Trials are underway in two Anchorage murder cases that occurred just days apart in 2016. 

In both trials on Tuesday, prosecutors called witnesses to the stand who either can't or don't want to remember the nearly 3-year-old crimes. 

A deadly family dispute 

On Dec. 20, 2016, Anchorage police learned about a domestic disturbance on Camelot Drive near Lionheart Drive and Boniface Parkway just before 10 p.m. The woman who called the police said her husband had pointed a gun at her head. The man, later identified by the Anchorage Police Department as 31-year-old Tino Faualo, had been fighting with his wife earlier that evening. 

Police say the woman then called and told her then 55-year-old father, Valu Valu Jr., who drove to the couple’s home to confront Faualo. The two men met in the driveway, APD stated, and moments later, a witness called police reporting shots had been fired outside. 

One of his daughters, Talatufi Mathias-Valu, testified she was in the car with Valu when the shooting happened. When questioned at length about what she heard and saw, and discrepancies between her testimony in court and what she told a grand jury, she said she didn't want to think about what happened. 

"I don't want to remember any of this," she said.

When asked if she didn't remember anything, Mathias-Valu clarified, "No, I don't want to remember this."  

The deadly shooting marked the 30th homicide in Anchorage during 2016, breaking the previous record at the time, which was 29 homicides reported in 1995.  

Christmas Eve 'Ninja' murders 

In a different courtroom Tuesday, prosecutors faced a similar issue with a hostile witness. 

The state is trying to prove Lamarkus Mann and Savon Wiley, both 25, were involved in the gruesome shooting deaths of 38-year-old Christopher Brooks and his 32-year-old wife Danielle Brooks on Christmas Eve 2016. 

Murder suspects Lamarkus Mann (left) and Savon Wiley (right) in court during their murder trial on July 25, 2019. (Nick Swann / KTVA)

 

Wiley and Mann are two of four men charged after Christopher and Danielle's 5-year-old son told police "ninjas" had killed his family. Police say a group of men went to the Brooks' home in order to steal drugs and money from them. 

Marika Meabon, who has children with Mann, took the stand after she was subpoenaed by the state. Prosecutors' questions for Meabon centered around a 2016 interview with investigators, in which she shared statements Mann made to her regarding his alleged involvement in the crime. 

Meabon answered most questions by saying "no" or "I don't remember."

At one point, when asked by the state, "You don't remember telling the officers the details about what happened to you?" Meabon replied, "No, I don't remember, that was three years ago."  

Prosecutors have an audio recording of Meabon's interview with investigators and are expected to play portions of it for the jury Wednesday.  

Anchorage police say Christmas Eve was the deadliest day of 2016, with three homicides reported in less than 24 hours.

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