Preliminary Hearing Begins For Teens Accused In Papa John's Truck Driver's Murder

Friday, September 20th 2013, 5:12 pm
By: News On 6

Three men accused of murdering a man outside Papa John's last March, were in court today.

Robert Horton was a family man from Texas. He was in Tulsa unloading a trailer of pizza supplies on 11th Street when he was shot and killed.

No evidence was presented on which of the three men pulled the trigger, but the District Attorney said it doesn't matter for now, since all three are charged equally with felony murder.

Jermaine Savory, Damian Anderson and Frankie Jackson are the 17-year-olds charged with murdering Robert Horton on March 23, 2013.

Horton had just celebrated his 30th wedding anniversary. He drove a truck with pizza supplies, and Tulsa was one of his stops.

His co-worker testified he heard some pops and trays crashing to the ground and heard Horton yell, "Oh my God," the morning of his murder. He said he didn't realize Horton had been shot until paramedics got there and were performing CPR.

3/25/2013 Related Story: Tulsa Police Arrest 3 Teens For Murder Of Papa John's Driver

Fifteen-year-old Damon Redd also testified. He's related to two of the suspects. Jermaine Savory is his big brother and Frankie Jackson is his cousin, and he's friends with the third, Damian Anderson.

He was extremely reluctant to testify, but admitted he was in the car with the suspects the night of the murder. He said he couldn't remember who drove, hardly anything that was said, or who said it, and admitted he had lied and changed his story.

Defense attorneys pointed out he was only there to avoid getting charged with murder himself.

The lead investigator also testified. He said two of the suspects did videotaped interviews with police. He said Jermaine Savory claimed he stayed in the car, but Jackson and Anderson approached the victim and Anderson had the gun.

But, he said Anderson claimed he stayed in the car and Savory and Jackson went up to the victim and Savory had the gun.

Jackson only admitted he was in the car, then asked for an attorney.

The detective believes the men planned to rob Horton, but shot him in the chest and got nothing.

Horton's family couldn't make the long trip for court.

"This is an incredibly emotional time for them. They're from Texas. He had driven up here and it was too difficult for them to come up here," said Assistant District Attorney Nalani Ching.

The DA has one more witness to call and that will be Tuesday. After that, the judge will decide if there's enough evidence to force these three men to stand trial for the murder.