LOCKPORT – Chastity L. Wilson, one of the two women who pleaded guilty to taking part in a robbery scheme that ended with the death of a Niagara Falls man, refused to testify Monday in the murder trial of co-defendant Matthew A. Davis.
Wilson, who turns 23 today, was brought from Bedford Hills Correctional Facility in Westchester County to carry out part of her plea agreement, which committed her to testifying against Davis, who is charged with the slaying of Antoine M. Bradberry in the victim’s Niagara Falls apartment Aug. 22, 2011.
However, she refused to take the stand. Wilson is known to believe she got a bad deal in pleading guilty to attempted first-degree burglary, because she was sentenced to 13 years in prison.
She has filed a motion to have Niagara County Judge Matthew J. Murphy III reduce the sentence, but Murphy has put the motion aside until after the Davis trial.
Wilson’s attorney, Yvonne A. Vertlieb, was concerned about how the District Attorney’s Office might react.
“It does open up the possibility that they could reopen the plea and prosecute her for the felony murder,” Vertlieb said.
“We haven’t considered that possibility,” Deputy District Attorney Doreen M. Hoffmann said. “We’re just trying to get through this trial, and then we’ll decide what we will or will not do about Chastity.”
“Now the only person who can place our client at the scene is an admitted liar,” defense co-counsel Michael S. Deal said.
He was referring to the other co-defendant, Teara D. Fatico, 23, who testified against Davis last week. She got the same plea deal and same sentence as Wilson. Fatico conceded on the stand that her initial statement to police was mostly fiction.
Davis, 37, allegedly fought with Bradberry, 41, as he entered the apartment to steal marijuana the women had located while visiting Bradberry earlier that night. The two women are believed to have let Davis into the Jefferson Apartments on Rainbow Boulevard.
Monday, the jury got its first look at the surveillance video that prosecutors say shows Davis, Fatico and Wilson going in and out of the building and heading to and from Bradberry’s second-floor apartment.
One shot showed Bradberry climbing the stairs to his apartment about two hours before he died, according to Antonio LaRosa, who operates the facility’s 23-camera surveillance system, installed by Solar Vibe Entertainment.
Fatico testified that Davis had a white T-shirt wrapped around his head as he walked toward the apartment, and the video did show such a person.
Deal said, “We’re saying it’s not our guy, and we’ll let the jury figure it out.”
Deal sought to have Murphy bar the use of the video because of frequent “jump cuts” that LaRosa blamed on technical issues with the range of the motion sensor beams that turned the cameras on and off, as well as the transfer of the images to a computer hard drive.
“I believe Mr. LaRosa’s testimony undermines the reliability and accuracy of these videos,” Deal argued.
Murphy turned him down but told Deal, “I thought it was excellent cross-examination. … I presume we’ll hear more about it in your closing statement.”
The jury will see more surveillance video as the trial continues today.