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WFAE's coverage of the case of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Officer Randall Kerrick charged with voluntary manslaughter in the death of Jonathan Ferrell. The court case ended in a mistrial.

Kerrick Trial Update: Judge Denies Defense Request To Visit Scene

Defense attorney George Laughrun told Superior Court Judge Robert Ervin that officer Randall Kerrick will testify during his trial.

Update 10:35am

Superior Court Judge Robert Ervin denied a defense motion in the Kerrick trial for the jury to view the scene where the former CMPD police officer fatally shot 24-year-old Jonathan Ferrell in 2013. Defense attorney Michael Greene said the jury needed to see the scene in order for Kerrick to get a fair trial. He said the ditch where Ferrell and Kerrick ended up during the shooting was not measured, nor was the one where one of the officers on the scene was parked.

“The jury needs a night view of the scene…from the same perspective of the three officers on the scene,” Greene said. “The jury is determining this man’s liberty and needs to see this.”

The prosecution said the focus is on the video and what happened when Ferrell walked and ran in the direction of police and the shooting. State prosecutor Steven Arbogast told the court that the defense could measure the scene at any time and added that the markers from the scene had been painted over and that positioning police vehicles there now would not be accurate.

“There are plenty of photos out there that they can get accurate pictures that show accurate views and lighting of the scene,” Arbogast said. “We don’t have to go out there at 2 a.m.” That’s when the shooting occurred.

The judge agreed with the prosecution and denied the request for the jury to do a night visit of the scene.

“I would have to replicate the cars, the moon’s phase, and if the media is there with lights, wouldn’t that distort [the scene]?” Ervin asked. The judge said he did visit the scene during the day. Jurors are not permitted to visit the scene under court orders.

Campagna testified yesterday that contrary to Kerrick’s assertion, CMPD policy does not require an officer to draw their gun whenever another officer on a scene draws their Taser.