Brenner
Brenner

Nearly eight years after being convicted of first-degree murder for the 2005 shooting death of a York City woman, a new set of jurors must rehear the case.

Ian C. Brenner, 33, has spent nearly nine years locked up for the crime, in which 46-year-old Anna Marie Witter was killed and two men were wounded.

After being convicted in 2006, he was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Brenner won a new trial in May 2013 after his appeal convinced the state Superior Court that his trial attorney was ineffective for failing to call character witnesses on Brenner's behalf.

He is now represented by Harrisburg-based attorney Joseph Sembrot.

Opening statements began Monday afternoon, followed by testimony from three police officers who responded to the shooting scene.

The case: Witter was killed when she was struck in the left breast by an errant bullet as she sat talking with a friend in the 100 block of South Duke Street on Oct. 19, 2005. Two others, Alfonzo King Sr. and Anthony Zawadzinski, were hit but survived.

Police have said all three were innocent victims and that Brenner was trying to shoot Jeffrey "Supreme" Mable.

According to police and witness testimony from Brenner's first trial, Mable allegedly shot Brenner 10 days prior to Witter's homicide.


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Police said Brenner — who did not cooperate with police trying to investigate his shooting — was retaliating with street justice. No charges were ever filed in the shooting of Brenner.

Key witnesses: York County District Attorney Tom Kearney told jurors they will hear testimony from two key witnesses. They are Daniek Burns, who was 17 at the time of the homicide and who identified Brenner as the gunman, and Apollonia Snyder, who at the time was a member of York City's "212s" crew.

During the 2006 trial, Snyder told jurors that she and Brenner were driving around, bar-hopping, a few days before the murder and she heard him tell someone on his cellular phone that when he saw Mable, he intended to "pop" him.

At the time, he had a gun on his lap, she said.

Police have said Brenner was a member of the "212s," and acted as an enforcer for the neighborhood gang.

But jurors will not hear from Burns in person. He has died, meaning they will hear only his testimony from the first trial.

Testimony will resume Tuesday morning. Common Pleas Judge Michael E. Bortner is presiding.

— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at levans@yorkdispatch.com.