General Crime

2012 Drug House Murder Trial Begins In Oakland

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A prosecutor told jurors today that a man fatally shot another man at a drug house in East Oakland in 2012 because he thought that he had disrespected him.

In his opening statement in the murder trial of Kenyus Walker, 35, in Alameda County Superior Court, prosecutor Glenn Kim said, “Billy Brooks apparently disrespected (Walker) and that’s why he got killed.”

Kim said that although Brooks, 39, lived in Pittsburg at the time of his death, he had grown up near the house at 2332 80th Ave. in Oakland where he was killed in the early morning hours of Sept. 25, 2012.

Kim said Brooks was in the area because he had picked up a prostitute near the Eastmont Mall and had gone to the prostitute’s nearby home, where he had sex with her and used cocaine with her.

The prostitute then wanted to get some heroin, so Brooks took her to the drug house at 2332 80th Ave. because he knew the people who lived and did business there, Kim said.

Kim said Walker was the grandson of the woman who owned the house and acted as the armed security guard at the house, which the prosecutor described as “a place where people sold drugs, bought drugs and did drugs.”

However, Brooks hadn’t been to the house for many years and didn’t know Walker, who formerly lived out of state and hadn’t been there when Brooks frequented the house, Kim said.

Walker recognized the prostitute but asked her who Brooks was, Kim said.

Brooks then responded by asking Walker who he was and telling Walker “this is my house” because he was close to the people who ran the drug operation, according to Kim.

The situation calmed down briefly, but the argument rekindled and Walker shot Brooks after the victim said, “If you’re going to shoot me, then shoot me,” the prosecutor said.

The prostitute and other people who were at the house didn’t actually see Walker shoot Brooks, but they heard the gunshot and saw Walker with a shotgun immediately afterward, Kim said.

Walker, whose nickname is “Nephew,” then left the house and took the shotgun with him, telling the other people at the house, “You’d better not say anything,” Kim said.

The prosecutor said the man who ran the drug operation at the house was 42-year-old Karnell Marshall. When Marshall came out of his room and saw Brooks’ dead body, he was upset and said, “He was like family to me” and said that they went to Castlemont High School in East Oakland together.

Kim said Marshall was upset that Walker hadn’t consulted him before shooting Brooks, but then he and three other people who lived at the house wrapped Brooks’ body in a tarp, dumped it in Brooks’ Chevrolet Malibu and then drove the car several blocks and parked it in the 2400 block of Ritchie Street, near Arroyo Viejo Park.

Brooks’ body wasn’t found until Oct. 7, 2012, two weeks later, when area residents noticed “a foul odor” coming from the car and notified police, Kim said.

However, the case remained unsolved until February 2013, when the prostitute, who had been arrested in an unrelated case, told police what had happened because Brooks’ death had been bothering her, Kim said.

Marshall and the other three people who helped dispose of Brooks’ body have all pleaded guilty to being accessories after the fact and are expected to testify against Walker, according to Kim.

But Walker’s lawyer, Thomas Broome, told jurors not to believe Marshall and the other prosecution witnesses, saying that they’re convicted felons and drug dealers who have a motive to lie because they want to “cover up their own criminal activity.”

Broome said that at the end of the case, he will ask jurors to find Walker not guilty of murder because, “There’s zero evidence that Kenyus Walker committed the crime” except for what as he described as the unreliable statements of the prosecution’s witnesses.

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