The places a Massapequa man went and the people he called the day a North Amityville woman was shot to death all show his involvement in the crime, as do the many steps he took to elude arrest afterward, a Suffolk prosecutor told jurors Tuesday.
The jury in the courtroom of Suffolk County Court Judge John Toomey Jr. heard that closing argument before they began deliberations Tuesday in the second-degree murder case against David Newbeck, 36. He's accused of killing Mandy Jo Jenkins, 30, in her apartment because she wouldn't withdraw identity theft charges against his girlfriend. Her boyfriend and Newbeck's childhood friend, Joseph DeFelice, was convicted of his role in the murder last fall.
"She was expendable to them," Assistant District Attorney Robert Biancavilla said. "She was a nuisance. An inconvenience that had to be eliminated."
In his summation, defense attorney William Keahon had noted the absence of forensic evidence against his client. But Biancavilla said surveillance videos and cellphone location data put Newbeck at the warehouse apartment Jenkins and DeFelice shared in the early hours of Aug. 23, 2010, and indicate he was in the Lindenhurst neighborhood where the body was found more than six weeks later wrapped in a tarp.
Before and after Jenkins' shooting, Biancavilla said Newbeck was on the phone with his girlfriend, Jennifer Russini. But while he was dumping the body, he said Newbeck instead was talking to DeFelice, who had stayed behind to clean the apartment.
When the body was found, it was so decomposed that it took a forensic anthropologist to reconstruct her head and figure out she was shot four times. Showing jurors a photo of Jenkins' shattered skull, Biancavilla said, "He blew the side of her head off."
Biancavilla and Keahon then had a brief but heated argument when Keahon said Biancavilla wrongly claimed Newbeck bought a new tarp to wrap the body.
"Sit down, Mr. Keahon," Biancavilla said when the defense attorney stood to object.
"You want to make me sit down?" Keahon replied, before Toomey told Biancavilla to talk to the jury and not to Keahon.
Biancavilla listed numerous steps Newbeck took after dumping the body that illustrated Newbeck's consciousness of guilt. They included fleeing police the day of the killing, using a variety of cellphones and rental cars in subsequent weeks, leaving Long Island to go to Alabama after attempting to move the body, leaving Alabama in the middle of the night after hearing there was an arrest warrant for him, and trying to go to Ecuador. Newbeck was arrested as he tried to board the plane.
"There is only one reasonable conclusion you can draw from all of these things, and that is that he's guilty," Biancavilla said.
Deliberations resume Wednesday.