Nathaniel Simms testified for second day in South Capitol Street slayings

A contrite defendant in the South Capitol Street murder trial in D.C. Superior court took the stand for a second day Thursday.

Self-confessed Nathaniel Simms testified against his former friends and described what led up to the March 30, 2010 massacre on South Capitol Street. The slayings, which took place over about a week, left five people dead.

There are now five defendants on trial for the slayings.

Simms testified that after the defendants and siblings Orlando and Sanquan Carter allegedly murdered Jordan Howe, 20, while shooting into a crowd over a missing bracelet, within hours police arrested Sanquan Carter.

But brother Orlando Carter was back at their street hangout at 6th and Chesapeake SE.

According to Simms testimony, one of Howe's associates came upon Orlando Carter as he stood in front of this barber shop trying to shoot him in the head. Twice the gun misfired, but the third time it discharged.

One bullet grazed Orlando Carter's head, another hit him in the shoulder. He survived. Simms testified Orlando Carter said to him: "Them (obscenity) tried to do me. It's all good because we going to (obscenity) that funeral up."

Simms said the alleged plotters who lived or sold drugs in this southeast neighborhood and busied themselves massing weapons, ammo, preparing to shoot at random mourners leaving Jordan Howe's funeral at St. Augustine's Catholic church in northwest. But Simms said everyone's credit was so bad, they couldn't rent a get-away van.

Howe's father called that divine intervention:

When they managed to get a van later that day, authorities say the defendants targeted a group of Howe's friends who'd come back to the SE neighborhood. Four were killed that night and six wounded.