Jurors have acquitted one of two brothers who were charged in the shooting death nearly two years ago of an off-duty St. Paul firefighter in his home.
Blake Caraway, 37, of Eden Prairie, was found not guilty Friday in Ramsey County District Court of second-degree intentional and second-degree unintentional murder.
Dontay Caraway, 41, remains charged with the same counts in connection with the killing of Thomas Harrigan, 36, on Sept. 2, goes on trial on Aug. 23.
"It was a case of eyewitness identification, and they simply didn't prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt," defense attorney Earl Gray said Monday.
"And there were many more people that they didn't rule out" as potential perpetrators, Gray added.
The police response on the day Harrigan was shot in the 1700 block of E. Ivy Avenue capped a string of recent law enforcement calls to his house involving drugs and other troubles after his overseas military service left him traumatized and needing help for substance abuse.
Officers were called to the house soon after the gunfire erupted about 8:30 p.m. They arrived and found Harrigan shot in the abdomen. He was taken to Regions Hospital and declared dead.
Harrigan had been having problems with people who stayed in the home, according to witnesses cited in the criminal complaint. Dontay Caraway had recently been kicked out and his phone taken away after allegedly stealing from Harrigan, and Harrigan and another roommate had struck Caraway a few times.
On the day of the shooting, Dontay and Blake Caraway entered the home and argued with Harrigan, the witnesses told police.
Harrigan tried to hit Blake Caraway with a stick, and he allegedly responded by shooting Harrigan in the torso, the witnesses said.
Paul Walsh • 612-673-4482