Trial begins for Virginia teen fatally shot at party - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

Trial begins for Virginia teen fatally shot at party


After more than three years, the trial for a suspect in the death of a local teen, killed at a college party, is set to begin. Investigators say Jessica Moore, 19, used to her own body to shield a friend from a gunman in New Jersey. Moore lost her life during that 2010 attack.

Moore's family lives in Prince George County. They say they've waited and prayed for years for justice. Moore's mother, Dr. Phyllis Moore-Tolliver, describes how Jessica threw her body on top of a friend, while a gunman opened fire at an off-campus party.

"At that time, Jessica took a bullet to the back of her head," said Moore-Tolliver.

The Seton Hall University sophomore's mother was home in Virginia that September night. Moore-Tolliver had spoken to Jessica just two hours before she received a harrowing phone call. One of her daughter's friends told her that Jessica had been shot in the head.

"The loss is just unreal," said James Moore, Jessica's father.

Police charged two suspects in connection with Jessica's death. It's been more than three years, and the jury selection only began last week. "I feel like we've covered more ground last week, than we have in the last three years," continued Moore-Tolliver.

However, Jessica's father says closure will never come. "No matter what happens, it won't bring her back…We look for the day when we're going to get the phone call saying we have grand kids on the way," added Moore.

Jessica dreamed of singing, and also helping veterans returning from war. Both her father and stepfather served in the military.

Two foundations now keep her aspirations alive, to help returning service men and women, as well as educating teenagers.  

Still, Jessica's family waits for justice. "Basically, a lot of prayers and just waiting and being patient," added Moore-Tolliver.

"I want to be able to look those guys in the eye and they're paying for what they did," said Moore.

Stay with NBC12 for updates on the murder trial for victim Jessica Moore.

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