Powell guilty of 2015 murder in long-delayed legal case

Published: Sep. 17, 2021 at 4:40 PM CDT
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - A jury found 34-year-old Antwon Powell guilty of 1st Degree Intentional Homicide, taking only four hours to wrap up what may be the most-delayed murder trial in Brown County history. The jury received the case at about 11:30 A.M. Friday There were requests for exhibits, and shortly after 3:30 P.M. the court announced the jury reached a verdict.

Powell was also convicted on a charge of being a felon in possession of a firearm. He was acquitted on a reckless endangerment charge.

Powell will be sentenced in December, about six years after the murder of David Shorter.

Powell was accused of shooting the 32-year-old Shorter to death on December 3, 2015. According to prosecutors, Shorter broke into Powell’s home and stole $400 and a quarter-pound of high grade marijuana. Later that night, Shorter was shot outside his duplex in the 800 block of Bellevue Street. Shorter crawled back into his home and died later at the hospital. Powell was arrested the next day but wasn’t charged until late January, 2016.

As Action 2 News has reported, Powell has made dozens of court appearances since charges were filed 68 months ago. He fired several attorneys. Some lawyers withdrew from the case. Powell asked for adjournments. In 2019, he agreed to an Alford Plea, in which he would admit there was enough evidence for a jury to find him guilty but maintain his innocence, then withdrew that plea three days before a sentencing recommendation report was due.

This past May, Powell’s defense attorney filed a motion asking to delay the trial again, arguing prosecutors haven’t provided the defense with certain evidence and that he wasn’t prepared for trial. The attorney, Michael Balskus, argued, “I understand the point that the victims have rights. However, they don’t trump the rights of the defendant.” Prosecutors were adamant they offered all evidence to Powell’s attorney.

Debra Armstrong, Shorter’s mother, pleaded with the court at that May hearing, “I believe this case has been going on too long. The boy’s just playing the courts. He knows what he’s doing. It’s time to get this thing over with.”

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