James Michael Campbell, an 18-year-old Northeast man indicted last year in connection with the brutal gang murder of Catherine Fuller, will stand trial alone in June for his alleged participation in the slaying for which eight men were convicted last month.
In a status hearing yesterday, D.C. Superior Court Judge Robert M. Scott set a trial date of June 9 for Campbell, who has been held in protective custody at D.C. Jail pending completion of the first trial.
Campbell was scheduled to be tried with the others but his case was severed from the trial when, at the last minute, lawyer Elise Haldane asked to be removed as Campbell's defense attorney.
Campbell was one of the last of 16 persons arrested in the case. He was indicted by a grand jury last August along with other members of a loosely knit street gang called the "Eighth and H Street Crew" on charges of felony murder, kidnaping, armed robbery and murder while armed.
Police alleged that Campbell and others participated in beating and kicking Catherine Fuller to death during a robbery in an alley near her Northeast home.
Frederick Douglas, Campbell's new lawyer, said yesterday that Campbell has maintained his innocence in the slaying and rejected offers of a plea bargaining agreement with government prosecutors.
According to court papers filed by the U.S. attorney's office, Campbell told witnesses that he was present at the time of the murder and received jewelry that was taken from Fuller. Prosecutors said Campbell also made a videotaped statement to police.