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Judge rules north Idaho teen will face murder charge as adult

Idaho

LEWISTON (AP) — A judge has ordered a 16-year-old boy stand trial as an adult on a murder charge after police believe he was involved in a home invasion and fatal shooting in Lewiston earlier this year.

Nez Perce County Magistrate Judge Michelle Evans said Tuesday that there was probable cause to believe that Demetri X. Ewing was one of the two people who rode bikes from a motel on Jan. 8 to a home in Lewiston, broke in, shot Samuel Johns, then rode back to the motel, The Lewiston Tribune reported Wednesday.

Magistrate Judge Sunil Ramalingam made the same determination on Friday after a preliminary hearing for Ewing’s father, Clyde K. Ewing, 43. Nez Perce County Prosecutor Justin Coleman said Tuesday that his office is considering filing a motion to join the two cases.

Greg Rauch is representing Demetri X. Ewing, and Rick Cuddihy is representing Clyde Ewing.

Rauch on Tuesday challenged the credibility of Patricia Labombard, who testified that two people dressed head-to-toe in dark clothing broke into Johns’ home, held her at gunpoint and attempted to restrain her with zip ties while the shooting happened in another room.

Labombard testified that she, Johns and two other people were smoking marijuana before the shooting, and Rauch questioned whether she could rely on her memory. Labombard said she could.

Rauch also questioned Labombard about her statements to police that the person who held her at gunpoint sounded like a young girl and was about 4 or 5 inches (10 or 12 centimeters) taller than Ewing.

Lewiston Police Department Detective Brian Erickson said an Idaho State Police crime lab report found a shell casing in a backpack in the Ewings’ motel room matched the shell casings found at the murder scene.

Rauch objected to the admission of that report, but the judge overruled the objection.

Evans also found that video surveillance shows a cohesive progression and timeline of two darkly dressed people leaving the area near the Ewings’ motel room on bikes. Rauch also unsuccessfully objected to the video evidence.

Demetri Ewing is scheduled for arraignment on Wednesday. Clyde Ewing is scheduled for arraignment on Thursday.

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