Jacksonville, Florida

From Jacksonville, Florida of August 29, 2007

Jury acquits murder suspect; man killed in self-defense

A Jacksonville man facing a life sentence in prison was found innocent Wednesday of murdering a man during a struggle outside his girlfriend’s apartment.

Shedrick Cosby, 34, was arrested in December after the shooting death of Shelly Banks. Police charged that Cosby shot in a jealous rage after seeing two men leaving his girlfriend’s apartment on Old Kings Road South in the Southside.

Cosby, whose face and neck were severely cut with a knife, testified he shot in self-defense after someone jumped him from behind and held him in a headlock. Cosby was a security guard at Forrest High School and had a permit to carry a concealed firearm, said Assistant Public Defender Debra Billard.

Billard said Cosby fired two shots blindly, and that evidence showed one bullet passed through a door before hitting Banks. The other bullet struck the apartment building’s second story, she said.

She said the fact that just two bullets and two casings were recovered also contradicted testimony by prosecution witnesses, who described a larger number of shots being fired.

The six-person jury deliberated about three hours.


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