Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Follow us:
Follow us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Subscribe to this news feed 

News

Rochester

Jury in Wyant Case to Resume Deliberations Friday

  • Text size: + -
Rochester: Jury in Wyant Case to Resume Deliberations Friday
Play now

Time Warner Cable video customers:
Sign in with your TWC ID to access our video clips.

  To view our videos, you need to
enable JavaScript. Learn how.
install Adobe Flash 9 or above. Install now.

Then come back here and refresh the page.

Deliberations are set to resume on Friday in the murder trial of Maxwell Wyant. Wyant is accused of shooting his former roommate C.J. Schoen in the back last February, at the house they once shared.

The jury has spent more than five hours going over this case and has not reached a verdict. With no indication why, but we're beginning to see where the jurors' doubts may be coming from.

There's a lot of evidence in this case, collected at different times and places, but jurors so far have only asked to review evidence from exactly when the actual shooting happened.

They've reviewed the 911 call, on which prosecutors say you can hear the actual gunshots. They've asked to review police photographs taken inside the home immediately after the shooting.

And finally Thursday, the jury asked to hear the testimony again from the key witness, Steve Hartman. Jurors want to hear Hartman's account of the moment this shooting took place.

The vital question in this case is, did Maxwell Wyant intentionally murder C.J. Schoen, or did Wyant only kill Schoen in self-defense?

Prosecutors say they've done all they can do to prove the intentional murder. The defense says, it simply wasn't enough.

"That's our burden to do that. So that was my intent, to provide in the closing that I don't believe this was self-defense, and I wanted to show that to the jury," said prosecutor Michael Harrigan.

"Each and every one of them had some significant problems in their testimony, and as you could tell from the closing, they contradicted each other, they contradicted themselves, contradicted prior statements... so there's a lot that's in question here," said James Nobles, defense attorney.

The jury will get a read back of Hartman's testimony on Friday morning, beginning at about 9:30 a.m. at the Hall of Justice. That's when the trial re-convenes.

YNN's Seth Voorhees reports on Thursday's closing statements

Rochester: Jury in Wyant Case to Resume Deliberations Friday
Play now

Time Warner Cable video customers:
Sign in with your TWC ID to access our video clips.

  To view our videos, you need to
enable JavaScript. Learn how.
install Adobe Flash 9 or above. Install now.

Then come back here and refresh the page.

One main point jurors will have to consider: was the shooting death of CJ Schoen an act of self-defense as the defendant claims; or was it cold-blooded, perhaps a planned action?

Testimony in Maxwell Wyant's murder trial lasted about a week. Wyant is accused of shooting Schoen twice with a shotgun last February at the Brighton home the two once shared.

During closing arguments, Wyant's lawyer characterized the case as "a mess;" saying that Wyant shot Schoen in self-defense.

Prosecutor Michael Harrigan called the killing an execution, saying in court that Wyant had earlier bragged he would kill Schoen if he ever saw him again. During those summations, the prosecutor held up the shotgun in question.

One key piece of evidence shown during the trial was Maxwell Wyant's videotaped interrogation by Brighton Police, in which Wyant tells an investigator that Schoen, high on drugs, tried to kill him.

"So, when you first displayed the shotgun, did it slow him down at all?"
"No! He just got more, more aggro and didn't care. Like, he didn't care. He felt he was invincible or something. He's always going on and on about how he's some sort of powerful being, this that and the other thing, meant for greatness, glory and some other cockeyed mania."
"It's a good case, it's a classic case of self-defense. Jury instruction I think is going to largely go in our favor," said Nobles.

"Intent can be formed in an instant, so that's something that I don't think necessarily I know or have to know. I do believe his intent, I believe his intent was in an instant; I also believe he had intent before he did this," Harrigan said.

Just before 5 p.m., the jury went back into the courtroom and asked to hear a 911 call made by CJ Schoen. Prosecutors said you can hear two shotgun blasts and some swearing by people in the house. They asked to hear that clip again.

Wyant faces a maximum of 25 years to life if convicted on the second degree murder charge.

Related Stories

10.11.12.248 ClientIP: 54.234.2.88, 23.0.160.61 UserAgent: CCBot/2.0 (http://commoncrawl.org/faq/) Profile: TWCSAMLSP