Jury deliberating in drug-related murder case

A Gwinnett County jury adjourned their deliberations Thursday afternoon without reaching a verdict in the trial for Omar Falay, who is accused of taking part in a drug ripoff that resulted in a fatal shooting in Grayson.

The jury will resume deliberations Friday morning. Falay is charged with murder, aggravated assault and armed robbery. Zachary Bivens and Francelis Dorce were charged as co-defendants. Prosecutors say he participated in a robbery that went awry on Dec. 23, 2008.

Falay, 20, testified Wednesday that he was only hanging out with Bivens and Dorce because the two teenagers, whom he knew from school, bumped into him at a gas station. Falay said they asked if he wanted to smoke weed with them. He said he witnessed Dorce call someone to set up a marijuana buy and walked with his friends to meet the sellers in a nearby cul-de-sac. Falay said didn't know they were planning to rob the victims until Givens handed Dorce a gun and told him he was going to "hit a lick" -- street slang for robbing someone.

"I told them I wasn't down to hit a lick," Falay said.

Falay claimed he ran to the woods and watched his friends get into a silver Mercedes from afar. He testified that he saw Dorce get into a scuffle with a man from the vehicle, and saw Bivens shoot the man. Afterward, Falay said his friends ran up to him, and Bivens shot him in the abdomen while warning him not to tell anyone. Then they left him in the woods, Falay testified. Falay walked to a friend's home nearby and asked them to call 911.

Robert Christopher Morales, 27, of Loganville was killed in the shooting.

Closing statements in the case wrapped up around midday. The jury is expected to begin deliberating Thursday afternoon.