While her body has not been recovered, Judge Kimberly Schaefer has determined that Jahleel Hoskins will stand trial on charges of open murder in the case of Latrice Maze, a mother of 5 who has been missing since March 19. Hoskins was allegedly involved in a domestic dispute with Maze on the last day she was known to be alive.
Hoskins uncle, Greg Shanklin, was expected to testify via Internet video from his home due to the fact that he recently suffered double pneumonia and is a paraplegic; however, Hoskins’ attorney Brett Stevenson wanted the defendant’s uncle at the probable cause hearing in person. Assistant Kent County Prosecutor Kelley Koncki dropped her request for an Internet connection and sent an ambulance to get Shanklin for the court proceeding.
Stevenson said in court that it was not the defense’s intention to put Mr. Shanklin through more, but that Hoskins has a right to confront his accuser in open court. Hoskins worked for New York Chicken, but according to news reports at Mlive.com was also a paid care provider for his uncle, who claimed that Hoskins did not show up on the day that he and Maze were involved in the domestic dispute. Shanklin’s son and several of Hoskins’ friends testified in May that the defendant confessed to choking the mother of 5 and putting her body in a trash dumpster.
One friend, Destin Peak, testified that Hoskins called him on March 19 saying that he “did” her and needed a favor. Peak and Hoskins met at a convenience store located at 3195 Eastern Avenue SE, where Peak said that the defendant showed no emotion and spoke in a matter-of-fact manner.
While the victim’s body has not been located, it is believed by authorities that her body was incinerated.
Michigan murder defense lawyers know that the penalties for first-degree or open murder are extremely serious; in fact, a conviction could mean life in prison. While there seems to be no hard evidence in this case considering the lack of a body, Hoskins will face severe consequences if convicted.
Individuals who have been arrested for murder or any violent crime must consult with a capable and aggressive Michigan criminal defense attorney at once, so that work can begin to protect your legal rights and freedom.