Trial set to begin for man accused of killing woman on Brandon Ave

A five-day trial for the man accused of the shooting death of Carolyn Rose Barr on Brandon Avenue a little over two years ago is scheduled to begin Monday.

Barr, formerly a resident of Newberry Estates on Federal Avenue, was likely an accidental victim, police said. She died outside of her nephew’s house after an exchange of gunfire in the 400 block of Brandon Avenue on Oct. 13, 2015.

She was the record seventh homicide victim in the city that year.

Preparations and motions have been ongoing for 24-year-old Knowledge Dante Frierson since he was arrested and charged in May of 2016.

A jury was seated earlier this month for the trial expected to continue until Friday in court presided by President Judge Nancy L. Butts.

Frierson will be fighting serious charges including criminal homicide, aggravated assault, illegal possession of a firearm, receiving stolen property and robbery.

City police responded to the area for a reported shooting at about 9:50 p.m. that night, according to the affidavit.

Police said they found Barr unresponsive on the sidewalk with a bullet wound to her abdomen.

While securing the scene, an officer heard someone calling for help and allegedly found Frierson laying on the sidewalk holding a gunshot wound.

Frierson was questioned while being treated at UPMC Susquehanna. What he told police is just one of the aspects of the incident expected to be included in the testimony throughout the week.

According to the others involved that night, the victim, Barr, was only there to help.

About an hour before the shooting, a ‘suspicious man’ approached Barr’s nephew’s door asking for someone.

Keith Freeman Jr., the nephew, said he didn’t know the man or who he was asking for. Freeman called his fiancee, Karina Washington, to tell her about the odd encounter.

“It made me nervous. I didn’t know if he had a gun or not,” Freeman said during Frierson’s preliminary hearing in June of 2016.

After the man Freeman identified in court as Frierson came up a second time, he said he went upstairs and got a handgun and called Barr, his aunt, to pick his girlfriend up from work.

When Freeman was escorting Barr back to her car, a man jumped out of the bushes and the two started fighting.

A gun went off during the struggle and the two exchanged multiple shots as they ran away from each other.

It wasn’t until later that Freeman knew his aunt had been hit by a bullet. Barr was pronounced dead shortly after arriving at the hospital.