Triple murder trial continues in Cape Girardeau Co.

Ryan Terrell Patterson (Source: Cape Girardeau PD)
Ryan Terrell Patterson (Source: Cape Girardeau PD)
Jamie and Derrick Orman
Jamie and Derrick Orman

JACKSON, MO (KFVS) - Tuesday brings another round of testimony in the Ryan Patterson murder trial. Patterson is charged with the murder of Jamie Orman, her unborn son, and her 15-year-old son Derrick.

The murders occurred in October of 2009.

Patterson is accused of being the gunman in what prosecutors call a murder plot for insurance money that hit a snag. Two others, Michelle Lawrence, and Samuel 'Ray Ray' Hughes also face charges in connection with the triple murder. Patterson remains the only one of the three suspects to enter a not guilty plea.

As of 2:15 p.m., Samuel 'Ray Ray' Hughes, the alleged lookout man took the stand. He told the jury he originally lived in Arkansas and moved to Missouri with his wife. Hughes said during testimony, Ryan Patterson asked him if he wanted to 'hit a lick.' Hughes said it was a phrase he took to mean 'commit burglary.' Hughes indicated he told Patterson he would go with him.

"What did you do in preparation," asked Prosecutor Morley Swingle.

"We got drunk," said Hughes.

Upon further questioning by Prosecutor Swingle, Hughes said he was waiting outside the home on Missouri Street keeping watch on the morning of October 27, 2009.

He told Swingle he heard a noise and went to the back of the house.

"The door was open," said Hughes. "I walked up to the door. I saw him (Mr. Patterson) with a gun in his hand," said Hughes. He said he saw Patterson standing over someone with a cover over them.

That someone was 15-year-old Derrick Orman.

"He was moving slow," said Hughes. "Like he was in a a daze, slow."

Hughes said there was light coming from the other room and he could see inside. Swingle asked Hughes how and where Patterson was standing at the time. Hughes then stood up and made a motion as if he were pointing a gun.

Hughes told the jury he didn't expect to see Patterson standing there with a gun because he was not under the impression anyone was going to get hurt. However, Hughes also testified he knew Patterson had a gun on him.

Hughes said he then ran away. He testified that Patterson indicated he messed up.

Hughes said Patterson told him: "She said there wasn't supposed to be anybody home," said Hughes.

Hughes said he last saw Patterson driving off in the Blazer.  He said he believed Patterson when he told him he would kill him if he told anyone what he saw. Hughes again told Swingle and the jury he didn't know anyone would be hurt and he did not have a fun. Hughes said he burned his clothes and shoes and threw his gloves out the window.

Under cross-examination by Robert Steels, Hughes said he 'fled' to Missouri from Arkansas after burglaries and the assault involving a minor. Hughes indicated he came to Missouri with little money.

Around noon Michelle Lawrence gave her testimony. She told the jury she and Patterson had conversations discussing 'they'd be on easy street' if something happened to her estranged husband, John.

Lawrence recalls a conversation between herself and Patterson where they discussed a 'close-call' John Lawrence had with his truck.

"I said 'If he had died today I'd have been a rich woman,'" said Michelle Lawrence.

"Ryan said 'He'd pop a cap in him,'" said Michelle Lawrence. "We talked about different ways to get into the house."

Lawrence indicated there were items inside the home she once shared with John Lawrence that she felt were still hers.

While being questioned by Swingle, Lawrence said she bought .44 caliber bullets at Wal-Mart in Jackson at Patterson's request. She also identified herself in pictures from the store.

She said during testimony she blamed Jamie partially for her failed marriage to John Lawrence and indicated she was not happy with the fact Jamie was pregnant. She told the jury she and john tried to work things out for a period of time before deciding to divorce.

Lawrence said she learned about the murders on the news. She told the jury she 'freaked out' when she saw the coverage. She admitted to lying to police saying Ryan Patterson was home with her in the early morning hours of October 27, 2009 when she knew he was not.

Lawrence told the jury Patterson never confessed to her he killed anyone.

"He said he went to the house but could not get in," said Lawrence.

She said she asked Patterson how Jamie and Derrick came to be killed. Lawrence said Patterson told her he didn't know for sure.

Meanwhile, she also indicated that while she purchased bullets for Patterson she did not intend for him to kill john Lawrence. At one point she suggested it was 'like a joke'. Twice the defense, judge, and prosecutors stopped testimony to discuss possible discrepancies in Ms. Lawrence's statements.

Family members of victims, Jamie and Derrick Orman say it was difficult to listen to the details of the morning their loved ones died, and also the reasons given by Michelle Lawrence for the alleged plan.

"It's hard to hear it was all about the money," said Stephanie Howard, Jamie Orman's sister. "All she (Michelle Lawrence) wanted was the money."

Family members of victims Jamie and Derrick Orman say it was difficult to listen to the details of that morning in October, and also reasons given by Michelle Lawrence for the alleged plan.

"It's hard to hear it was all about the money," said Stephanie Howard, Jamie Orman's sister. "All she wanted was the money."

Earlier in the morning, Brandy Sue Little testified. During examination by Prosecutor Morley Swingle, Little told the jury she worked with Patterson at a nursing home. Little recalled a conversation during which she says Patterson told her he was about to come into some money.

"He said he had a lick to hit," said Little. "He said he wouldn't have to worry about money anymore."

Swingle asked if she knew what 'a lick' meant. Little indicated she wasn't sure.

In cross examination by public defender David Kenyon, he asked if Patterson ever told her he wanted to kill anyone, including John Lawrence or Jamie Orman.

Little replied: 'No."

Tuesday family members for both defendant, Ryan Patterson and the families of Jamie and Derrick Orman were present.

Prosecutors allege Lawrence and Patterson were plotting to kill her estranged husband John to cash in on life and home insurance policies. However, Jamie and Derrick were home instead of John, according to prosecutors.

Monday marked day one of the trial. Monday's testimony included forensics experts and Jamie Orman's other two sons, Jacob and Travis no ages 11 and 16. They were both home the morning of the killings.

Stay with Heartland News for continued updates throughout Tuesday's testimony.

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