(Watch the hearing live in the player above when court is in session. You may need to refresh your browser.)
The “stand your ground” hearing of retired police Captain Curtis Reeves draws towards its conclusion on Friday, with both sides expected to give their closing arguments. Reeves shot and killed Chad Oulson during an altercation at a movie theater three years ago, after Oulson was texting during previews. Reeves claims that he feared for his life after Oulson approached him, and shouldn’t be charged with any crimes due to Florida’s “stand your ground” law which allows deadly force if there is a reasonable fear of mortal danger. The hearing, which began last week, will determine whether Reeves will face a trial for second degree murder or gain immunity. You can watch the hearing in the player above, once court is in session.
On Thursday, the prosecution called several eye witnesses who were in the movie theater when the incident occurred. Each of them had a different story than Curtis Reeves. When Reeves testified, and when he spoke to police right after he shot Oulson, he claimed that Oulson had verbally threatened him and hit him in the face, with either his phone or his hand, and that’s why Reeves feared for his safety and pulled the trigger. None of the witnesses who took the stand on Thursday said they saw Oulson hit Reeves. In fact, one witness was worried that Reeves was going to start a fight with Oulson.
The only part of Reeves’ story that appeared to be corroborated when it comes to Oulson was that he may have thrown popcorn at Reeves. Several witnesses recalled seeing popcorn flying immediately before Reeves fired his gun, with some hearing Reeves comment about Oulson throwing popcorn.
Reeves’ defense will have their work cut out for them with their closing argument. If they can convince the judge that Reeves acted in self defense, he will no longer have to face charges. Otherwise, this case will move towards a trial.
[Image via screengrab]
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