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Victim's mother testifies in West Avenue murder case
Closing arguments set for Thursday
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Judge Andrew Fuller listens Wednesday afternoon in Hall County Superior Court as both sides rest during Leshan Tanner’s murder trial.

Following nearly two weeks of unconsciousness at the hospital, Cedric Antonio Huff gathered the breath to tell his mother about the men that allegedly robbed him and left him bleeding on West Avenue in Gainesville, according to testimony Wednesday in Superior Court.

The prosecution and defense rested Wednesday afternoon in the case of Leshan Tanner, 42, of Gainesville, who was charged with felony murder following Huff’s June 21, 2014, death.

Assistant District Attorney Juliet Aldridge told the jury Tuesday that Huff died as a result of a planned robbery by Tanner and his former co-defendant Rodnie Maurice Stokes, 27. His defense from attorneys Rose Priddy and Larry Duttweiler is that Tanner was “duped” and played no part in the attempted robbery or shooting.

Aldridge called Huff’s mother, Mary Huff, as her last witness before resting around 3 p.m. Wednesday. Living right around the corner, she received a call and heard from her son, “Mama, I’ve been shot, I’ve been shot,” she testified.

Medical responders arrived on scene roughly seven minutes after the call came into 911 dispatch, rushing him to Northeast Georgia Medical Center.

Mary Huff said she spoke with her son on June 19, 2014, after he was unconscious for two weeks.

She asked how this had happened and who was responsible.

“He couldn’t say many words at one time, because he barely could get it out, but he said ‘Leshan Tanner,’” Mary Huff said.

Mary Huff said her son also told her that “little monster” was involved, though she said she was unsure what that meant.

Cedric Huff, 41, died overnight on June 21, 2014.

Gainesville Police Investigator Gordon Hendry said he visited the hospital six to eight times trying to interview the Gainesville man.

Tanner decided not to testify Wednesday evening when addressed by Superior Court Judge Andrew Fuller.

Stokes pleaded guilty last week to a lesser charge of voluntary manslaughter, receiving a 40-year sentence. The current sentencing would have Stokes in confinement for the first 20 years, followed by probation.

The jury will return around 9 a.m. today to hear closing arguments and Fuller’s instructions before entering deliberation.

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