02/10/2020 - U.S. Expert News: Cellphone Expert Witness Allowed in Shooting Death of Trevice Harris, 37.

YOUNGSTOWN — The aggravated murder and aggravated robbery trial of Lavontae Knight formerly scheduled for Monday has been advanced to May 4th to allow Knight’s attorney time to work with an expert witness to evaluate cellphone evidence. At the end of a pretrial hearing Monday, Judge John Durkin of Mahoning County Common Pleas Court ruled that he would allow attorney David Betras to hire an expert witness to provide assistance, and testimony if necessary, on a cellphone and electronic data from it. Police recovered a cellphone in January 2019. Cantalamessa, though, said the number of the phone in question came up identified as “Slim” on the phone of Knight’s co-defendant George Guiterres, 29. “Slim” is Knight’s nickname, Cantalamessa said.

Moving the case to May 4 th means that another murder case for Knight, 24, will be pushed back again. Knight was scheduled to go on trial May 4 — also before Durkin — in the Dec. 30, 2018, shooting death of Trevice Harris, 37. Betras claims prosecutors will try to link the phone to calls made to Gutierres, who pleaded guilty in December to reduced charges in the murder case. Gutierres is expected to testify when Knight goes on trial Feb. 10 in Durkin’s courtroom.

Trevice Harris and a woman were gunned down Dec. 30, 2018, as they sat in a car at a Market Street gas station. Attorneys for Knight, who faces 11 felony charges, had petitioned the court to move the date of the trial which was originally scheduled to begin in October.