Jury selected in trial of men accused of in shooting death of Nashville nurse

Posted at 4:11 PM, January 23, 2023 and last updated 7:21 AM, January 25, 2023

By: Caroline Sutton

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — A jury has been selected in the trial of two men accused of killing a Nashville nurse in 2020.

Devaunte Hill and James Cowan are facing life in prison without parole if they are found guilty of the death of Caitlyn Kaufman. Both men are charged with first-degree murder.

(Video Credit: WTVF)

In December 2020, Kaufman was driving on Interstate 440 to St. Thomas West Hospital for her shift as an ICU nurse when six bullets were shot into her car — one hitting and killing her. She was able to pull into the shoulder before she died.

In the month following her death, Hill and Cowan were arrested after a key witness tipped off police and turned in the gun allegedly used in the shooting.

The two men will be tried together, each with their own attorney.

The twelve jury members and two alternates will not be sequestered during this trial. Opening statements are expected to begin as son as the jury is seated.

 

CASE BACKGROUND

On the evening of December 3, 2020, Caitlyn Kaufman was driving along Interstate 440 on her way to work at Ascension Saint Thomas Hospital when she was shot and killed.

According to Metro Police, a Metro Parks officer had seen a Mazda SUV on the right shoulder against the guard rail and assuming the driver had crashed, he approached to help. Inside they found Kaufman, who had died from a gunshot wound.

Investigators said there were bullet holes in the window of the car. They believe the bullets were fired into the SUV.

Detectives said six rounds were fired into the vehicle.

A week later, on December 11, then 21-year-old Devaunte L. Hill was taken into custody and charged with criminal homicide.

A day later, a second suspect, James Edward Cowan, also known as James Lillard was arrested and charged with first-degree murder.

In January 2021, a witness testified that he heard one of the suspects confess to killing Kaufman and said the suspect claimed they shot the nurse because she may have cut them off on I-440.

 

This story was originally published Jan. 23 by WTVF in Nashville, a E.W. Scripps company.

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