Trial for Kenosha man charged in April triple homicide begins Monday | Local News

The shooting of three Kenosha men and the wounding of three others outside the Somers House Tavern in April will be reenacted on Monday in a courtroom in Kenosha County in a jury trial against the alleged shooter.

Rakayo Vinson, 25, of the 6000 block on 25th Avenue, faces three counts of first degree willful homicide and three counts of attempted first degree murder, each with life imprisonment.

The jury selection begins at 9:00 a.m. before District Judge Bruce E. Schroeder.

Vinson charged with shooting Kenosha resident Cedric D. Gaston, 24; Atkeem D. Stevenson, 26; and Kevin T. Donaldson, 22. He has been held on $ 4 million in cash since his first appearance on April 21 before Commissioner Larry Keating in the Kenosha County Jail.

During a brief final pre-trial hearing on Friday afternoon in front of Schröder, both sides ironed out details at the last minute for what is expected to be a week-long trial.

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Kenosha County District Attorney Mike Graveley, who will be pursuing the case with Assistant District Attorney Rosa Delgado, asked Schroeder to keep things safe during what is likely to be a very emotional day.

“The families of the deceased have a lot of passion and emotion,” said Graveley. “(Asking for more security) would be appropriate just so that the emotions don’t get too high. Whatever the best security practices we can have (highly recommended). “

Schroeder said the Kenosha County sheriff’s department responsible for the security of the courthouse will be notified.

Prosecutor and Vinsons defense attorney Donald Bielski will select a jury of 16 people from a pool of 30. Both sides can eliminate up to seven jurors during the selection process, which is expected to close on Monday.

Graveley said the state’s witness list ranged from 25 to 30 people. Bielski told Schröder his list is similar, but there are some that appear on both lists. A video compilation from that night’s events is also expected to be used as evidence.

Opening statements should begin on Tuesday at 9 a.m.

Alleged trigger: shoulder thrust

Graveley testified during Vinson’s bond hearing after his arrest that the shooting began with a “minor argument”, a shoulder bump, in the busy Somers House Tavern at 1548 Sheridan Road.

The shooting occurred around 12:40 p.m. in a crowded bar, “so full you could hardly move,” said Graveley. Vinson and someone else are said to have shoved their shoulders.

Officials released information on Monday about the shooting at Somers House tavern near Kenosha, in which three people were killed and three injured.

Vinson and Donaldson then engaged in a physical fight – Vinson was beaten during the altercation – which led the tavern owner to kick Donaldson, Gaston and Stevenson out. At that point, the owner took Vinson into the bathroom “to calm him down and then took him to the patio area after the fight,” said Detective Jason Sielski of the Kenosha County Sheriff during Vinson’s preliminary hearing on July 9th.

The owner asked another man to keep an eye on Vinson while he went to see if all three men had left. Sielski said Gaston and Stevenson did not go and were outside on the terrace. At that time, they reportedly came up to Vinson and said, “What’s wrong?” Vinson reportedly said “You know what’s going on,” pulled out a handgun and started shooting, Sielski said.

Authorities believe Gaston was shot first; His body was found on the doorstep when the police arrived. A witness then saw Vinson shoot Stevenson. Vinson and Donaldson exchanged shots, according to the display on the east side of Sheridan Road.

Three other men, including the one who was supposed to guard Vinson, were shot dead at the counter, one in the arm, one in the chest and one in the abdomen. Sielski testified that none of the three appeared to have been targeted but were hit by bullets aimed at Stevenson and Gaston.

The video showed Vinson jumping over a fence from the patio into the parking lot. His wallet was found by investigators where he jumped over the fence. He was arrested later that day after a relative reported that he had taken the family member’s vehicle without permission.

Fight in prison

Vinson was charged in October after an alleged October 9 brawl in prison on charges of bodily harm by a prisoner and of misconduct and violation of county facility laws.

MPs began the investigation after another inmate had stabbed his tongue. This inmate, who was also charged for his role, said he bit his tongue during a fight with Vinson.

IN PHOTOS: Pictures from the Somers House shooting scene

Investigation at Somers House

Investigators confer outside Somers House Tavern, 1548 Sheridan Road on April 18, after three people were killed and three others injured. The trial of Rakayo Vinson, who was charged with the shooting, begins Monday morning in Kenosha District Court Judge Bruce E. Schroeder.


FILE PHOTO, Kenosha News

Shootout at Somers House

Shootout at Somers House

An investigator searches for evidence outside Somers House Tavern, 1548 Sheridan Road, on April 18, after three people were killed and three others shot. The jury trial of Rakayo Vinson, 25, who was charged in the shootings, will begin with a jury selection at 9 a.m. on Monday


FILE PHOTO, Kenosha News

MPs deliberate outside Somers House

MPs deliberate outside Somers House

Kenosha County Sheriff’s Deputies are conferring on Sunday morning outside the Somers House Tavern on Highway 32, where or nearly five people were shot dead early that morning. Three were killed.


DENEEN SMITH, Kenosha News

Somers House crime scene

Somers House crime scene

Evidence and police tape were in abundance on Sunday in front of Somers House tavern and down at 15th Square, where shots were fired early Sunday. Three people were killed and three injured in the early Sunday morning shooting


Deneen Smith, Kenosha News

Fire scene in Somers House

Fire scene in Somers House

The Kenosha County Sheriff’s Criminal Police Unit and the Racine Fire Bells emergency canteen were among the many emergency vehicles that were on the scene at the Somers House crime scene on Sunday morning.


DENEEN SMITH, Kenosha News Photo

Somers House Shoot

Somers House Shoot

Investigators reported the Somers House Tavern, 1548 Sheridan Road, on April 18, where three Kenosha men were shot and three others were wounded. Rakayo Vinson, 25, will appear in the shootings starting Monday morning before Kenosha County Judge Bruce E. Schroeder.


FILE PHOTO, Kenosha News

Shooting scene at Somers House

Shooting scene at Somers House

This was the scene looking north on Sheridan Road (Highway 32) in Somers on Sunday morning, where there was a large police presence in and near the Somers House Tavern, where three people were killed and two injured in a Sunday morning shooting became.


DAN TRUTTSCHEL, Kenosha News

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