Prosecutors are trying to convict 23-year-old Brian Minton on charges of first-degree murder, first-degree kidnapping, and conspiracy in the 2008 slaying of 20-year-old Josh Bailey.
According to investigators, Bailey was shot in the head July 29 in a wooded area off Twisted Oaks Drive outside Carrboro and then buried in a shallow grave. His body was later dug up and reburied near Jordan Lake, where police found it in late September 2008.
Minton is the first of six people facing the same charges in the case to go on trial. Prosecutors have acknowledged that Minton was not the triggerman, but they allege he was the leader of the group that killed Bailey.
Witnesses who have already testified allege that the group pulled off robberies together, but that some became suspicious someone within the circle was stealing from the others.
Suspicion first fell on group member Matt Johnson, but he said Bailey was the one. The two were interrogated by the group in Minton's garage and then ordered to fight it out. While Johnson continued to maintain his innocence, Bailey wasn't as vocal and blame fell on him.
He was taken to the woods and Minton allegedly ordered Johnson to shoot Bailey. Prosecutors say he shot Bailey in the head and then in the chest.
After leaving the body in a shallow grave, prosecutors say the body was later dug up and moved to Jordan Lake.
Minton's mother Mishele Minton, who along with her husband, Greg Minton, is charged with accessory after the fact to first-degree murder for allegedly trying to hide evidence, allegedly drove her son to Lowe's to buy acid to help conceal the crime.
She was in the courtroom Wednesday as prosecutors showed receipts from the store of the purchase.
If convicted, Minton could face life in prison.