District attorney, convicted killer vie in high court

Photo by J.D. Sumner

Photo by J.D. Sumner

ALBANY, Ga. -- A man convicted of gunning down another man in an Albany street in 2005 is asking the state Supreme Court to overturn his conviction, arguing there was insufficient evidence to warrant a conviction.

Nathanial Taylor was convicted of shooting Lewis Anthony West in 2005.

Taylor and Dougherty Judicial Circuit District Attorney Greg Edwards argued their prospective points before the justices of the Georgia Supreme Court Monday.

According to the court, West staggered to a bystander and said he had been shot by "Freddy B," according to the bystander's testimony in Taylor's trial.

A police officer later testified that West had told him that either "Freddy B" or "Reddy B" had shot him.

According to prosecutors, Taylor's street name was "Reddy B," and West had allegedly robbed Taylor of marijuana several weeks prior to the shooting.

According to the court, police later learned that witnesses present in the area on the day of the shooting recalled seeing a man they knew as "Main" in the area. "Main," according to prosecutors, was the street name of Taylor's co-defendant, Marquel Wooden.

Taylor's appeal is based on the fact that the trial court erred when it failed to instruct jurors on circumstantial evidence and that Taylor had ineffective counsel during his trial when his lawyer failed to demand proper jury instruction.

Taylor's appellate attorney argued that the only direct evidence was testimony offered from a cellmate of Taylor's while he was in the Dougherty County Jail, which wasn't credible.

The state contends that it had more than a solid case, arguing that Taylor's conviction was set up not only by the witness' testimony but also by the "dying declaration" of the victim himself, according to the court.