Lawyers paint different pictures of Joshua Young as trial begins - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Lawyers paint different pictures of Joshua Young as trial begins

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The trial for a Louisville teen accused of murdering his step-brother began Wednesday morning.

Prosecutors argue they believe Joshua Young helped his father kill 14-year-old Trey Zwicker. 

Young is charged with complicity to murder and tampering with physical evidence.

"We don't know what the instrument of Trey's death was, because that defendant woke up his cousin in the middle of the night after he and his father committed the murder and asked her to help him get rid of a bloody bat and clothes," says prosecutor Erin White.

Defense attorney Pete Schuler says that Young should not have to pay for the mistakes of his father.

"Joshua is not guilty of murder. He's not guilty because he didn't do it. He wasn't there when it happened," says Pete Schuler.

The 17-year-old has spent the past two years in a juvenile detention center after being accused of killing his step-brother, Trey Zwicker, in May 2011. Zwicker's body was found in a ditch behind Liberty High School. Though he was 15 at the time of the crime, Young is being tried as an adult.

The day Zwicker was found, Joshua Young's stepfather, Joshua Gouker, told lead detective Leigh Maroni that a group of boys had been bothering Zwicker.

Months later, he told them Joshua Young killed Zwicker with a baseball bat to retaliate against Gouker's wife, after she aborted their child.

Later, Gouker confessed to the crime, saying that he was responsible and beat the teen to death after he "snapped." 

Family members say they believe Gouker was trying to cover up for his son.

Prosecutors and defense agree that Gouker is a "monster," but they disagree on who is responsible for Zwicker's death.

Both attorneys told the jury they would hear from detectives and the medical examiner who does not know what the weapon was, a bat or a pipe. 

Trey's father testified on what it was like when he had to identify the body: "And look at what they had, but I would be probably 50 feet away, that's the best he could do for me. Of course, it didn't take 2 seconds to look over there and know that was my boy laying there," says Terry Zwicker.

As photos were later shown in court of the young teenager, you could hear Zwicker's family crying out.

The jury must now decide, whether Joshua Young was involved with the murder of his stepbrother.


The jury is made up of 10 men and four women. There are two minorities in the group. Most of the jurors are older, but another man is in his twenties.

Copyright 2013 by WDRB News. All rights reserved.

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