Posting will probably be light on Cops and Courts this week, as I’m following the deliberate homicide trial of Raymond Big Beaver (in photo). He and a fellow transient, Eugene “Joey” Gonzalez, are accused of killing a third resident of Missoula’s streets, Johnny Joe Belmarez.
There were some interesting twists in the first day of testimony yesterday:
The trial of Raymond Big Beaver in the back-alley beatdown that allegedly killed fellow transient Johnny Joe Belmarez opened Monday with testimony about a confession in the homicide case.
But that man was Eugene “Joey” Gonzalez, Big Beaver’s co-defendant in the case, whose own trial is scheduled for November.
Each man faces a deliberate homicide charge in Belmarez’s death – which at first wasn’t even classified as a homicide.
“There are no smoking guns,” public defender Chris Abbott told the six-woman, six-man jury in his opening remarks. “There are no certainties.”
Stay tuned for updates.
(Image: Missoulian/Tom Bauer)