HOUSTON - Closing arguments concluded Tuesday in the trial for accused killer Andre Jackson. Testimony wrapped up late Monday evening with prosecutors calling their final witness, Josue Flores’ mother.
Maria Flores told jurors she received a call on May 17, 2016, saying her 11-year-old son had been stabbed more than 20 times, just two blocks from home as he walked home from middle school. It's a walk she normally took with her son, but she wasn’t feeling well that day.
The grieving mother says when she saw her son being taken out of the ambulance, his eyes were open, and she knew he was dead.
A DNA expert for the prosecution also testified Monday saying the 11-year-old honor student’s DNA was found on Andre Jackson’s jacket. The defense is trying to drive home the point that only a small amount of Josue Flores’ DNA was found on Jackson’s jacket.
But if Jackson never came in contact with the 11-year-old, some listening to the testimony are asking how did even a small amount get there?
"We’re all praying for the best results." says Stella Mireles Walters, who founded the Safe Walk Home program after Flores was killed.
Jackson was seen wearing the jacket in question in surveillance video as he ran away from the area where Josue was stabbed to death. The prosecution DNA expert says the cuff of Jackson's jacket tested positive for the 11-year-old’s DNA.
According to the expert, 85% of the DNA on the cuff of the jacket belonged to Jackson. 10% was Josue’s and 5% is from an unknown person.
"How do you catch DNA on your clothes? Do we just catch it in the air? No. There has to be that very close contact. DNA can not lie," Walters adds.
Josue Flores trial: Surveillance video shows final moments of 11-year-old's life
Jackson's jacket was tested at a Florida lab in 2019 after results came back inconclusive at a Texas state lab and HPD Cold Case detectives learned the out-of-town lab could run more sensitive tests than many other facilities.
The defense is stressing the DNA is not blood or saliva but rather touch DNA. A blood analysis expert testified last week although Flores was stabbed more than 20 times, his killer would not have necessarily gotten blood on him because the honor student’s backpack acted as a barrier.
Several witnesses say Flores’ killer stood behind the 4’10" honor student, holding him in a headlock, reaching around his body to stab him in a brutal unexpected attack that lasted a matter of seconds.
"I ask that everyone will say prayers for this case now that it’s coming to an end for everyone involved," Walters says.
Josue Flores' sister calls for positivity amid Andre Jackson’s murder trial
The defense also called a DNA expert who testified that Josue’s DNA could have ended up on the jacket if the "real" killer came in contact with Jackson’s jacket there at the Salvation Army Shelter where Jackson was living.
Defense attorneys are also insinuating that contamination is a possibility, since the evidence has been reviewed at three labs and at one lab Josue’s shirt couldn’t be tested for DNA after mold had grown on it.