Trial starts for 3rd defendant in Newark schoolyard killings

Opening statements began today in the trial of one of six men charged in the brutal killings of three Newark friends in 2007.Alexander Alfaro, now

NEWARK - Opening statements began today in the trial of one of six men charged in the brutal killings of three Newark friends in 2007.

Alexander Alfaro, now 20, is facing three counts of murder and one count of attempted murder. Earlier today, Assistant Prosecutor Thomas McTigue painted as visual of a picture as possible of the crime for the 11 men and five women on the jury.

Dashon Harvey, Terrance Aeriel and Iofemi Hightower were shot execution-style during the brutal attack. Aeriel's sister, 19-year-old Natasha Aeriel, was also shot in the head, but survived.

According to investigators, Alfaro used a machete on at least one of the victims. At another defendant's trial last year, jurors saw autopsy pictures of the gruesome attack.

Melvin Jovel admitted to being the gunman days before his trial in September. Alfaro's half-brother, Rodolfo Godinez, was convicted last spring. Both received multiple life terms.

Jury selection begins for 3rd Newark schoolyard killings suspect Melvin Jovel gets life in prison for Newark schoolyard killings Man faces sentencing for Newark schoolyard killings Man admits role in Newark schoolyard slayings Court voids statement in NJ schoolyard slayingsCommunity praises sentence in Newark schoolyard killingsTestimony concludes in NJ triple slay trial Jurors hear from weapons experts in NJ triple slay New details may emerge in Newark schoolyard killings Schoolyard killings jury sees crime scene evidence Survivor to testify in Newark schoolyard murdersTrial begins in Newark schoolyard slayings Trial set for April in Newark schoolyard slayings Newark schoolyard slaying suspects hear charges

AP wire services contributed to this report.

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