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LEO trainer and crime scene reconstruction expert take the stand on Day 8 of Curtis Reeves trial

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Posted at 5:41 PM, Feb 23, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-23 18:05:42-05

DADE CITY, Fla. — As the Curtis Reeves trial continued Wednesday, the defense team called expert witnesses such as an LEO trainer and a crime scene reconstruction expert.

Reeves, 79, is being tried for second-degree murder and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon in the 2014 shooting of Chad Oulson, 43, in a Wesley Chapel movie theater after an argument over the use of a cell phone.

Wednesday, the first expert shown was Dr. Michael Foley, a forensic radiologist. Reeves' defense team showed a video of Foley's previously-recorded testimony, taken during the 2017 "stand your ground" hearings where Judge Barthle denied immunity. In his video testimony, Dr. Foley describes X-rays and MRI records that were taken in 2015. The records show Reeves suffered from arthritis and osteoporosis in the bones and joints of his hands, wrists, shoulders, knees, and hips.

Dr. Michael Knox was the second expert witness on the stand. He worked with the Jacksonville Sheriffs department and was a lead crime scene investigator and training coordinator. Knox's testimony was very similar to when he testified back in 2017. Focusing mostly on how officers are trained to handle crime scenes. Examples include separating witnesses and documenting everything. Also discussed were backlighting and silhouettes.

Next was Dr. Roy Bedard, a use-of-force and defensive-tactics expert who also previously testified in 2017. The state says his previous testimonies were sympathetic towards Reeves. Bedard was asked mostly about the use of force and the differences between an LEO and a citizen in a self-defense situation.

The trial is scheduled to resume Thursday at 8:30 a.m. The judge in the case warned jurors that Friday could be the longest day of the trial based upon the witness list.