Friday, March 12, 2010

KY: Jury acquits man of killing neighbor: "A Carter Circuit Court jury on Wednesday wasted no time in deciding to acquit Timothy Emerson in the shooting death of his neighbor, Richard Lawrence. The seven-man, five-woman panel deliberated for only about an hour and 10 minutes before returning the not-guilty verdict. Emerson, 51, of Fighting Fork, was charged with murder and could’ve gotten 20 years to life in prison if convicted of that charge. Jurors also had the option of convicting him of first- or second-degree manslaughter or reckless homicide. Instead, the panel found that Emerson was privileged to act in self-defense when he shot the 41-year-old Lawrence in the face with a 12-gauge shotgun on Aug. 8. Curtis said he believed the panel’s conclusion that the shooting was justified was the correct one. “Richard Lawrence was looking for trouble,” he said. “Tim wasn’t looking for trouble.” Barbara Lawrence and her daughter, Katie, 12, were living in Emerson’s trailer at the time of the shooting because Richard and Barbara Lawrence had taken out domestic-violence petitions against one another and weren’t supposed to have any contact. Barbara Lawrence acknowledged during her testimony that her husband could be violent. She said he had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder and tended to be abusive when he was off his medication and drinking.... Emerson told jurors that Richard Lawrence then began violently kicking the door while threatening to kill him. Emerson had been in custody since the shooting."

Crazy Canada: "A Quebec store owner who tried to defend his property from robbers by firing a hunting rifle could face criminal charges for negligent use of a firearm. At about 1:30 a.m. on Tuesday, Quebec provincial police in Shawinigan, Que. were called to an apparent robbery at the Grand-Mere Auto Neige store. When they arrived, they discovered evidence of a robbery, including a broken window. They also noticed bullet cartridges and traces of blood. Police don't know if the blood came from the thieves, and, if it did, whether they were shot or if they cut themselves on the broken glass. Neighbours told the police that the store owner, who lives on top of the business, fired a hunting rifle into the air to chase off the suspects. The owner was arrested. Police spokesperson Eloise Cossette said investigators will try to determine if the store owner committed any infractions relating to gun usage. The suspects are still at large."

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