Curtis Reeves says he had no choice in the Pasco theater killing
Testifying on Thursday, Reeves said he feared for his life when he fatally shot Chad Oulson after he complained about Oulson's cell phone use.
A retired police SWAT commander testified he fatally shot a man in a movie theater eight years ago during an argument sparked by cellphone usage because he feared he was about to be attacked by a person he said “looked like a monster.”
Former Tampa police captain Curtis Reeves said Thursday he shot 43-year-old Chad Oulson in 2014 because the younger man was about to attack him after he complained about Oulsen’s cellphone use during previews.
Surveillance video shows Oulson grabbing Reeves' popcorn and throwing it at him.
Reeves, now 79, said he believed he had no choice, saying his seated position and his poor health made it impossible to defend himself with his hands.
The trial has been delayed for years because of a lengthy Stand Your Ground changes in judges, and the pandemic.
In 2017, a judge denied Reeves’ motion to have the charges against him dismissed because of Stand Your Ground.
Reeves faces charges of second-degree murder and aggravated battery. Reeves was released from jail six months after the shooting and has been living under house arrest.
Reeves faces a life term if convicted.
WUSF reporter Steve Newborn contributed to this report.