One of Two Murder Charges Against Pierson Hood Gang Member Dismissed

In 2004, two individuals were killed in a double shooting at the Super 8 Motel in Mt. Morris Township. Jajuan Fordham, 35, is an alleged Pierson Hood gang member who was charged along with another gang member in the deaths of Marcus L. Ballard, 25, of Flint, and Kenneth M. Edwards, 19, of Clio. janitor-buggy-1373455-m.jpg

Fordham was initially charged with four counts of assault with intent to murder, conspiracy to commit murder, and two counts of murder in the fatal double shooting. Now, the charges against Fordham in connection with the incident have been dismissed by Genesee Circuit Judge Joseph Farah after Fordham’s attorney requested the case be dismissed when prosecutors refused to produce a witness who was held in federal custody.

David Leyton, Genesee County Prosecutor, said they would liked to have been able to proceed with the murder case. While prosecutors made a number of arguments as to why the case should continue, Judge Farah rejected them all. Deonte Matthews, the second suspect in the motel murders, also had charges dismissed against him earlier this year.

Charges were dropped against Matthews after his attorney argued that a confidential witness who could have cleared his client was never provided by federal authorities. Matthews has steadily held to the fact that he is innocent, and was in Tawas City with his ex-wife when the double shooting took place. The confidential witness was to have testified that Samuel Wood, a fellow gang member, was one of two who actually committed the murders. Authorities believe members of the Pierson Hood gang sought to kill members of the Merrill Hood gang in retaliation of an attack on Garner Wood, Samuel Wood’s brother.

While the charges related to the Super 8 Motel against Fordham were dismissed, he remains charged with murder in a separate incident involving the 2006 murder of Alvin Rauls who was shot and killed as he sat in a car with his girlfriend.

Michigan murder defense lawyers know that individuals convicted of any homicide offense including first- or second-degree murder face serious consequences, including the possibility of life in prison. These are serious charges which require outstanding legal support and guidance in order to reach positive results.


If you have been arrested for any serious or violent criminal offense, or are under investigation, speak with a qualified and experienced Michigan criminal defense attorney immediately.