Winston-Salem 5, convicted in 2002 murder, could soon get new trial

State - Regional

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) — The Winston-Salem 5 are one step closer to a new trial.

On Wednesday, a three-judge panel convened to determine whether evidence in the 2002 murder of NBA All-Star Chris Paul’s grandfather, Nathaniel Jones, should be reviewed.

Specifically, the defendants seek to have a toboggan, black hair substance and scrapings of fibers from a brick wall transferred to forensic laboratories for the purpose of inspection and examination.

The defendants, brothers Rayshawn Banner and Nathaniel Cauthen, Jermal Tolliver, Christopher Bryant, and Dorrell Brayboy were convicted at trial which took place in 2004 and 2005.

Banner was only 14 years old at the time of the crime and the others were only 15. All five have consistently claimed their innocence.

On March 13, 2020 the North Carolina Innocence Inquiry Commission voted 5-3 and recommended a new trial after a weeklong hearing in the case. At that hearing the deposition of a key witness, Jessicah Black, was played and in it, she recanted her trial testimony.

Cauthen and his brother Banner were convicted of first-degree murder and remain in prison.

Brayboy, Bryant and Tolliver were convicted of second-degree murder and released from prison but sadly Brayboy died after being stabbed in 2019.

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