A state appellate court has denied the appeals of four New Jersey gang members convicted in a witness intimidation murder.

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Jamell Scott, Lee Reeves, James Russell and Trishawn Cochran are serving prison terms for the murder of 55-year-old Thelma Vazquez in her Lakewood home in 2008.

The boyfriend of Vazquez's daughter had provided information to authorities that led to charges in a separate murder that had occurred in a Lakewood barber shop.

The suspects appealed their convictions on numerous grounds, including that the trial venue should have been moved. They also claimed the defendants should have had their cases severed and said the removal of a black woman from the jury pool deprived them of a fair trial.

Tuesday's appeals court ruling rejected the claims.


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