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Outbursts interrupt trial in Austin man's killing

PHILADELPHIA — The trial of a man accused of gunning down an aspiring teacher from Austin, Minn., for his iPod weeks after he moved to Philadelphia is drawing to a close. But defendant Marcellus Jones is unhappy with how the court proceedings have been going.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that during the fifth day of his murder trial on Monday, Jones, 37, repeatedly interrupted the testimony.

"Hey, your honor. I'm innocent of this crime. I didn't have nothing to do with it, and I can definitely prove it," Jones said to Common Pleas Court Judge Rose Marie DeFino-Nastasi.

The Philadelphia man is charged with killing Beau Zabel, 23, in June 2008. Zabel was shot in the back of the neck as he walked home following his night shift at Starbucks. He was set to start teaching that fall, and had moved from Austin to Philadelphia six weeks before his death.

The newspaper reported that Jones also criticized his attorney, Richard J. Giuliani, for failing to present images from NASA satellites that he said would prove he didn't do it.


Another outburst came when Zabel's mother was called to the witness stand.

Jones got up from his chair and told a security officer, "Yo, man. I need to go out. I'm done with this."

At one point DeFino-Nastasi removed Jones from the courtroom.

Jones is currently serving life in prison for killing an alleged accomplice. Prosecutors said Jones killed Tyrek Taylor, 19, in 2008 because he had been talking about Jones "killing the teacher." Taylor was the suspected getaway driver.

Testimony in the case is expected to wrap up today. It's unclear if Jones will take the stand.

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