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Prosecutor: EMU Football Played Killed For iPhone, Wallet

Demarius Reed
Demarius Reed (Credit: Eastern Michigan University)

ANN ARBOR (WWJ/AP) - A prosecutor says Eastern Michigan University wide receiver Demarius Reed was murdered "for an iPhone and a wallet that were never even used."

Testimony began Wednesday in the trial of 21-year-old Ed Thomas of Detroit on open murder and robbery charges in the shooting of the 20-year-old football player from Chicago.

Washtenaw County Assistant Prosecutor Nimish Ganatra told jurors Wednesday that Thomas punched and robbed Reed before accomplice Kristopher Pratt shot Reed in the head.

On Friday, Pratt pleaded guilty to second-degree murder. The 20-year-old from Detroit admit he shot Reed and agrees to testify against Thomas.

Taking the witness stand Wednesday, Reed's teammate and roommate Julius Shelby testified that he discovered his friend's body at the bottom of a stairwell at their apartment building last October, and called 911 when he saw blood coming from Reed's midsection.

WWJ Newsradio 950's Ron Dewey reported that Shelby, with friends and family in the courtroom for support, reacted emotionally when an evidence photo showing Reed's bloody body was projected on a courtroom monitor.

In cross-examination by the defense, Shelby test ivied that he did not recall seeing Thomas at the club where he and Reed were the night before, or at the apartment building where Reed died the following morning.

Thomas's lawyer told jurors that Pratt's testimony was "bought and paid for." Lorne Brown says Thomas came to Ypsilanti to "hang out with friends and have fun," not rob or kill.

[Catch up on this case].

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