The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Local News

January 9, 2013

Trial opens against 2 in killing of N.Y. man

JOHNSTOWN — An eyewitness testified Wednesday in a Cambria County murder trial that Marquis “G” Neal, armed with a handgun, shot and killed a New York man on an October afternoon at the Oakhurst Homes housing project in Johnstown.

John “Mike” Morgan, who lives in project, was among opening witnesses as testimony got under way in the trial of Neal, 30, and Anthony “Mack” Harvey, Neal’s 29-year-old cousin. Both of the Philadelphia men are charged in the shooting death.

The victim, 21-year-old J-Quan “Scar” Lewis, was a New York City man who had been staying in Johnstown for several months prior to the Oct. 1, 2011, murder. The shooting took place around 2 p.m. near Building 42.

The trial is being held in the downtown Johnstown courtroom at the county-owned Central Park Complex. It resumes at 9 a.m. today.

Morgan recalled that as he left his apartment to go to a grocery store, he saw two men – later identified as Neal and Lewis – outside “and I heard a pop. I seen ‘G’ shooting ‘Scar.’ ”

Lewis then “took off running, and ‘G’ started walking after him shooting. He (Lewis) took off running across the street, zigzagging between cars. He tripped and stumbled and fell down, fell onto his face,” Morgan recalled.

At that point, Neal “walked up to him and stood over him and shot him twice in the head,” the witness recalled as he stood and pointed his arm downward to the floor to demonstrate the final fatal shots.

Neal then calmly walked to a parked red minivan, which another witness, Jeremy Rogers, said was driven by Harvey.

The whole incident took place within a minute, Morgan said.

District Attorney Kelly Callihan, in an opening to the jury, described the killing as senseless, cold-blooded and done in revenge for a beating that Harvey received in a fight with Lewis late on Sept. 30, 2011, at Edder’s Den, a bar in the Oakhurst neighborhood.

While witnesses to the fight were unable to say what had sparked it, Callihan suggested that Neal and Harvey had gone after Lewis to keep their “street credibility” because of the beating Harvey received.

Bradley Clark, an Edder’s Den bartender, said that Lewis and Harvey started to argue in the bar but he could not hear the conversation.

He said that he saw Harvey throw up his arms as if indicating, “I have no beef with you. I’m not going to fight with you.”

Because of the verbal confrontation, the bartender said he ordered the two men to “take it outside,” where he saw them fighting. Lewis twice slammed Harvey face-down to the ground, he recalled. Neal drove up in the minivan and drove Harvey away, Clark said.

The district attorney said that about 14 hours later, Neal and Harvey “were going there (to Oakhurst Homes) to avenge the fight, to settle the score, to seek him out and kill him. These two guys from Philadelphia were not going to let a young kid from New York embarrass them.”

Defense attorney Jerome Kaharick, who represents Harvey, told the jury in his opening that the prosecution’s case against Harvey is built on “imaginary evidence” and speculation.

Although Harvey is charged as an accomplice as the van driver, both defendants are on trial for criminal homicide.

If convicted of first-degree murder, each would face an automatic life sentence without the possibility of parole.

Defense attorneys Paul Eckenrode and Robert David Gleason, who represent Neal, deferred making an opening until after the prosecution rests its case.

Click here to subscribe to The Tribune-Democrat print edition.

Click here to subscribe to The Tribune-Democrat e-edition.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • Halfway house inmates can ease back into society

    Prison life can be a time warp.
    When inmates are locked away – for months, years, decades – society moves forward: Technology evolves, major events occur, pop culture changes. From a personal perspective, families and friends live their lives: weddings, funerals, graduations, births, retirements. All the while, criminals bide their time, existing in a regimented world of cement walls and metal bars.
    Almost all of them eventually rejoin society, though.

    April 19, 2014

  • Crime board took aim at house

    Johnstown’s unemployment rate is around 8 percent.
    One-third of the city’s population lives in poverty.
    Burglaries and assaults significantly increased between 2010 and 2012. There is a thriving illegal trade in heroin and prescription drugs.
    Given those conditions, it can be challenging for Johnstown Community Corrections Center residents to find jobs when living in the facility or to avoid falling back into a criminal lifestyle upon their release.

    April 19, 2014

  • Homicides linked to center

    Three homicides that took place in Johnstown last year involved either a suspect or victim who previously resided in the Community Corrections Center.
    Police Chief Craig Foust confirmed the name of one victim, who spent almost two months in the facility on Washington Street during 2007, a time period verified by the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections.

    April 19, 2014

  • bachota Volunteers helping to spruce up community

    Walls and ceilings inside the Cambria County Library look clean and bright with fresh new coats of paint on them.
    The work was recently done by inmates from the Johnstown Community Corrections Center.

    April 19, 2014 2 Photos

  • alanna Hartzok targets income disparity

    Alanna Hartzok described herself as being a conservative progressive.
    The Franklin County resident said she is in favor of conserving environmental resources, education opportunities, Social Security and Medicare, while wanting to progressively address wealth inequality, health care and taxation.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Schools rise to leadership challenge

    Forest Hills and Cambria Heights high school students put the spirit of healthy competition toward a good cause and picked up some lessons in leadership along the way.

    April 19, 2014

  • KATEY LADIKA Student’s photos win awards

    A Forest Hills High School junior has captured several awards in a high school arts and writing contest that has identified greats such as Truman Capote and Andy Warhol.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jim Siehl JIM SIEHL | Music to my ears

    Seldom has $15 produced such a high level of entertainment as it did a few weeks ago when I found myself in the second row just left of center keeping back the tears once again during my third live performance of “Les Miserables.”

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Michele Bender Bye, bye, Easter birdies

    Animals fascinated my mom. Riding the train between Johnstown and Philly, she saw horses, pigs, sheep, cows … a Mattel See ’n Say of farm critters.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bill Eggert Columnist Photo Travelogue of terror features Johnstown area

    A historic week will surround the venerable Silver Drive-In come the beginning of May.

    April 19, 2014 2 Photos


Would you like to see the Johnstown Community Corrections Center remain open after its lease runs out on Oct. 11, 2015?

I'm not sure
     View Results
House Ads