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Dating websites and tracking device: Data from Greg Leon's phone submitted in court shows websites phone user visited in weeks leading up to shooting

After four days of testimony, the state called its last few witnesses to discuss data extracted from defendant Greg Leon's phone, as well as the victim's autopsy.

LEXINGTON COUNTY, S.C. — The state has rested its case in the Greg Leon murder trial after four days of witness testimony.

Leon is the Lexington restaurant owner charged with killing his wife's lover in February 2016.

On Friday, witnesses spoke about the gunshot wounds that victim Arturo Bravo Santos sustained and evidence extracted from the defendant's phone. 

The last pieces of evidence submitted by the state included images and diagrams from the victim's autopsy. Dr. Janice Ross performed the autopsy and demonstrated how the bullets traveled using attorney Rick Hubbard as a model. 

Ross testified the bullets traveled through Santos' back, going out the front of his body near his armpit. The prosecution pointed out this means Santos was facing away from Leon — not toward him — suggesting there was no threat to Leon as the defense claims.

On cross-exam, the defense referred to one of Ross's previous reports where she wrote that Santos likely had his hand raised when he was shot the first time.

In court on Friday, however, Ross said she changed her opinion recently within the past several weeks while reviewing the court case. 

The defense took issue with this, wondering why it suddenly changed seven years after the initial report and why it was not noted in subsequent reports.

Sgt. Michael Phipps with the Lexington County Sheriff's Department testified today that Leon's phone has data from a month before the shooting that showed he'd visited dating websites. 

Prosecuting attorney Suzanne Mays asked Phipps if the data on Leon's phone could have meant the user was looking for a particular profile on the dating site, suggesting Leon was searching to see if his wife had an account on these websites. Phipps said the user would have had access to whatever service the site provided.

The defense argues this doesn't mean their client was searching these sites. Instead, they suggested this could have been anyone using his phone, as his daughters had done.

Another witness with the Drug Enforcement Administration testified about an incident mentioned Thursday in court. A witness who worked as an informant for the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division, Ruby, said she got a call from a man who said his name was "Ricardo."

On the call, Ruby told agents that the man said he was a part of "Los Zetas," a violent Mexican cartel gang. According to Ruby, the man said he would hunt down Greg Leon and kill him to get "retribution" for Santos' death.

On the stand, the DEA investigator was asked if this was common practice by known members of "Los Zetas" or members of other Mexican gangs. The investigator said he was unaware of this practice ever being utilized in the cases he's seen.

The defense did not cross-examine this witness.

After the state rested its case, the defense motioned to dismiss it for insufficient evidence — standard in most cases — saying the state did not meet the burden of proof.

The judge dismissed the motion, and now the defense will have its turn.

The trial should resume with the defense's first witness on Monday at 11 a.m.

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