Bartender describes ‘scuffle’ outside nightclub as Nelson Lugela murder trial continued Tuesday
The defence called its first witness as the second-degree murder trial of Nelson Lugela continued on Tuesday.
The defence called a bartender to discuss what she heard and saw that night.
She described serving a man in a red vest and his friends multiple rounds of drinks throughout the night.
When the bar closed, she said a “scuffle” broke out outside the bar, where she was having a smoke.
She said she heard someone say, “Where’s the gun, do you have the gun?” before she saw the man in the red vest raise a gun, she told the court.
She said she heard four shots as she ran for cover.
The court heard in earlier testimony last week that Lugela had been wearing a white-collared shirt on the night of the shooting.
The bartender claims a man in a white-collared shirt was standing beside the shooter.
It’s the first time the court has heard testimony that suggests someone else may have pulled the trigger. A photo entered as evidence and taken by police right after Lugela’s arrest shows him wearing a white polo shirt.
During cross-examination, prosecutor Thomas Spark pointed out Stevenson told police hours after the shooting that she didn’t get a good look at the gunman.
“I was very concerned. I had a lot of anxiety. I had a lot of shock. I didn’t want to like improperly identify somebody,” she said. “It was hard for me to even communicate and talk.”
Hicks’ mother, Renee Hill, has been at the trial. Wearing a T-shirt with a picture of her son in his Michigan State football uniform on the front, Hill said Tuesday she thought her son would be safe when he left his native Detroit to play football in Canada.
“If Mylan was going to get hurt, lose his life, I’d be the first to say it was where we live. You know, it was in Detroit. I would be the first to say that but Mylan came here and I was so glad,” Hill said Tuesday. “I even told my husband I’m so glad he’s going over there, he’s out of here to safety.
“To get here and not last a year … you know what I’m saying? That just broke my heart.”
Both the Crown and defence have finished presenting evidence. Closing arguments are scheduled for Friday.
Hill said she will return to Calgary for the verdict but, either way, she is at peace.
“Whether the judge comes back with a guilty or not guilty verdict, I’m going to be okay,” said Hill. “I will always drill it home that Mylan is better off than we are.”
The judge will reserve his decision in the case until January.
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With files from The Canadian Press.
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