CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - The jury trial began Monday for a man accused of killing a young mother while carjacking her vehicle.
Cleveland police said Michael Preston, 24, ran over Lesley Dejesus, 33, with her own vehicle while he was stealing it on Nov. 15, 2018 outside the Archwood United Church at Archwood and W. 25.
During opening statements, representatives of the state of Ohio explained to the jury that there is overwhelming evidence connecting Preston to the crime.
“This is the defendant, who committed aggravated robbery when he by force stole this vehicle from Lesley,” one said.
Preston claims that authorities have arrested the wrong man.
“At the time that this occurred, Michael Preston was not at the church parking lot where this theft occurred, but rather was on his way from an apartment on the Eastside to a plasma donation ,” an attorney representing Preston said.
Dejesus, her husband and two kids were at the church setting up for a family party, when they noticed suspects trying to steal their vehicle.
Dejesus and her husband tried to prevent the theft and that is when she was run over and killed, police said.
Preston is charged with aggravated murder, aggravated robbery, murder, felonious assault, aggravated robbery and attempted aggravated murder.
Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas Judge Wanda Jones is presiding over the trial.