Update – December 18, 2019, 10:58 a.m.: The judge declared a mistrial in the case after the defendant was found not competent to aid in his defense. A retrial is tentatively scheduled for May 4, 2020.
Xavier Whitehead, 29, stands trial in Hillsborough County, Florida. Prosecutors say he murdered three people in a burglary, and burned up a house they were in. The victims were Derek Archie, 31, Haley Stone, 20, and Xavier Greene, 28.
NEW TRIAL TODAY: Xavier Whitehead charged with triple murder. Derek Archie, Haley Stone and Xavier Greene’s bodies were discovered in a Florida mobile home fire. Police say they were dead before fire intentionally started. Jury selection today. Openings possibly late afternoon. pic.twitter.com/skI2Vqd7jQ
— Law & Crime Network (@LawCrimeNetwork) December 16, 2019
A key witness in the case is co-defendant Ricky Wilkerson, 23. He pleaded no contest to begin an accessory after the fact of first-degree murder, and accessory after the fact for armed robbery. This witness–who was originally charged with murder–would spend five years in prison, to be followed by up to 12 years of probation. By virtue of the plea, he isn’t admitting wrongdoing under the law, but he did agree to testify for the state.
According to court documents obtained by Law&Crime, Wilkerson said that he was giving a ride to Whitehead, and another co-defendant Jimmy “Jimbo” Terry. Whitehead, who he knew as “JT,” was going to get clothes from a certain residence.
“Jimbo called me to ask me can I take him and LT to some place,” Wilkerson said in a transcript. “They never told me the place. They — he just was like, can you take LT to go get his clothes?”
The defendant went inside the residence, according to this account. Wilkerson claimed to have heard sounds like from a nailgun. Terry then went into the house, the witness said.
Terry is charged with being an accessory after the fact in both murder and armed robbery. He pleaded not guilty, and the case against him is pending.
[Screengrab via Fox 13]