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Published: Friday, 7/11/2003

Jury finds suspect guilty in acquaintance's slaying

A Lucas County Common Pleas Court jury rejected claims by an Old West End man that he fatally stabbed a friend in self-defense and found him guilty of murder.

The jury deliberated for four hours yesterday before finding Larey Anderson, 51, of 3021 Parkwood Ave. guilty of the March 12 slaying of Adrian Solomon, 39, of 2242 Maplewood Ave.

Judge Charles Wittenberg scheduled sentencing for July 18. The conviction carries a mandatory life sentence with the possibility of parole after 15 years, Judge Wittenberg said.

Various versions of the events that led to the stabbing were presented at trial. Prosecutors said Mr. Solomon was given a ride to Anderson's house so they could have a small party.

After drinking beer and smoking cocaine and marijuana, a quarrel started between Anderson and Mr. Solomon.

Some witnesses said it was because Mr. Solomon's girlfriend, Shalaunda Jordan, knocked over a knick-knack shelf in the house and another said it was because Mr. Solomon was teasing Anderson.

Regardless, the two men fought, and Anderson was cut on his forehead. When Anderson told Mr. Solomon and Ms. Jordan to leave, Mr. Solomon protested that he didn't want to walk home in the cold.

At that point, more differences appeared in the testimony. Everyone agreed that Mr. Solomon left the home, but whether Anderson completely shut a security door was unclear, as was whether Mr. Solomon was stabbed while in the doorway of the home or on the stairs leading to the door.

It was a key point, because Anderson's self-defense claim hung on whether he felt he was in imminent danger of death or serious bodily harm and whether he used excessive force.

“Mr. Solomon lost his life over a trivial set of circumstances,” said Gary Cook, an assistant county prosecutor.

Since Mr. Solomon had left Anderson's home after the fight that had occurred during the party, any threat he may have posed was over, Mr. Cook said.

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