DECATUR — Two trials for attempted murder due to be heard in Decatur this week have collapsed after the victim changed his statement in one case and disappeared in the other, resulting in all charges being dropped.
The cases, which are unrelated, involved attempted murder charges filed against Decatur men Cory J. Marquis, 30, and Roy M. Wilks Jr., 30. Both had been scheduled for Macon County Circuit Court trials due to have begun Monday.
In the case of Marquis, he was also facing charges of aggravated battery with a firearm and being an armed habitual criminal after a 34-year-old man suffered a torso gunshot wound June 17 in the 1000 block of East Main Street.
Decatur police detective Barry Hitchens said in a preliminary hearing that Marquis had been seen chasing the victim before shooting him with a revolver.
First Assistant State’s Attorney Nichole Kroncke said Tuesday that the victim in the Marquis case had since changed his story.
“Now he’s saying he has no recollection of who shot him,” she said.
She said an original statement made from his hospital bed and implicating Marquis was not recorded.
All charges against Marquis were dismissed “without prejudice” at a court hearing March 5, which means they could be refiled at a later date.
A Decatur woman, Brittany M. Shelton, 23, who pleaded guilty Jan. 25 to hiding Marquis in her home, was sentenced to 24 months' probation for concealing/aiding a fugitive.
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In the case of Wilks, he had been accused by prosecutors of trying to shoot a 41-year-old man to death Sept. 2 in the 1100 block of East Wood Street.
The victim was quoted in a sworn Decatur police affidavit as saying he had once been arrested on an aggravated battery and robbery charge against Wilks. He said he had taken off running when he saw Wilks emerge from a car and then heard multiple shots being fired at him as he fled.
Kroncke said this case collapsed when the victim, together with another key eye witness, both disappeared.
“They have absconded, and their whereabouts are unknown at this time, so neither of them could be served with subpoenas," Kroncke said.
At a court hearing Friday, the attempted murder charge against Wilks was dismissed without prejudice along with charges of aggravated discharge of a firearm, being a felon in possession of a weapon and aggravated unlawful use of a weapon.
At a hearing Sept. 27, Jamar M. Lee, 37, of Decatur had been sentenced to 60 days in jail after pleading guilty to the aggravated unlawful use of a weapon in the same incident. Prosecutors said Lee had been trying to dispose of the .38-caliber revolver used in the shooting.