CHARLESTON -- A jury is in place to decide if Shawn D. Adamson is guilty of causing Ciara Faires' death, though he didn't fire the gun that killed her.
Jury selection was completed Monday, setting Tuesday (Feb. 6) for the start of evidence for Adamson's trial on charges of first-degree murder and other offenses related to Faires' shooting death.
The charges against Adamson, 35, are based on the confrontation he allegedly started at an apartment at 313 S. 21st St., Mattoon, on June 18, 2016.
It led the other man involved in the confrontation, James Todd Shafer, to fire a gun with one shot hitting Faires and causing fatal injuries. Adamson's trial comes just days after the conclusion of the one for Shafer, 26, who was convicted of first-degree murder and other offenses.
On Monday, Circuit Judge Matt Sullivan informed the group of prospective jurors of the charges against Adamson. The judge said Adamson is accused of committing other crimes that "proximately caused" Faires death.
A total of 42 jurors were questioned by Sullivan and the case's attorneys to select the group that will decide the case.
Jurors excused Monday included some who said the recent news reports from Shafer's trial led them to form an opinion about the case.
Some others said they knew Faires or her family and others excused included those who said they would believe police officer testimony over that of other witnesses.
The first-degree murder charges against Adamson accuse him of attempted armed robbery, leading Shafer to fire the shot that killed Faires, and of mob action for allegedly recruiting two others to help him confront Shafer.
Evidence during Shafer's trial indicated that Adamson and the other men, Matthew S. Cook and Kevin W. Johnson, might have been looking for Shafer to retrieve a gun he was given for a robbery but didn't return.
Shafer and Faires, who was Shafer's girlfriend, went to the 21st Street apartment, where a friend lived, as part of Shafer's attempt to elude the other men, the evidence showed.
When Adamson and other others arrived, Shafer fired a gun after he saw or thought he saw a person outside the apartment, possibly Adamson, fire a gun while knocking on the apartment door, according to evidence previously presented.
Faires had left the apartment because of some kind of argument that had taken place, the evidence indicated. But she was still outside when Shafer fired the gun from inside through the apartment door and was hit by one shot, it showed.
Adamson is also charged with attempted armed robbery for allegedly trying to take property, the gun, from Shafer by the use of force and while armed with a gun.
There's also a conspiracy charge accusing him of agreeing with Johnson and Cook to try to take the gun. He's also charged with possession of a weapon by a felon for allegedly having the gun though his criminal record made that illegal.
Sullivan told the jury on Monday that the trial is expected to last until at least early next week.
Coles County State's Attorney Brian Bower and Assistant State's Attorney Rob Scales are prosecuting and Todd Ringel and Doug Johnson are Adamson's attorneys.
A prison sentence of at least 40 years would be required if Adamson's convicted of first-degree murder. He's been jailed since his arrest shortly after the incident.
Cook and Johnson testified during Shafer's trial, with both claiming they weren't directly involved in the confrontation, and they're on the list of possible witnesses for Adamson's trial.
Both men pleaded guilty earlier to reduced charges in connection with the incident that, at the time, Bower said better reflected their involvement.