DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – After closing statements on Wednesday morning, the case of a fired Mesquite police officer accused of shooting an unarmed man is now in the hands of the jury.
The jury in the trial of Derick Wiley must decide if the officer violated law by using deadly force in the shooting or if his actions were reasonable.
Wiley faces five to 99 years if he is convicted in the shooting.
In November 2017, Wiley ordered Lyndo Jones to get out of his truck and threatened to shoot him. The whole incident was captured on body cam and shown during the trial.
The two men got into a tussle while Jones was on the ground. As Jones tried to get away, Wiley shot him twice.
Prosecutors told the jury Wiley’s actions as a police officer were unbecoming of an officer and that he used deadly force for no reason.
“The fact the defendant was a police officer does not excuse him for his unreasonable actions that day when he shot Lyndo Jones,” said prosecutor George Lewis. “This was not a reasonable use of force by this defendant.”
The defense said the officer should not be punished for doing his job.
“Please send a message to law enforcement. Send a message to this county that law enforcement does matter. And if more officers are backed up when they’re right then maybe when people are wrong, we will prosecute them. Maybe this will tone down some of the shootings that we have in our own county,” said defense attorney Kathy Lowthorp.
There were references to police shootings by both sides. The primary focus of the jury is the fired Mesquite officer who faces an aggravated assault charge that could put him in prison if convicted.