A key prosecution witness testified Friday he may have “exaggerated” some of what he told police about a fatal shooting at the Myrtle Place Apartments on Boulevard de Province in September 2010.
Gregory Henry, whose testimony Wednesday was interrupted when attorneys for Dominique Lamar Rivers asked for a mistrial, resumed and completed his testimony Friday after a state appeals court and Louisiana’s highest court refused to declare a mistrial.
The second-degree murder trial was scheduled to continue into the weekend.
Rivers, 25, is accused in the shooting death of Derrick Lucas Sr., 37, on Sept. 2, 2010, inside Lucas’ unit at the apartment complex off Old Hammond Highway.
Rivers also lived at the complex.
Henry’s taped police statement, which was at the heart of the mistrial request, was played Friday for an East Baton Rouge Parish jury. Henry gave that statement the day of the killing.
Rivers’ attorneys said they only learned of the taped statement Wednesday.
Prosecutors said all of the evidence in the case was made available to the defense last year.
Henry, who lived at the complex at the time of the slaying, told police he was sitting in his car in the complex parking lot when he saw Lucas enter his apartment and heard and saw him get hit on the head. He testified Friday he did not hear or see Lucas get struck.
Henry also told police Rivers was holding a gun when he saw Rivers force Lucas into Lucas’ apartment. He testified Friday he did not see a gun.
Henry further told police he saw Rivers leave Lucas’ apartment after the shots were fired. He testified Friday he did not see Rivers exit the apartment after the shooting.
“I might have exaggerated that,” Henry said under intense questioning by Margaret Lagattuta, one of Rivers’ attorneys.
Prosecutor Steve Danielson told the jury in his opening statement Wednesday that Lucas was shot three times in the head. He said the state will prove Rivers was the triggerman.
Scott Collier, one of Rivers’ attorneys, told jurors that Rivers is on trial for a crime he did not commit.
Prosecutors have said they believe Rivers was burglarizing Lucas’ apartment when Lucas came home early from work and surprised Rivers.
Rivers faces a mandatory sentence of life in prison if convicted as charged.