ELYRIA – Nick Masley lured Jeffrey Brooks to the Colonial Oaks trailer park with the intention of beating him up, a beating that ultimately took his life, according to prosecutors.
Opening statements in the trial of Masley, 27, of Elyria, took place this morning in the courtroom of Judge James Miraldi. Masley is accused of murder and felonious assault in connection with the 2013 death of Brooks, 25, of Wellington.
While the state contends Masley intentionally lured Brooks to the residence, defense attorney Kenneth Lieux said Masley wanted to find out what was going on with his cousin, Kayla Ellis, who was engaged to Brooks. Lieux said Masley suspected Brooks had gotten Ellis addicted to heroin.
While Brooks and Ellis were at the residence, Masley believed he had confirmed his suspicions when he tried to get into a bathroom Brooks and Ellis were in, Lieux said. Through the partially open door, Masley said he could see heroin.
When Brooks later was walking out of the residence and down the porch stairs, Masley punched him in the face, knocking him unconscious. Witnesses say Masley then punched Brooks two more times.
Brooks’ right eye was swollen and his nose was bleeding when police were called, and he complained of pain in his head. Brooks told police he had used heroin about two hours before Masley assaulted him.
Brooks was taken to what is now University Hospitals Elyria Medical Center and later to MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland. He died two days after the assault.
Testimony in the trial began this morning and is scheduled to resume this afternoon.
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