Wilson Murder Trial Set for April Despite Lingering Motion from Previous Council

By Jeremy Coumbes on March 16, 2024 at 12:37pm

A Jacksonville man facing first-degree murder charges in Morgan County is still on course to see his day in court next month.

40-year old Joshua Wilson appeared in Morgan County Court Friday morning for a status hearing. He is facing three counts of first-degree murder in the February 2021 shooting death of 26-year-old Malcolm V. Fitts in the parking lot of the Turner High Rise Apartment complex.

Visiting Macoupin County Judge Kenneth Diehl presided over the hearing via Zoom Meeting from Macoupin County due to scheduling issues. Morgan County State’s Attorney Gray Noll says, aside from one issue that still needs to be resolved, the trial remains on pace to go to trial in late April.

There was one issue that was brought up in regard to an outstanding motion to suppress that Mister Wilson’s previous attorney had filed. That still either needs to be ruled on or withdrawn. Other than that issue, I think the parties are both ready to proceed.”

Wilson’s former attorney, Marcus Shantz of Springfield, filed a motion to suppress certain state’s evidence in April of last year. Shanz’s motion calls for the suppression of video from the Turner Highrise the night of the shooting due to time lapses totaling approximately 34 minutes of film time that the motion says is missing.

Noll said during the motion hearing that the cameras were motion-activated so no recordings were made during those 34 minutes.

During this morning’s hearing, State’s Attorney Noll said to his knowledge that the motion had not been ruled on, following Shantz’s withdrawal from the case last summer due to health reasons.

Morgan County Public Defender Devon Vaughn said he and his client needed to further discuss the previous motion, however, deciding whether to proceed with or withdraw it would not impede the trial. Noll says he and Vaughn will be meeting soon to discuss a number of details ahead of the trial, which at this time, is not being delayed.

The trial is set to begin on Tuesday, April 23rd. If convicted, Wilson faces between 20 years to natural life in prison.