Judge gives defendant in Cape Girardeau murder case more time to find lawyer

Thursday, July 29, 2010

The Cape Girardeau County judge presiding over the case of a Bellwood, Ill., man charged in the June 26 shooting death of Matthew "Woody" Ervin continued the case last week to give the defendant time to hire a lawyer.

Thomas D. Evans Jr., 20, first appeared before Associate Circuit Judge Gary A. Kamp on July 6 and again July 22, when he appeared for the second time without counsel.

Evans' case was continued to Aug. 12 so he could have more time to find money to hire a lawyer.

"He's in that limbo phase where he claims he's going to have enough money to get a lawyer and hasn't got the public defender yet," said Morley Swingle, Cape Girardeau County prosecuting attorney. "They're still giving him time. ... It's unusual."

Ervin was found dead at the intersection of Fountain Street and Park Drive by Cape Girardeau police. Autopsy results showed he had been shot a close range, about two feet.

Evans was allegedly staying at Ervin's residence. When he was first confronted by police four days after Ervin was found dead, he gave a false name and claimed he knew nothing about the murder. According to a probable-cause affidavit filed in the case, Evans admitted to shooting Ervin after stains from his tennis shoes tested positive for blood.

His Aug. 12 hearing is set for 11 a.m.

ehevern@semissourian.com

388-3635

Pertinent address:

Fountain Street and Park Drive, Cape Girardeau, MO

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