Archive for Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Granada shooting trial opens today

Topeka suspect faces first-degree murder, battery charges

April 17, 2007

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Jury is selected for Granada shooting case

A jury is selected to hear the case of a Topeka man charged with killing one man and injuring another outside a downtown Lawrence nightclub early last year. Enlarge video

A trial set to begin this morning will delve into a 2006 shooting outside a local nightclub that left one man dead and sparked a debate about downtown safety.

Attorneys will give opening statements today in Douglas County District Court in the trial of Rashawn T. Anderson, 20, Topeka, who is charged with first-degree murder for the Feb. 5, 2006, shooting of Robert Earl Williams, 46, Lawrence. Anderson also is charged with aggravated battery for gunshots that injured a Kansas City, Kan., man, Pierre Burnette.

The shooting happened around 2 a.m. outside the Granada, 1020 Mass., after what Williams' widow has described as a spontaneous argument among strangers.

Defense attorneys will argue that the case is a "whodunit," and that there's room for confusion about who fired the shots.

"We don't believe there's any contest to it," District Attorney Charles Branson said. "We believe the evidence shows that this is the person that pulled the trigger that night."

The trial is scheduled to last at least until the end of the week and to include 15 to 20 witnesses.

During jury selection Monday, attorneys quizzed potential jurors about their attitudes on subjects including Topeka and the safety of Lawrence's downtown.

"Is there some possibility that the fact that this crime occurred at a place where you go quite often : does that give you any hesitation about being a juror in the case?" defense attorney Tom Bartee asked one potential juror, who answered, "No."

Bartee asked some jurors whether Anderson's or other witnesses' ties to Topeka would influence their opinions of the case.

One local bar owner remarked after the shooting that he thought many problems at Lawrence drinking establishments "center on Topeka."

Comments

leadrain 8 years ago

As if the "GRANASTY " needed more bad publicity, they link a shooting that happenend OUTSIDE after hours with their already sterling reputation. Maybe, they think that since they may have been patrons on that evening it's the venues responsibility to make sure nobody acts the fool. But honestly, can you imagine how a confrontation between bouncers and a gun-weilding moron would pan out? I'd guess that the next day there would be a new classified for " honest, unflinching, BULLETPROOF bouncers. Just let the Granada burn itself out, their doing a pretty good job on their own without anyones' help.

oldgoof 8 years ago

leadrain writes: "Maybe, they think that since they may have been patrons on that evening it's the venues responsibility to make sure nobody acts the fool. " . well, maybe not directly...but this event didn't occur in front of South Park.

Raider 8 years ago

Maybe if we stop having these hip-hop shows and hip-hop nights (Last Call) then shootings, guns, and out-of-town "gangstas" might be reduced in downtown Lawrence. Did anyoen ever stop to think of the type of element that this genre brings with it?

Bobbi Walls 8 years ago

Raider, I listen to hip hop, and I can guarantee you I am no "gangsta". Just because some people are ignorant, and can't control themselves, does not mean everyone should pay.

rhagg 8 years ago

leadrain:

Exactly how is The Granada "burning itself out"? They were patrons of a show, long after the show is over the shooting happens...in front of Kenos....

i am interested in your thoughts. This turned high profile for no reason. Other than this incident, what else has the Granada done so poorly that other establishments haven't also experienced?

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