to him. Hauf says they are the same black gloves that he was seen wearing in a cellphone video taken by White himself as well as security video from the CDTA bus the men are seen riding after the fatal attack.
White claims he and Mann had been swapping gloves the night of the killings.
Judge Debra Young is expected to give the jury their instructions Tuesday prior to deliberations.