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Surprise witness ready in murder trial

The murder trial of a Lacoochee teenager was delayed Monday when prosecutors said another teen, convicted in the same crime, might testify against him.

Jesse Ray Allen, 18, was scheduled to face first-degree murder and carjacking charges Monday before Circuit Judge Wayne Cobb. But prosecutor Phil Van Allen told Allen's appointed defense attorney Sam Williams that convict Lionell Kendall Mitchell appears ready to testify against Allen.

Williams said that revelation changes everything. He had earlier not expected Mitchell to testify.

Allen, Mitchell, 19, and Damani Emmanuel, 21, were accused of murder in the 1999 beating death of 76-year-old Daniel Max Boyko.

Mitchell was convicted of manslaughter in September of last year and sentenced to 15 years in prison. Emmanuel is scheduled for trial Sept. 23.

At his trial, Mitchell testified, admitting he was present for the killing, but he denied taking part.

Cobb scheduled Allen for trial Oct. 7.

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