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Testimony is scheduled to resume today in the Tennessee murder trial of Shelby Isaac. A grand jury indicted Isaac on three counts of first-degree murder related to the deaths of Eddie “EJ” Tate, his girlfriend Edwina Thomas, and an unborn child Thomas was carrying. Isaac also faces one count of aggravated robbery.
During brief opening statements, prosecutors said Tate died on cold pavement in a warm puddle of his own blood and that Thomas died fighting for both her own life and the life of her child at the hospital. Thomas was six to eight weeks pregnant when she died.
Defense attorneys for Isaac blamed the murders on a getaway driver who fled the scene in a silver Mitsubishi. That driver, Victoria Seay, was the first person arrested in relation to the case. She told police she saw Isaac pull the trigger and then helped her get away. Seay faces separate charges for being an accessory to murder after the fact.
Prosecutors theorize that Isaac previously bought two bundles of hair extensions or hair weaves from EJ Tate on the day he and the others were killed. Isaac set up an appointment for additional purchases later that same day. Prosecutors say Isaac and Seay met at the apartment complex where Isaac lived and waited for Tate to arrive. When Tate pulled up, prosecutors say Isaac pulled a gun, shot five to seven times, and took off with Seay.
The defense says no physical evidence ties Isaac to the scene and that the only person who can definitively place Isaac there is co-defendant Seay.
At one point during the first day of testimony, attorneys fought loudly with one another over evidence issues surrounding a cell phone. The defense claimed prosecutors didn’t hand over information regarding a phone with enough time for the defense to research phone numbers.