Emotional testimony on trial's opening day

By Tara Morgan - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - Rose Matko left the courthouse Monday after court adjourned surrounded by loved ones. She was the first to take the stand in the trial of 18 year old Detavis King. He's charged with first degree murder and felony use of a firearm in the August 2007 death of 16 year old Ryan Matko.

Rose Matko testified the last time she saw her son alive was the morning of August 22. She expected him at work at her cafe later that day. But got concerned when she tried his cell phone and it went straight to voicemail.

Rose told jurors she went home and couldn't find a shoebox that had been hidden in Ryan's room. A box she'd been keeping close tabs on after finding it a month before with more than $400 in cash, and drug paraphernalia.

Ryan's body was found the evening of August 23. He'd been shot twice, once in the back and once in the head. Prosecutors say two young men who worked with King that summer saw in King's possession what they believe is the murder weapon.

A forensic investigator testified he took castings of footprints at the crime scene. That witness placed one of King's sneaker's on top of the impression for jurors to see. Deborah Best, who lost her son Derek in a shooting in January 07, says she's helping Rose get through this difficult time.

"I feel and share her pain and grief and we've been best friends ever since we talk every day and look at each other and know and cry and try to be strong for each other," said Deborah Best.

Testimony resumes Tuesday morning at ten. The prosecution called seven witnesses so far. They were expected to call 20, total. The defense said it would not call any witnesses in this case.

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