HILLSBOROUGH — Closing arguments in the murder case against Brian Minton will be heard Monday after his attorney and prosecutors spent Friday morning hashing out the charges he will face.
Defense attorney James Glover said there’s no doubt Minton drove 20-year-old Josh Bailey to the murder site against his will, but Minton did not shoot Bailey. He does not deserve to be convicted of first-degree murder, felony murder or first-degree kidnapping, Glover said.
Superior Court Judge Orlando Hudson dismissed the jurors just before noon Friday, telling them the month-long trial is close to finished.
“I don’t think we could get the case fairly tried today,” he said. “I do think we could give the case fairly to you on Monday.”
The jury might have to stay late Monday to hear both closing arguments, which are expected to take several hours, and the judge’s instructions, Hudson said. But jurors shouldn’t feel pressured to come up with a verdict right away, he said.
“You’ve been with us for over a month; I don’t have to tell you about the importance of the trial,” Hudson said.
Minton is one of six men charged with kidnapping and killing Bailey in a wooded area northwest of Carrboro. Two men who pleaded guilty to lesser charges testified against Minton.
Prosecutors allege Minton was the ringleader in Bailey’s murder and in the subsequent assault and kidnapping of Matt Johnson, who has admitted shooting Bailey. The prosecution’s last witness testified Thursday morning, wrapping up nearly three weeks of testimony from more than two dozen witnesses.