Juror dismissed in Wayne Community College murder trial

Kenneth Stancil in court on April 28, 2017. (Robert Richardson/CBS North Carolina)
Kenneth Stancil in court on April 28, 2017. (Robert Richardson/CBS North Carolina)

GOLDSBORO, N.C. (WNCN) – A judge dismissed a juror Friday in the trial of a 22-year-old man accused of shooting a Wayne County Community College employee to death with a shotgun in April 2015.

Kenneth Morgan Stancil III, 22, was arrested in Florida, a day after authorities say he shot and killed Ron Lane, 44, a print shop director at the school.

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Friday would be the third day of testimony in Stancil’s first-degree murder trial.

The judge dismissed a juror who had contact with a witness, Steve Mozingo, in the trial. Both work at Wayne County Community College and had contact Thursday night.

Mozingo is a patrol captain with the Wayne County Sheriff’s Office, who is also the fire services coordinator at Wayne Community College. Mozingo will be receiving a letter about contempt, and will have a court appearance schedule in the next few weeks.

The dismissed juror was one of four alternates in addition to 12 main jury members. The dismissed juror will not be penalized as he didn’t initiate contact.

Stancil’s younger brother Nick testified Friday saying he was Facebook friends with Lane but had never met him. Nick Stancil said he accepted a Facebook friend request from Lane because he wanted to participate in video game summits at Wayne Community College, and thought having Lane as a contact would benefit him.

At one point, Lane “liked” two Facebook photos of Nick.

Nick Stancil didn’t have a shirt on in one of the two pictures.

Nick Stancil unfriended Lane after his mother commented to him about Lane having a bunch of teenage boy Facebook friends.

Defense said in opening statements that Kenneth Stancil believed Lane had a romantic interest in his brother, who was 16 at the time.

Nick Stancil said on the morning of Lane’s shooting, Kenneth Stancil gave him a knife and a jacket and said “there’s a video that explains everything.”

Nick Stancil says his brother talked about going away.

“I thought he was finally going to move out, and travel,” he testified.

He also spoke about about changes in his brother’s look, including head tattoos as well as cutting his long hair.

“It wasn’t too long before the shooting. The only reason I knew that was because there was hair everywhere. It wasn’t something you could ignore,” Nick Stancil said.

Prosecutors link some of the tattoos to hate groups, and investigators seized numerous KKK and white power items.

But Nick Stancil says his father collected those things, and his brother got them after their father’s suicide.

“He had a lot of different races of friends. If he is a white supremacist, I don’t see it,” Nick Stancil said.

Stancil worked with Lane at the community college print shop. Another shop employee testified Thursday that after Stancil lost his job, he came into the office and yelled at Lane before shooting him in the face.

The jury saw a 3D image of the print shop and surveillance video of Stancil coming to and fleeing the campus.

RELATED: Stancil’s mother says abuse allegations made in court are false

CBS North Carolina will update this story as it develops.

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