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The state rested its case this afternoon against Ronald Cosper, the man charged with shooting Steve Mosley to death in his Avondale home during a robbery in 2012. 

Cosper's attorney, Andrew Basler, asked Judge Barry Steelman for an acquittal, saying that the state failed to provide adequate evidence linking Cosper to the crime.  

Steelman overruled the request for an acquittal, stating that sufficient evidence has been presented to implicate Cosper's alleged involvement in Mosley's death.

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Ronald Cosper

Basler specifically argued that the prosecution's case relied on what he considered questionable testimony from Dustin Hayes, who is a codefendant in the case.

Hayes pleaded guilty to facilitation to commit aggravated robbery last week, and his charges of first-degree murder and aggravated robbery were dismissed. 

Attorney Lance Pope reminded Hayes several times that his plea deal is contingent on his truthful testimony.

Hayes took the stand this morning, and testified about the events that took place on the day of Mosley's death.  He said that he knew he was driving Cosper to rob a man referred to as the "weed man," but he denied having any knowledge that Cosper planned to kill him.

Hayes said he waited in the car around the corner as Cosper went into Mosley's house.  From the car he heard what he hoped were firecrackers, but once Cosper returned to the car he learned that the popping noise was from three gunshots.

"[Once in the car] Cosper proceeded to talk about how things went wrong or something," Hayes said.  "The mad had attacked him or something....[Cosper] said that he shot him three times to get him off him."

The defense decided not to call any witnesses, and closing arguments will begin tomorrow.

See tomorrow's Times Free Press for the full story.

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