LA MARQUE — Three days of sex, drinking and drug use culminated with the alleged robbery and fatal stabbing of an 84-year-old woman, testimony revealed Wednesday in a teenager’s capital murder trial.

Kimberly Jackson, 25, of La Marque testified she met the defendant, Jor’Dan Jacqueinn Maurice Lewis, on May 26, 2011, when he was 14. It was a Thursday night.

Lewis is accused of stabbing Vaneeda Wright 28 times inside her house on Prune Street in La Marque. He became possibly the youngest defendant ever certified to stand trial in Galveston County as an adult in a capital murder case.

Wright’s daughter and grandson found her body May 29, 2011, on her kitchen floor in a pool of blood with a butcher knife embedded in her cheek.

That Thursday night, Lewis was among the friends who went with Jackson to an apartment shared by two adult men at Mainland Crossings, 7500 Emmett F. Lowry Expressway, in Texas City. The following day, Jackson and Jor’Dan were alone in the apartment as everyone else went to Walmart.

Sex with minor

Lewis played a game, listened to music then sat on the couch with Jackson.

“Did you and Jor’Dan have sex that day?” Prosecutor Rebecca Russell asked Jackson.

“Yes ma’am,” Jackson said.

Testimony revealed Jackson attended special education classes at La Marque High School.

Although Jackson testified she stopped smoking marijuana in 2008, she admitted to drinking that Friday night. On Saturday, Jackson went to work at a corn dog business but returned to the apartment and again spent the night at the complex.

Jackson testified the next morning she heard Lewis say he wanted a ride to “hit a lick” and that she didn’t know what the term meant.

Lewis convinced his adult male friend to drive him to La Marque. Jackson went along for the ride. She testified Lewis told the driver to park a street away and that Lewis asked them to wait about 15 minutes. The teenager walked to Prune Street and disappeared from sight.

About an hour later, Lewis emerged from the corner of Prune Street, waving the driver his way. The car stopped in front of Wright’s house, and Lewis walked to the bushes and retrieved a pillowcase. Jackson said Lewis tossed the pillowcase in the back seat next to her and then entered the car.

‘I was just kidding’

“He said he had killed somebody,” Jackson said. “I said, ‘You did what?’ He said he killed somebody.”

Silence ensued. Lewis looked at the driver, then the driver looked at Jackson, and Lewis spoke again.

“He says, ‘I was just kidding,’” Jackson said. “‘She wasn’t there.’”

Jackson testified she saw no blood on Lewis when they left the area of Prune Street, and the driver never left the car.

Once back at the apartment, Lewis emptied the pillowcase, which contained jewelry and a cellphone. Lewis’ defense attorney, Margaret Hindman, said the jewelry pile had been rifled through.

La Marque police and sheriff’s office investigators found Wight’s bedroom ransacked. Prosecutor Kevin Petroff said a crime scene investigator found only one print in Wright’s house, a palm print on the face of a floor cabinet directly above Wright’s body. The print was Lewis’, Petroff said.

Sunday night, Lewis slept upstairs with Jackson’s female friend. Her friend later called Jackson upstairs and showed her a necklace Lewis gave her.

“I told (her) Jor’Dan said he had killed somebody,” Jackson said. “That’s where he got the necklace from.”

Russell asked Jackson what her friend did with the necklace.

“She threw it away,” Jackson said.

Death on Prune Street

Jackson slept at home, her mother’s house, Monday night and watched a televised news broadcast on Tuesday morning, learning someone died on Prune Street.

Jackson called her sister, who called Jackson’s aunt. On Wednesday, a constable known to the family took Jackson to the La Marque Police Department to give one of two statements.

La Marque police Sgt. Shawn Spruill, the lead investigator in Wright’s homicide, is expected to begin his testimony today in the Justice Center’s Constitutional Courtroom on the fourth floor, with visiting Judge David Garner presiding over the case filed in Galveston’s 405th District Court.

Because of his age, Lewis would face a maximum of 40 years in prison, including time served, if convicted by a jury. He is too young to qualify for the death penalty.

Contact reporter Chris Paschenko at 409-683-5241 or chris.paschenko@galvnews.com.

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(5) comments

sverige1
Lars Faltskog

At 25, Jackson still attends special education classes?? Or, was the writing in the story literally in past tense - "attended"? If she still attends classes at her age, then she must have some severe brain deficits. I believe the oldest one can attend is at 26.

Obviously in her years being in a special school setting, she didn't learn that in our society adults shouldn't bed down with minors.

Sounds like a fiiiiiiine group of folks involved in this whole thing.

Carol Frank

I have heard that the trial is being held by a visiting judge because the current judge for the 405th is not qualified to preside over a capital murder trial. If it is true, why are we wasting the taxes paying unqualified judges and then paying for visiting judges to hear cases?

Mike Meador

sverige1- Can't you imagine being seated on this jury? Are some of those parties involved in the case what LMISD puts out today? That's a rhetorical question.

sverige1
Lars Faltskog

Response to cougargator posted at 11:26 am on Thu, Feb 28, 2013:

Well, I would very likely not ever be picked on a jury for this type of case. I'm sure I can find many reasons to convince lawyers on each side that I just wouldn't be partial.

Don't know about the rest of you, but I don't think I could sit through something like this.

MissionaryMan
Walter Manuel

Well, since inquiring minds wanted to know why the 405th distict judge doesn't have this capital murder trial, I did some investigative work and this is what I found out. It's certainly not the qualifications of the judge that someone might suggest, but rather the amount of case dockets and trials that this court is already handling.

The 405th district judge acquired a lot of cases already on the docket prior to the judge taking office. The 405th district court currently has 73 criminal trials on a 2 week trial docket, not counting other cases that the court will hear in between.

As far as the county having to pay for a visiting judge to hear this murder trial this money is set aside by the state to cover visiting judges and so the county and taxpayers are not out of any money.

In all fairness to this judge, perhaps one might look at the court docket to see exactly why it would be better to have a visiting judge listen to a trial that could take several weeks and tying up a court and further back logging their case loads.

I hope this information helps others to understand that what I found has nothing to do with qualifications and everything to do with the efficiency of the court while attempting to continue clearing a lot of back logged cases. [wink]

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