Suspect in New Castle triple murder to stand trial after attorney asks for dismissal

Local News

A man charged in connection to a triple homicide in New Castle will stand trial.

The New Castle News reports that the attorney representing 20-year-old Anthony Lavon Cooper argued that Lawrence County prosecutors lack credible evidence against his client in the October 16 slayings.

Cooper and two other people face charges in the shooting deaths of 31-year-old Nichole Pumphrey, her 31-year-old boyfriend Lawrence Cannon, and her 10-year-old daughter, Amariah Emery. Four other young children in the home were unharmed. Authorities said Cooper was arrested after fleeing to Detroit.

Defense attorney Antonio Tuddles unsuccessfully sought dismissal of all charges Tuesday, arguing that although a co-defendant allegedly said his client was involved, a child eyewitness named someone else as the shooter.

Two others have been charged in connection to the murders. Jody Hammer and Stephen Procopio both face homicide charges. 

Police say the motive for the crime was a robbery planned by Hammer and Procopio.

The crime claimed the lives of 10-year-old Amariah Emery, 31-year-old Nichole Pumphrey and 31-year-old Lawrence Cannon.

According to a news release from police, officers learned that Procopio, Hammer and Cooper went to the house to rob the victims, but an argument started. During this time, Cooper shot Cannon and Pumphrey, according to police.

Police said Cooper then handed the weapon to Procopio after hearing people upstairs. Police said Procopio then shot Amariah Emery and attempted to shoot another child who ran back upstairs. 

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