Murder trial tied to deadly police chase gets underway

SHARE Murder trial tied to deadly police chase gets underway
SHARE Murder trial tied to deadly police chase gets underway

Lee Davis said he was just “chilling” with his 1-year-old daughter when Timothy Jones and his cohort barged into his South Side apartment and held him up.

“Where’s the money!” Davis said Jones repeatedly asked him after he opened the door, thinking it was his girlfriend.

“I just crawled in the bathroom and stayed down,” Davis, 24, testified at the opening of Jones’ trial Wednesday.

After stealing from Davis, Jones allegedly led police on a high-speed chase, causing an officer to accidentally strike and kill 59-year-old Jacqueline Reynolds, who was on her way to a funeral that morning on May 8, 2013.

Jones was charged with Reynolds’ murder, which his lawyer argued resulted from the reckless conduct of the officers.

“The Chicago Police Department would like to put this on him,” defense attorney Keith Spence said, arguing that the officers neglected to follow standard policy and procedures.

“They failed the public at large and they failed Jacqueline Reynolds.”

Jones, who was attending college on a football scholarship, and another man were looking to commit a crime when they went to Lee’s apartment in the 7800 block of South Ellis Avenue, Cook County prosecutors said.

Holding Lee at gunpoint, they took a pair of Air Jordan gym shoes, an iPad, an iPhone, several bank cards and $93 before fleeing in a getaway car driven by a third person, according to Assistant State’s Attorney Barbara Bailey.

Jones dropped his driver’s license in the first-floor apartment, Bailey said.

Davis’ girlfriend Charese Taylor was heading out the door for a shopping trip when she said she saw Jones and his accomplice in an apartment hallway.

As she walked out, Taylor, 23, said she heard voices yelling, “Get down!”

Taylor ran out the door and called 911 when Davis wouldn’t open the door as she furiously knocked. When she went back in, Taylor testified, she saw Jones and the other man running out.

Davis said he retrieved his gun from under his mattress and went after the men.

“I could get no good shot and the police were coming,” Davis said, explaining why didn’t pull the trigger.

Davis said he kept a gun because his family had a break-in on Christmas and had presents stolen.

Jones, who wore a red hoodie, fled holding a shoebox, the couple testified Wednesday while prosecutors played surveillance footage purportedly showing the men in and outside the apartment.

Jones eventually got behind the wheel of his cousin’s Chevy Sonic and at one point, his friends ran out of the car in different directions, trying to thwart police, Bailey said.

But Jones was not “planning on getting arrested that day” and continued driving over curbs, barreling down the street, blowing through red lights to get away from the squad cars in pursuit, Bailey said.

The cops rammed into Reynolds in an intersection of 76th Street and Yates Boulevard while chasing Jones.

Jones “was setting in a motion a series of events that resulted in a death,” Bailey said.

Spence maintained that Jones never robbed Davis. He added Jones had only gone to Davis’ apartment for money he was owed from the fake credit card scam Jones and Davis ran.

Davis said he didn’t know Jones and never crossed paths when they both attended Simeon Career Academy.

In addition to murder, 22-year-old Jones faces charges of home invasion, armed robbery and residential burglary.

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