ELYRIA — Ivan Brooks had known Terrence Taylor for more than a few months before he allegedly gunned him down at the home of Taylor’s girlfriend, who had two children with Brooks from a prior relationship.
Brooks, 34, of Lorain, appeared Tuesday morning in Elyria Municipal Court for a preliminary hearing. He was charged with murder in the March 19 shooting death of 45-year-old Taylor.
After hearing testimony, Judge Robert White ruled that there was probable cause for the case and bound it over for a grand jury to consider. He also denied a motion by Brooks’ defense attorney to reduce bond, keeping it at $1.5 million due to the defendant “being a flight risk.”
The girlfriend, Bianca Tavarez, testified that she was asleep with her young son on the couch on the first floor of the home the night of the incident when she heard a knock at the front door a little after 2:30 a.m. Tavarez said she got up and looked out the window to see who was knocking, but she didn’t see anyone on the front porch, so she went back to the couch and tried to go back to sleep.
A few minutes later, there was another knock at the front door, and this time Taylor, who was sleeping in a bedroom on the second floor, came down the stairs to see what was going on. He and Tavarez approached the door, which Taylor opened. He then opened the screen door and stopped, Tavarez said.
“Who is that?” Taylor asked a moment before gunshots erupted, going through the screen door and striking Taylor several times. Tavarez testified that she saw Brooks on the porch and saw him shoot Taylor.
Taylor stepped back into the home, and he and Tavarez closed the door before he collapsed in front of a staircase.
“He was lying on the floor, and he was breathing real hard,” Tavarez said. “He then stopped breathing.”
She called 911 and police arrived minutes later to find Taylor dead on the floor between the front doorway and the staircase leading to the second floor, a detective testified.
During the hearing, the recording of the 911 call made by Tavarez was played. In it she could be heard screaming at a dispatcher to send someone to her home at 841 Broad St. because her boyfriend had been shot. In the call, she identified Brooks as the shooter.
After the shooting, police said Brooks left the state as Elyria and Lorain police and the U.S. Marshals Service Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force searched for him. Testimony said the U.S. Marshals got a lead that Brooks was in Georgia, but were unable to pick him up there. He eventually turned himself into police in Hamilton County in southern Ohio on March 28.
Brooks is on parole from an Ohio prison, where he had spent much of the last seven years on multiple felony charges