OZARK, Ala. — An Alabama jury is expected to begin deliberations soon in the trial of a white police officer charged with killing an unarmed black man in 2016.
News outlets reported that testimony concluded Thursday with Montgomery police Officer Aaron Cody Smith taking the stand to describe the fatal shooting of 58-year-old Gregory Gunn. Prosecutors and a defense lawyer gave diverging different descriptions of the fatal encounter in closing arguments.
Gunn ran after Smith had stopped him for a stop-and-frisk as he was walking home. The defense maintains Smith fired in self-defense because Gunn was grabbing a painter’s pole from a porch, but prosecutors say Gunn was never a threat.
The trial was moved from Montgomery to Ozark, about 85 miles (135 kilometers) away, because of publicity.