TOMS RIVER - Jurors listened today to testimony of a Lakewood couple who described watching a young man shoot a Lakewood police officer to death last year as he sat behind the wheel of his patrol car.
Denise and Leonard Scalzo said they had just arrived home and witnessed patrolman Christopher Matlosz drive up to a young man near their house. They both described watching the suspect pull out a gun, lean into the patrol car and fire three shots.
The husband identified 20-year-old Jahmell Crockam in court as the shooter. Crockam is charged with the murder of the 27-year-old police officer.
Prosecutors say the defendant had vowed several times to friends that he would sooner kill a police officer than go to jail.
The defense has argued that there is no evidence linking Crockam to the shooting. Crockam's lawyer says police arrested the wrong man, predicting none of the prosecution's witnesses will be able to reliably identify Crockam as the shooter.
The defense also questioned the 911 call that was placed by Scalzo, where he said he heard three shots fired instead of that he saw three shots fired. The defense asked if he said heard because he didn't really see the shooting. Scalzo stuck to his account.
The jury was given tomorrow off, and the trial won't resume until Monday afternoon. Prosecutor: Man killed cop to avoid going to jail