Ambulance called after witness on stand at murder trial suffers medical condition
photo by: Mike Yoder
Story updated at 5:54 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2019:
Paramedics were called to the Douglas County District Courthouse Wednesday afternoon after a man suffered a medical condition on the witness stand during a murder trial.
The man, who said he was retired but owned a firearms business, was testifying during the trial of Tria L. Evans, 39, of Lawrence, charged with murder and other crimes in the 2017 homicide of the father of one of her children.
At roughly 4:40 p.m, the man began to cough, then his words began to slur, and one side of his face appeared to droop slightly.
Law enforcement officers tended to him until paramedics arrived, wheeling him out of the courtroom to an ambulance about 4:50 p.m.
Judge Kay Huff ended trial proceedings for the day and sent the jury home, explaining that the witness had suffered an apparent stroke and was taken to the hospital.
It remained to be seen whether the situation would affect the course of the trial. Carol Cline, an appointed attorney for the defendant, said she needed time to consider whether to ask for a mistrial, because she was unable to cross-examine the man due to the medical emergency.
The judge and lawyers planned to discuss the matter Thursday morning before jurors return to the courtroom.