Trial postponed for murder suspect in trans case

Trial postponed for murder suspect in trans case

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A jury trial for Matthew J. White, charged with murdering the boyfriend of a West Philadelphia trans woman, has been postponed until July.

White allegedly killed Barry Jones and assaulted his girlfriend, Vivian Royster, inside Royster’s West Philly residence on Jan. 9, 2017. The motive remains unclear.

The day before the murder, White allegedly robbed three trans women inside their shared residence, also in West Philly.

White, 33, will be tried for murder, aggravated assault, robbery, reckless endangerment, burglary, possessing an instrument of a crime and related offenses. If he’s convicted of all charges, he faces life in prison.

Jones, 32, was shot multiple times, according to medical records.

“The cause of death was multiple gunshot wounds and the medical examiner classified the manner of death as a homicide,” confirmed James Garrow, a spokesperson for the city Medical Examiner’s Office, in an email.

A weeklong jury trial tentatively was scheduled to begin March 19. But during a March 14 hearing, defense attorney Eileen J. Hurley requested additional time to prepare the case.

Philadelphia Common Pleas Judge Barbara A. McDermott granted the request and set the new trial date for July 30 in Room 507 of the Criminal Justice Center, 1315 Filbert St.

The Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office “is ready for trial and we look forward to presenting the commonwealth’s case on July 30,” Ben Waxman, a spokesperson for the D.A., said in an email.

Hurley, White’s attorney, couldn’t be reached for comment.

White remains incarcerated at the Philadelphia Industrial Correctional Center in Northeast Philadelphia. 

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