- Associated Press - Wednesday, August 19, 2015

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - A man has been convicted of first-degree murder in the Valentine’s Day shooting deaths of his ex-girlfriend and another young woman in northeast Philadelphia more than four years ago.

Jurors deliberated for eight hours over two days before convicting Shaun Warrick on Wednesday in the February 2011 deaths of Marcedes Ivery, 21, and Tiffany Barnhill, 19, The Philadelphia Inquirer (https://bit.ly/1JilI5C ) reported.

Jurors will return Thursday to hear arguments on whether Warrick, 32, should be executed or spend life in prison without possibility of parole.

Prosecutors said the defendant was angry because Barnhill had broken off their relationship and Ivery was interfering with his efforts to talk to her. Authorities said Barnhill didn’t own a cellphone and Ivery was refusing Warrick’s calls.

Defense attorney Jack McMahon cited a lack of witnesses and physical evidence and argued that the circumstantial evidence had too many holes for conviction beyond a reasonable doubt.

“This was a sad crime, a tragic crime, a horrible crime,” he said in closing arguments Tuesday. “It shouldn’t have happened, but it did. But that’s not the question here.”

Assistant District Attorney Thomas Lipscomb, however, argued that the evidence and testimony from a woman who said she watched Warrick break into Ivery’s house proved he was the killer.

“If you hear hoofbeats, it’s a horse and not a zebra,” he told jurors. “Sometimes the simplest explanation is the most likely and it’s borne out by the evidence.”

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Information from: The Philadelphia Inquirer, https://www.inquirer.com


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