Journal-Times (Grayson, KY)

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March 12, 2010

Emerson found not guilty


March 10, 2010 —

“He had me scared,” Emerson testified. “I knew I couldn’t handle him. He outweighed me, and I had an injured hand. I knew I couldn’t do anything with him.”

Emerson said once the door was closed, he thought the incident was over.

“Then I heard him hollering really loud and heard loud bangs on the door. Barbara had told me about his violent temper, and now he was yelling that he was going to kill me. He kicked the door again, and said again, he was going to kill me. I was scared…I pulled the trigger.”

According to Dr. Christen Marie Roth, with the medical examiner’s office in Frankfort, Lawrence was hit on the left side of his face and neck with multiple pellets from a 12-gauge shotgun.

The pellets traveled through a diamond-shaped glass window before hitting Lawrence. Blood tests proved Lawrence’s blood alcohol level was .163. The limit illegal to drive is .08. Roth said the alcohol level in Lawrence’s body was double that.

Roth said the cause of Lawrence’s death was gunshot wound to the face that caused vascular injury to the neck, ”He bled to death,” she testified. “

Following pulling the trigger, Emerson looked out the broken window to see Lawrence facedown in the yard.

During cross-examination, Conn asked Emerson if he had squatted over Lawrence’s body, as police had testified he did. “Sheriff’s Deputy Brandon Cox said when he got to the scene you were over him. Were you crying?” Conn asked.

With his hands over his face, Emerson began to tear up. “Yes, sir I was crying. I had just killed a man. I will hate what I did for the rest of my life. But I was trying to protect my life. I was scared. I was scared. He was kicking in the door and saying he was going to kill me. I was scared.”

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