WICHITA, Kan (KSNW) – The preliminary hearing for Javan Ervin is underway in Sedgwick County court. Ervin is accused of several crimes, including 1st-degree murder. Wichita police said he led officers on a chase and eventually crashed into 22-year-old Samantha Russell, killing her.
Although the preliminary hearing is not over, on Thursday several people took to the stand and gave a clearer picture of what happened on July 6th. One Wichita police officer testified that Ervin was a suspect in a robbery, where officers eventually tracked him down to a Wichita gas station.
“He was coming there, believed to be meeting a girl that he met on Facebook,” said Casey Richwine, a Wichita police officer.
Officer Casey Richwine said when Ervin saw police he took off. A pursuit followed, but officer Richwine said the chase was quickly called off. Several witnesses to the crash shared they saw the vehicle going anywhere from 65 – 100 mph as it approached Central and Ridge Rd. Russell’s car was hit at the intersection. Another officer shared when he began to assist the 22-year-old.
“They laid the victim down on the ground and began doing chest compressions trying to do, you know, life-saving measurements. They saw, or we saw, that she was pregnant so that is why they immediately started,” said Mckenzie Van Pelt, a Wichita police officer.
A Wichita police detective shared that during Ervin’s interview after he was arrested he claimed someone else was driving the car, but video surveillance only shows one man fleeing the scene.
The hearing will continue on January 7th, from there, the judge will decide if this case will go to trial.