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Jury acquits man in Eastern Michigan player death

Published on NewsOK Modified: July 28, 2014 at 7:23 pm •  Published: July 28, 2014
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ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — A jury on Monday acquitted a man in the robbery-slaying of Eastern Michigan University football player Demarius Reed.

The Washtenaw County Circuit Court jury reached the not guilty verdict in the trial of Ed Thomas, 21, one of two men charged in the slaying of the 20-year-old wide receiver from Chicago.

The other man charged, Kristopher Pratt, 20, accepted a deal and pleaded guilty to second-degree murder, testifying that he shot Reed and Thomas participated in the Oct. 18 robbery.

The jury acquitted Thomas on open murder, armed robber and conspiracy charges.

"I'm surprised and disappointed," Ypsilanti police Lt. Thomas Eberts, one of the lead investigators of the killing, told The Ann Arbor News. "I believe we had the right person."

In closing arguments Monday, Assistant Prosecutor Nimish Ganatra said Thomas was just as guilty as the admitted triggerman, Pratt, who was a key witness against Thomas.

Ganatra said Thomas spotted Reed and pointed him out to Pratt. Thomas handed Pratt the gun that he used to kill Reed, Ganatra said.

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