Prosecutors wrapping up in Daniel Willis re-trial

Prosecutors started wrapping up the case against former Bastrop County Deputy Daniel Willis with the help of Jonathan Priest.

The former Denver detective testified last year for Travis County prosecutors in the failed attempt to prosecute former APD detective Charles Kleinert. That case involved the shooting of Larry Jackson during a struggle.

Priest was paid $290 an hour to review the actions of Daniel Willis at a domestic disturbance call 2 years ago. According to Priest, the deputy did a lot right, but the decision to fire two shots was not reasonable.

Yvette Smith was killed that night. Her twin sister, Yvoone Williams, believes Willis should be convicted for her murder.

"I do believe justice is some form of  time being served, he committed a crime, you know his family is dealing with what they are dealing with but we lost Yvette, she is not here anymore. They still have their son," said Williams.

According to Priest, Willis should have waited, remained under cover and  re-assesed the situation. Defense Attorney Robert McCabe disagrees with that opinion.

"You have to look at the totality, you've  got armed subjects, we've got fighting we've got intoxication, we have darkness and we have an officer who had been on the street for 9 months. All of those factor into whether or not Daniel Willis acted reasonably or not."

Just before Yvette Smith was shot she reportedly was trying to get a gun away from the son of her boyfriend. A 911 caller, who was inside the house, described the intense struggle that continued after Willis arrived. Willis was warned that the gunman was at the front door. What he didn't know was that when Smith camet o the door, the gun was no longer in play.

Judge Albert McCaig was reminded that current law allows law enforcement officers to use deadly force if they perceive an immediate threat. While prosecutors tried to downplay that, Priest admitted a Supreme Court ruling has made what's known as objective reasonableness a corner stone in most use of force policies.

"The state wants the court to set a new standard ,they want to change the standard, what we want is the court not to legislate from the bench we want the court to follow the well established law in Graham v Conner and in doing so we believe the court will acquit our client," said McCabe.

Smith's family believes its time for a new standard.

"I think people should be properly trained before they are released to be on the street," said Williams who hopes that will be her sister's legacy.

The prosecution is expected to rest Monday morning after putting on witnesses who will talk about Yvette Smith.

The defense claims they have experts who will testify next week that Willis acted within the law.

Up Next:


  • Popular

  • Recent

WATCH FOX 7 NEWS LIVE

FOX 7 News streams at the following times (all times Central):


Monday - Friday

4:30 a.m. - 10 a.m.

12 p.m. - 12:30 p.m.

5 p.m. - 6 p.m.

9 p.m. - 10:30 p.m.

Saturday

6 a.m. - 8 a.m.

6 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

9 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Sunday

6 a.m. - 8 a.m.

5 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.

9 p.m. to 10 p.m.



Schedule subject to change in the event of network sports coverage.

We also stream press conferences and other breaking news coverage from time to time. When we are not in a live newscast, you will see replays of the most recent broadcast.

To enter full screen Mode click the button.

For closed captioning, click on the button while in full screen mode.

Desktop/tablet users: To choose the stream's video quality, click on the button (while in full screen mode) and choose from 432p or 270p.

Mobile users:The video quality default is to your phone's settings.

Please allow time for buffering. If the stream stalls, refresh your browser. Thanks for watching

Stories You May Be Interested In - Includes Advertiser Stories