MIAMI – The mother of a 15-year-old Miami-Dade youngster accused of shooting and killing a 60-year-old rabbi in the summer of 2014 took the witness stand Wednesday on her son’s behalf.
Blair Charles, the mother of Deandre Charles, has told CBS4 news in the past that her son had an alibi and could not have committed the crime.
Defense attorney Adam Goodman is trying to see if Charles will be allowed out on bond before his trial.
Blair Charles testified at an Arthur hearing that will determine if that will happen.
Charles testified that her son like to “smoke weed” but did not commit crimes.
She also said he went to school regularly.
“He goes to school,” she testified. “He always goes to school but he has been late for school.”
Joseph Raksin, who was from New York, was visiting loved ones in South Florida and was walking to a synagogue in Northeast Miami-Dade when he was shot and killed during a botched robbery.
Investigators say cell phone records and DNA evidence tie Charles to the crime scene along with a witness who placed Charles near the scene.
Miami-Dade Police detective Michael Brajdic testified at the hearing and said to Goodman, “Every DNA sample taken comes back to your client.” He said the DNA was one of the reasons that Charles was “in handcuffs.”
He said the DNA evidence was analyzed by experts.
Brajdic was asked why it took so long to arrest Charles and charge him with first degree murder and attempted robbery with a deadly weapon.
“It is very important to take your time,” he said.
He also testified that there was DNA evidence on a weapon found at the scene. He also said Charles was “identified running away from the scene” by a witness.
The Arthur hearing continues Thursday. Goodman said he planned to call an expert on DNA testimony.