William McCullough Jr. lived near the victim's house and had been home on the morning in question. Sometime between 10:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m., he heard a knock at his door. McCullough went to the door and was met by a man who asked to borrow some tools. McCullough gave the man a driver ratchet and a socket, which he promised to return. The man did not return the tools.At approximately 10:50 a.m. on the morning of the murder, Katherine Williams, the victim's mother, received a phone call from her daughter, who lived some four or five houses away. A man had just knocked on the victim's door, asked if her husband was home, and inquired about borrowing some tools. When the victim replied that she had no tools, the man left. According to Katherine, her daughter told her that she was scared and “did not trust this guy.” The victim promised her mother that she would be at her house as soon as she finished curling her hair. Her daughter never arrived.Andy Gomez lived across the street from the victim, and was also home on the morning in question. While looking out his front window, he saw a man standing at the front door of the victim's residence. He watched the man grab the screen door and “make a B-line inside just real fast.” Approximately twenty minutes later, the man exited Debra's residence. According to Gomez, the man made rapid-head movements, as if he was checking to see if he was being watched. Suspicious, Gomez got in his car to follow the man. He caught up with him on a nearby street, where he observed the man talking to a female with spirals or braids in her hair.Glenda Pruitt lived at 128 Galloway Circle on the date in question. A man she had seen four or five times and knew as “Skip” walked up her street. Glenda, who wore her hair in long braids, had a short conversation with Skip as he passed by her house. McCullough, Gomez, and Pruitt identified Lee in a photographic lineup as the man they had seen in the victim's neighborhood on the morning of her murder.Debra's body was discovered in her bedroom at approximately 1:38 p.m. that same date. Three one hundred dollar bills that Debra's father, Stephen Williams, had given to her were missing from her wallet. This money had been part of a larger stack of crisp new bills Williams received in sequential order from the Arkansas Federal Credit Union. At Lee's trial, the State offered evidence that, at 1:53 p.m. on the day of the murder, Lee paid a debt at the Rent-A-Center with a one-hundred dollar bill. Of the three one-hundred dollar bills that the Rent-A-Center received on February 9, one of the bills bore a serial number that was two bills away from one of the bills that the victim's father had turned over to police.
During the State's case-in-chief, Glenda Pruitt testified that she saw Lee shortly after the murder when he passed in front of her house, which was located near the victim's residence. According to Pruitt, she asked Lee, “Where's the fire?” to which he responded, “Well, you are always asking me for weed.” Without objection, Pruitt testified that Lee responded that he did not use marijuana, but used cocaine.During cross-examination, Lee's counsel questioned Pruitt regarding her beliefs and practices as a Rastafarian, particularly with regard to the use of marijuana. He attacked her recollection of her conversation with Lee and whether that recollection was impaired by her use of marijuana. During redirect examination, over Lee's objection, the trial court permitted the State to present the entire conversation between Pruitt and Lee. According to Pruitt, she asked Lee whether he had cocaine “running all through [his] veins,” to which he responded, “Yes. It is running all through me.” Pruitt then stated, “Don't you know it (cocaine) is poison?” to which Lee responded, “I'm going to get some now.”