LAWTON, OK (KSWO) - The murder trial of a Lawton man opened Tuesday with eyewitness testimony from the victim's wife.
Marquise Rasco is charged with first-degree murder, assault with a deadly weapon and robbery with a weapon from the 2015 shooting death of Karl Huffmaster. Prosecutors say Rasco broke into Huffmaster's house to steal money and drugs before shooting his wife, Kelley, in the hand and shooting Karl in the chest, killing him. Rasco was arrested nearly 2 months after the shooting after DNA evidence connected him to the crime. Tuesday, Kelley Huffmaster and 10 others took the stand to testify in the trial.
Huffmaster told the story of how a black man kicked in her door and held a gun to her head, telling her he was there to retrieve money for someone named "Lil Rob". That's when she said her husband came out of the bathroom and tried to stop the man.
Huffmaster said the man, who was wearing a hoodie that covered most of his face except for a sliver around his nose, then shot her in the hand and shot Karl in the chest before running away. Later, Kelley identified that man in a police lineup as Marquis Rasco.
In cross-examination, defense attorney Larry Monard focused heavily on that police lineup, mentioning that Kelley seemed unsure while choosing a suspect, even asking the police if she was allowed to choose two of the men on the hit. Kelley said she simply wanted to ensure she picked the man who was really responsible.
The defense also brought up past domestic issues between Kelley and Karl, which Kelley said had not been for several years, and questioned how Kelley knew what type of weapon was used to kill Karl. Kelley said she knew it was a 9 mm pistol because while she was trying to tell the dispatch operator what type of gun it was, Karl whispered the word "nine" to her.
Lawton Police Detective Fernando Diaz walked the jury through the crime scene evidence, which included a hoodie that was found a few blocks away from the crime scene and a pair of shoes found at the crime scene, both believed by prosecutors to be owned by Rasco. In cross-examination, Monard questioned why blood samples were taken from the shoes and the hoodie, but none of the blood on the floor at the scene was tested. Diaz said he did not have a definitive answer for that, but said they did test the blood on the shoes, one of which had been found right next to the blood on the floor.