The jury has begun deliberating in the retrial of Justin P. Gonzalez, who is charged with involuntary manslaughter in the 2012 death of Nicholas Sardina, 27, of Lawrence.
Gonzalez, 23, of Mission, hit Sardina in the head with a beer bottle during a fight at a party in Lawrence in February 2012. Sardina died hours later, the result, prosecutors say, of a brain clot that developed from the blunt force trauma. The first trial last December ended in a hung jury.
Gonzalez, the defense's only witness, finished testifying in own defense Wednesday morning before the state and defense offered their closing arguments. The state argued that Gonzalez was responsible for his Sardina's death and knew that striking Sardina as he did could potentially kill him. The defense argued that Gonzalez was acting to stop Sardina from harming one of Gonzalez's friends.
The jury started deliberating at about 1 p.m.