Trial continues in 2007 murder of Tigers football player

By Kontji Anthony - bio | email

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Devin Jefferson once again appeared fidgety on Day 2 of his first-degree murder trial.

The prosecution brought to the stand Erica Bell, who was Jefferson's girlfriend when the murder happened.  She was also the ex-girlfriend of the victim in this case, Taylor Bradford.

"He lived in Carpenter Complex as well," she said.

Prosecutors showed how the Tigers football player and his ex-girlfriend lived in the same complex where Jefferson often visited her. At one point, the two men fought.

"After the fight, his shirt had been ripped and there was blood on his shirt," she said.

Bell said Jefferson was with her the night of the murder, but he left with her parking pass, and that's all she knew. Prosecutors say Jefferson used her pass to let three of his buddies into the complex to rob Bradford of 74-hundred dollars in casino winnings.

Daeshawn Tate, one of the robbers still facing his own trial, told jurors Jefferson led them to Bradford.

The judge kept his face private to prevent retaliation in jail.

"He told us about a guy on campus flashing a lot of money," Tate said. "He asked us if we wanted to make the money, ant to go get the money.  He told us about robbing this individual."

Tate also said co-defendant Courtney Washington was the driver and Victor Trezvant pulled the trigger.

Taylor was a business major and Tigers Football defensive lineman when a botched robbery took his life in 2007.

Tuesday, his father, Jimmie Bradford, had to identify his son for the jury from a coroner's photo.  He returned to court Wednesday to watch other testimony.

"My wife and I, we're just doing the best we can," Jimmie Bradford said.

Jimmie Bradford said he will be in court for Jefferson's verdict and for the verdicts of the three men who robbed his son.

"We're going to be here," he said.  "They've got three other guys and every time we'll be here until the end."

Bradford said the loss of his son in the prime of his life is an injustice.

"We miss our son and it's just not right," Jimmie Bradford said.

While Jefferson was not at the scene of the murder, prosecutors said he came up with the idea and walked his Treadwell High School friends through the robbery.

One of the robbers took the stand Wednesday, another may take the stand Thursday.

The jury trial is expected to wrap up Friday.

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