PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – DNA, video surveillance, pictures and eye-witness accounts were all a part of a day-long preliminary hearing Wednesday inside a Philadelphia court room. A judge upheld all homicide charges against the man accused of killing 22-year-old Temple University student Jenna Burleigh.
Twenty-nine-year-old Joshua Hupperterz sat through seven hours of testimony, with few expressions, as prosecutors presented DNA reports, pictures and surveillance video of the two walking from Pub Webb on Temple’s campus to Hupperterz’s apartment — where they say brutal attack happened.
“The punching, the stabbing, the assault of what will probably end up being a ceramic bowl that was smashed on her head,” said Assistant District Attorney Jude Conroy.
Prosecutors read the medical examiner’s report listing all 143 injuries on the victim’s body – and called 10 witnesses to the stand.
“She screamed, as the witness testified, as if someone, a female, was dying in a horror movie,” Conroy said.
Jenna’s parents and friends filled the courtroom as the prosecution laid out their case and a strong timeline, showing how Hupperterz allegedly transported Burleigh’s body from his Philadelphia basement apartment to a shed on his family’s property about two hours away.
Prosecutors say he enlisted the help of his cousin and a Lyft driver to move a tote with her body inside — and told both men that books or clothes were inside.
The defense tried to poke holes at law enforcement’s reports, and argued that charges should be lowered to voluntary manslaughter – a request the judge denied, maintaining homicide, abuse of corpse and assault charges.
Hupperterz is due in court in December.