Witness recounts hiding gun, T-shirt for Pharr

A 22-year-old witness who says she held Rickey Pharr’s gun, T-shirt and hat after he allegedly shot Angelo Jones took the stand today in the first-degree murder trial against Pharr.

The witness, a friend of Pharr’s, said she was drinking a cup of champagne on a front porch in Lincoln Heights with a friend when they heard gunshots coming from the direction of the Clay Terrace neighborhood.

A pickup truck pulled into the Lincoln Heights neighborhood about five minutes after the shooting, the woman told the jury, and Pharr got out of the passenger side. He told the woman he had “slumped,” or killed, someone, she said, then he took off his hat and shirt and gave them to her.

“It just happened so quick. I just grabbed it and took it in the house,” she said.

Pharr, Curtis Patterson and a third person were outside when the witness returned.

Of the killing, the woman said Pharr told her a “boy” pulled out a knife, then Patterson passed Pharr a gun and Pharr shot the “boy.” She said Pharr said he threw the gun in a trash can in Marvin Gaye Park. Pharr, Patterson, the woman and her friend then walked to the park to get the gun, she said. They retrieved it and Pharr asked the woman to hold on to it for him, she said. She returned it to him the next night.

“I didn’t know what to do with it,” she said, adding that she also threw away Pharr’s T-shirt.

At trial Thursday, a near-indecipherable recorded phone conversation between Pharr and the woman was played. In the call Pharr asks her if she has met with his lawyer and asks her to tell the lawyer that he was in Lincoln Heights during the shooting. The woman said she didn’t want to lie, and that she set up an appointment with Pharr’s attorney but never went to it.

The government later subpoenaed her and she received immunity for her involvement in the crime in exchange for her testimony. But, she told the court, she felt unsafe as a government witness.

After testifying before the grand jury, she said, her mother outed her as a “snitch.” She was pregnant at the time and said she didn’t feel safe living in Lincoln Heights. The government then paid $139 a night for her to stay at a hotel for four months and provided her with $1,500, Pharr’s attorney said. The woman said the money was for food.

The trial will resume Monday at 9:30 a.m. Judge Thomas Motley said he expects the jury to begin deliberation by Tuesday.

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