Carruth Judge Rules On Motions

Statements and notes made by the wounded girlfriend of Rae Carruth can be used against the former NFL player in his trial on charges of murdering her, a judge ruled Friday.

Carruth, 26, goes to trial Oct. 23 on charges he masterminded the shooting death of Cherica Adams last year.

Adams, 24 and pregnant, was driving in Charlotte on Nov. 16 when she was shot four times. Doctors delivered her son before she died Dec. 14, and the baby is now in the custody of her family.

Superior Court Judge Charles Lamm ruled Friday that most of a 911 call made by Adams when she was shot could be used in court.

He designated in the transcript one portion that could not be used. Prosecutors and defense attorneys refused to say what Lamm barred, and the judge didn't disclose it in court.

In addition, Lamm allowed use of statements from Adams to police and a medic when they arrived at the scene, as well as remarks Adams made to a nurse when she got out of surgery the next day. Notes she wrote, some of them barely legible, also can be used, Lamm ruled.

Lawyers for the former Carolina Panthers wide receiver argued that the 911 call should not be allowed because the operator tried to lead Adams to say Carruth was involved.

Adams told the operator she was following Carruth in his car when his vehicle slowed in front of her and another car pulled alongside her and opened fire.

Defense attorney David Rudolf said the operator then asked Adams if her "boyfriend did this." Adams responded, "I don't know what to believe."

Prosecutor David Graham argued that Adams' response was a stunned reaction to Carruth's behavior.

Graham said Carruth had taken Adams to the movies earlier that evening and "acted as her lover." Afterward, Graham said, Carruth led her into an ambush and helped commit the crime by blocking her car in when he slowed his vehicle.

"'I don't know what to think' reflects that she was stunned that her lover had taken her on a date and then ambushed," Graham said.

Lamm also ruled Friday that the cable channel Court TV could televise Carruth's trial and that The Charlotte Observer could have one photographer in the courtroom. Both defense and prosecution had opposed cameras in the courtroom.

Carruth, 26, and three other men - Van Brett Watkins, 40; Michael Eugene Kennedy, 25; and Stanley Drew Abraham, 19 - were charged with murder in the death of Cherica Adams.

Watkins pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and agreed to testify against Carruth. He could be sentenced to 50 years in prison.

Lamm ruled Friday that Carruth's defense could have Watkins' medical records from Mecklenburg County Jail. They sought his medical history from several places, ut Lamm limited access to the local jail records.

Rudolf said Thursday the local jail records detail jailhouse threats to kill law enforcement officers and Watkins' use of an anti-psychotic drug.

On Thursday, Lamm said evidence of Carruth's flight to Tennessee and statements by Watkins can be admitted at Carruth's trial.

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