Murder case being tried this week

By Staff
Melissa Dozier-Cason, FCT Writer
A seven-year-old murder case is getting its day in court as Franklin County is in the midst of a capital murder case.
The jury began hearing testimony in the case yesterday, and the trial is expected to last through Friday.
Henry Roger Jones, 36, is standing trial for the 2000 shooting death of his mother, 53-year-old Bonnie Parker Jones.
The victim's body was found in her home in the early morning hours of January 13, 2000 by investigators after Jones called the authorities.
Jones claims that he discovered his mother's body after returning from a long walk. Jones called his brother, Keith, and a few other family members prior to calling the police.
Parker was shot twice: once in the back, and once in the head, both at close range, according to witness testimony.
In the opening statements, District Attorney Joey Rushing gave the jury an outline of the evidence that is to be presented.
The jury will be asked to decide if Jones committed Capital Murder, Felony Murder or Murder, or find him not guilty of all the charges.
Jones is also charged with first-degree burglary.
"All of what you need to hear will come from the witness stand," Rushing told the jury during opening statements.
During the defense's rebuttal, attorney John Benn quickly pointed out that the murder happened almost seven years ago, and that there is no physical evidence linking Jones to the crime, and that the investigators did not test for DNA, gun powder residue or trace evidence on the victim or Jones.
Benn told the court that the fact there is no physical evidence is a missed opportunity for the state.
"This case is like a puzzle," Benn told the jury. "The state has painted the picture on the front, but the pieces inside don't fit."
According to witness testimony yesterday morning, there was no medical examiner at the scene to determine the time of death, only a deputy coroner.
However, yesterday afternoon, the state clarified the definition of a medical examiner as a full time coroner, and noted that only three counties in Alabama have a medical examiner on staff.
Jones admitted that he took a check from his mother's checkbook, and forged her signature for $60.
The defense points out this is not the first time Jones had cashed a check "from mother," and stated that $60 is not worth killing someone over.
"If I were going to kill someone, it would be for a lot more than $60," Benn argued.
Over 25 witnesses are expected to take the stand throughout the trial.
The state is not seeking the death penalty in this case, Rushing said.
"We are seeking a life sentence without the possibility of parole." Rushing said.

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