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“I thought he was going to kill me”: Day 2 of Michael Davis manslaughter trial

Former Deputy Michael Davis is on trial over the fatal shooting of 17-year-old Hunter Brittain,...
Former Deputy Michael Davis is on trial over the fatal shooting of 17-year-old Hunter Brittain, who was killed during a traffic stop in 2021 near Cabot.(KATV via CNN Newsource)
Published: Mar. 16, 2022 at 8:17 PM CDT
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CABOT, Ark. (KARK/KAIT) - Wednesday marked the second day in the trial of former Lonoke County deputy Michael Davis, who was charged with manslaughter for the death of 17-year-old Hunter Brittain.

According to content partner KARK, the judge opened the court by stating she had heard someone from Tuesday speaking to a witness who was set to testify today. In response, the judge ordered everyone to be dismissed by rows, separately and would no longer be allowed to congregate in front of the building or hallways.

The court watched camera footage from Deputy Nathan Rice, who was called by Davis and the first to arrive after shots were fired by Davis. It opened with a “shots fired” call over the radio.

The video showed Rice pulling up to the scene and demanding Brittain’s friend, Jordan King, to put his hands up and not move. The officer then directed King to put his hands behind his back, put him in handcuffs, and preceded to put King in the back of Rice’s patrol car.

The video cut off after King cleared the passenger side of Hunter’s truck and walked around to the driver’s side, ending right before Hunter is seen, according to KARK.

The court also saw photos of the crime scene, which included a close-up of the jug of oil Brittain was said to be holding, pools of blood, shell cases, and Brittain’s shoe which had come off.

The court also viewed the footage detailing the night from Davis’ perspective.

Davis told the court he was en route to assist Rice with a call when he saw Hunter’s truck stopped in the road with its reverse lights on.

Davis then said he waited in a church parking lot to watch the truck pass to run the tags. He added he was worried the truck had been stolen because it was beaten up and driving “strangely”.

This is when Davis said he called Deputy Rice, according to KARK.

Davis said he turned his lights on, and then Brittain pulled into oncoming traffic, stopped, and sped off to turn into an auto body parking lot.

He then said Brittain jumped out of his truck and immediately began “digging” in the back of the truck. Davis gave commands to “stay in the vehicle” and “show me your hands” multiple times, but Brittain “didn’t say a word”.

“He wasn’t complying... I thought he was going to kill me,” Davis told the court in tears.

Once he and Rice detained Jordan and cleared the truck, Davis said he went back to his truck to get gloves to aid Brittain. Before he could help, Davis said a Cabot officer pulled him from the scene.

Davis faces between 3 to 10 years in prison if he is convicted.

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