Crump trial delayed

Facing charges for death of Rowan Sweeney

YOUNGSTOWN — Brandon Crump Jr., 20, one of the three defendants in the Rowan Sweeney killing, will not be having a jury trial Monday.

Judge Anthony D’Apolito filed an entry Wednesday stating that Crump’s trial is postponed from Monday to Nov. 13. Crump’s attorney, Lou DeFabio, and prosecutors requested the postponement at a Sept. 21 pretrial hearing, the entry states.

The postponement came the same day that co-defendant Kimonie Bryant, 26, had a pretrial hearing in the case, and Judge D’Apolito set a deadline for pretrial motions to be filed in Bryant’s case for Nov. 1 so that such issues can be resolved in time for Bryant to go to trial Jan. 8.

Also at the Bryant hearing, attorney John Juhasz, who represents Bryant, said he and his co-counsel, Lynn Maro, are still reviewing new evidence they received in recent months.

And when Judge D’Apolito asked Juhasz and Mike Yacovone, assistant county prosector, whether they had made any progress or held any negotiations toward a plea agreement, Yacovone said the “lines of communication are open” between prosecutors and the defense.

There was mention of plea negotiations in the Bryant case as far back as July, but Juhasz said then it is necessary to complete their review of all of the newest evidence first before engaging in negotiations.

The third defendant, Andre McCoy Jr., 23, pleaded guilty Aug. 9 to a reduced charge of murder, and prosecutors will recommend that he serve 15 years to life in prison.

Sweeney, 4, was killed Sept. 21, 2020, in a home on Perry Street in Struthers when a man with a hooded sweatshirt pulled up around his face shot him to death and injured four adults in the home at the time. Authorities have said they suspect the episode began as a robbery.

Initially, Bryant was considered to be the shooter in the case, but when DNA evidence was analyzed it suggested that it was Crump, who was 17 at the time of the killing.


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