Hancock County

'Gulf Coast Casanova' takes the stand in his murder trial

BAY ST. LOUIS -- Jurors are expected to begin deliberating Tuesday in the murder trial of Glen Davis, the so-called "Gulf Coast Casanova" accused of killing Bay businessman Maurice Colly.

Both sides rested after Davis took the stand in his own defense in an attempt to explain his whereabouts during Colly's death and refute some of the evidence prosecutors had presented.

Closing statements are set for 9 a.m. Tuesday.

Monday began with testimony from defense witness Joe Kepfer, a former Bay St. Louis detective who was taken off the investigation and fired from his job.

Last week saw several twists and turns as the defense established what appeared to be a questionable police investigation.

Kepfer said he never misrepresented evidence to secure arrest warrants for two of Colly's neighbors, Otis Stewart and Carolyn Babb, early in the investigation.

Kepfer later cleared Stewart and Babb after interviewing them and said he was no longer employed when Det. Gary Hudgens, who took over the case, developed Davis as a suspect.

Davis then took the stand and began explaining how he often did work at Colly's home, which prosecutors had never challenged.

The defense used this element to try to explain away some of the forensic evidence police used to connect Davis to Colly's home and a plastic sheet found under Colly's body in the trunk of his car.

The plastic sheet contained Davis' fingerprint and shoe print, but Davis said he had used that sheet to do some painting and other work around Colly's house.

He also said he was at a Mississippi Department of Public Safety office on March 6, 2012, the day Colly is believed to have died. The defense admitted a document into evidence that showed a

printout of a state ID card issued to him on that day.

However, the state's forensic evidence also included Davis' DNA found on bandages in a K-Mart bag, which one of Colly's relatives gave to police several weeks after officers searched Colly's apartment.

Davis said he purchased the bandages at K-Mart on March 7, 2012.

He said Colly was supposed to be out of town for a few days that week.

He said he bought the bandages for his elbow and shoulder, which were hurting at the time, and brought the bag with him to Colly's home to continue some work he was supposed to finish.

Davis said when he arrived, he heard a female voice coming from inside the apartment.

When he went inside, he saw Carolyn Babb and Otis Stewart in Colly's apartment, which he found to be "odd," he said.

Davis testified that he took Colly's ATM card, which Colly had supposedly left for him before going out of town.

He then said he left the bag of bandages at the apartment before going home for the evening.

On the next day, Davis went out gambling and drinking with a female friend and said he lost some of his money at the Island View Casino, so he went to get money from an ATM.

He admitted to using Colly's ATM card to withdraw $400, an amount the two had supposedly agreed would be paid for the work Davis was doing.

Davis said he became scared when he learned of Colly's death, prompting him to skip town and flee to Michigan for about four months.

"I foresaw some trouble coming my way," he said.

During cross-examination, prosecutors worked to cast doubt on Davis' story.

"You're saying he gave you that bank car card with his PIN number and everything?" Assistant District Attorney Chris Daniel said.

Daniel asked about statements he allegedly made to detectives in Michigan.

Daniel read aloud the statements, which included Davis saying he didn't like Maurice Colly.

Davis also could not provide much of an explanation for the wig he was wearing when U.S. Marshals apprehended him in Michigan. Police found the package for the wig in Colly's home.

Prosecutors also asked about a phone call Davis made to his mother from jail.

In the phone call, Davis said, "The guilt is (expletive) killing me. It's killing me."

In response to prosecutors, Davis said he was feeling guilty for stealing his friend's car and taking it to Michigan.

"You've spent three years thinking about this case, haven't you?" Daniel said. "You carefully planned the story you told us in your direct testimony, didn't you?"