One of two Topeka men severely injured in a May shooting in Lawrence testified today in Douglas County District Court that he and his brother were caught in the middle of a lovers' quarrel between their sister and one of the men charged in the case.
Tommy Andrews, of Topeka, testified in a preliminary hearing that ended with Erick Shakeel Smith, 20, of Topeka, facing trial on two counts of aggravated battery.
Andrews said he and his brother were shot by a person riding in a car with Steven Michael Gigger, 29, of Topeka, when their sister confronted Gigger at about 3:40 a.m. on May 19 in the 800 block of Greever Terrace.
The two brothers were left in critical condition but survived. Andrews, speaking with difficulty because of a wound that left him in Kansas University Hospital for a week, said the group had just left the bar Club Magic, 804 West 24th St., when their sister, angry about a recent break up, and Gigger began arguing. Andrews said the argument escalated into a fight and then a shooting.
Andrews said in court that he could not positively identify Smith as the man who shot him and his brother. But Douglas County prosecutors pointed to other court testimony and evidence in accusing Smith of the shooting.
Gigger was originally arrested and charged along with Smith, but has since been indicted on federal gun charges instead. If convicted of carrying a firearm as a convicted felon, he could face up to 10 years in federal prison.
Smith, if convicted of aggravated battery, could face a prison sentence of between 38 months and 14 years for each count, depending on his criminal history. He is scheduled to appear in court again on Aug. 26.