BALTIMORE (WJZ)— It’s a bumpy road for prosecutors trying to convict twin brothers accused of setting a pit bull on fire.

Weijia Jiang has more on the obstacles on the witness stand.

There is no DNA or forensic evidence that links the brothers to the dog, so testimony is critical. Some of it has been contradictory, and one woman refused to testify at all. So now prosecutors are turning to what may be the star witness in this case: a city police camera.

Prosecutors are relying heavily on surveillance video that shows two men leading a young pit bull into an alley. The dog named Phoenix was set on fire there. She was burned so badly that she had to be euthanized.

On Thursday, a sergeant identified the men seen on the tape as 20-year-old twins Travers and Tremayne Johnson. They are on trial for torching the puppy and face animal cruelty charges.

The sergeant testified two pairs of jeans, sneakers and a backpack recovered from the brothers’ home match what he saw in the video. He also told jurors an eyewitness pointed to both brothers in a photo during the investigation.

“I saw this individual running from where the dog was burnt to death,” Tiera Goodman said during the investigation.

Earlier this week, the judge held Goodman in criminal contempt after she refused to testify. He then sentenced the 25-year-old woman to 6 months in prison.

Her refusal to talk shocked prosecutors. Goodman was a star witness during the first trial in February 2011 that ended in a hung jury. A single holdout could not convict the Johnsons.

This retrial was originally expected to wrap up Thursday afternoon but is far from that. Prosecutors haven’t even finished presenting their case.

The trial is expected to last for at least another week.

Comments (18)
  1. cms827 says:

    She was threatened for sure!!! These two pieces of garbage need to go to jail forever!!!

    1. Koatz says:

      The public will be certain to send the bill for their upkeep, to your address.

  2. 1chella says:

    These 2 pieces of garbage need to go to prison!!!! That poor animal did not deserve that!. First animals, what next a homeless man!?

  3. queen says:

    These two POS should have their nuts burned even blacker. Something is seriously amiss with these two murderers. Probably as children their daddy or the boyfriend beat the hell out of them or tortured them. As a result they & blacks just like them are loud, obnoxious & violent.

    1. KITTY says:

      i AGREE WITH QUEEN 100%

    2. Koatz says:

      Interesting… How do you explain White people’s penchant for lying, stealing, and committing genocide around the world? How about their hypocrisy?

      Did their daddies molest them, threaten them with death, and beat the hell out of them? Is that the reason White people are so vindictive and inhuman towards non-whites?

      1. urnotfunny says:

        Our taxes will pay to keep that trash in jail anyway, that’s where they belong forever!

      2. urnotfunny says:

        I’m white, I’m not of what you described above, but you are quite the racist aren’t you. Take a look in the mirror.

      3. usuxxx says:

        f kc u

  4. susan ellsworth says:

    BURN THE SOBS!!!!!!

  5. sharonthetroll says:

    If these two get off scott free then the doors are open to continue to maim, burn and kill innocent animals. This horrible act needs to be addressed and justice needs to be done for the poor dog. If the judge gives out a slap on the wrist like another judge who gave a man who beat a small dog, threw it on a truck in a plastic bag to die, 50 hours of community service to the SPCA, then these judges should not be judges. Why can’t they use her testimony from the last court appearance? Sickos start by hurting animals and then moving on to larger prey. Remember Jeffery Dahmer-he killed animals. Maybe if these kids were working instead of running the streets this would not have happened. And I don’t want to hear the old saying “It’s only a dog”. It was a life that was snuffed out in a horrible way. If you don’t believe me just go visit a Burn Unit of a hospital and see the suffering and those people can speak whereas the poor animal could not tell the attendants where it was hurting.

  6. Jerry says:

    I agree with all the above comments.

  7. wow says:

    The message must be sent to these punks. Stop them from laughing and smiling by rendering a 30-year sentence.

  8. Sentencing needs to be just as swift and harsh as what the twin pieces of garbage did to that poor dog! There’s a special place in hell for those two!….

  9. oscar says:

    May they get the justice they deserve, a long prison term followed by an agonizing slow painfull death in prison. May they be reincarnated as Pit Bulls in Balto, set on fire & keep repeating this scenario for all eternity.

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