Court Coverage

Feb 20, 2013 9:21 PM

Murder Victim's Family Demands Answers, Feels Out of the Loop

A Clark County family is demanding answers after Phillip Howard was murdered, allegedly by an intruder in his home in May 2011. The victim's family says they haven't been kept in the loop about when murder suspect, Aaron Lewis, is in court.

Lewis's status hearing at 11:30 am Wednesday was continued until March. The stakes are high for his April 2013 murder trial. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty. Yet the victim's family was conspicuously absent in court Wednesday morning. They say they missed court because no one told them what time Lewis would appear.

"This is our family that we lost. We can't even get any answers. How are we supposed to let everything go to rest? What are we supposed to do?" says Chrishell Hill, Phillip Howard's cousin.

Winchester police say Howard died in a shootout trying to defend his home from two intruders. One of the alleged intruders died. The other, Aaron Lewis, was later caught and charged with Howard's murder. Howard's family wonders if they'll ever learn what really happened that night.

"No, we'll never know. Absolutely not. We'll never know truly exactly what happened," says Hill.

But they sure want to try. They say Howard's dad, overcome with grief, died of a heart attack shortly after his son. They say his mom isn't well.

"The rest of Phillip Howard's family is here to ask questions, to want to know. We care. We are hurting. We just want to know some answers. Don't push us away," says Hill.

Earlier in February, Lewis was expected to change his plea. It didn't happen, but court started fifteen minutes early, and Howard's family just missed it.

"We don't really know much about what's happening. It's crazy," says Shavon Howard, Phillip's cousin.

But they are ready for the trial.

"We know ultimately God has the last say in everything," says Deniece Williams, Phillip's friend. "Justice will be served for him, but if there's anything we can do, we'd like to do that now."

They plan to be there every step of the way.

"If it was your family, would you just let it go?" asks Chrishell Hill.

Lewis's next status hearing is set for March 15th, 2013.

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