Defense questions witness' credibility in bar fight murder trial

by: Mark Becker Updated:


CHARLOTTE, N.C. - The murder trial of a former University of North Carolina football player entered its second day Friday.

Kenan Gay is charged with second-degree murder in the death of Robert Kingston outside a bar in the Dilworth community in 2012.

Prosecutors said Gay threw Kingston into the path of an oncoming car after a confrontation in the bar and prosecutors' first witness in the trial was the bar owner.

Allen Cole showed jurors how he said he saw Gay grab Kingston with both hands and push him into Park Road, “with all his strength.”

Cole said he watched seconds later as a car hit and killed Kingston as he lay in the road.

Cole also showed jurors video from cameras inside his bar that showed Kingston in the bar in the hour and a half leading up to the confrontation. 

The video, without audio, showed Kingston repeatedly approach Gay’s girlfriend when Gay grabbed him and pushed him toward the door. 

There is no video that shows what happened outside the bar.

Cole, a deputy sheriff in Lancaster County, told jurors he was stunned by what he saw.

But Gay’s attorney, David Rudolf, spent most of Friday afternoon attacking Cole and his version of events.

“I have a lot of reasons to doubt the credibility of whatever Mr. Cole says about what happened that night,” Rudolf said outside the courthouse.

Rudolf said Cole was protecting his business because tests showed Kingston’s blood alcohol was 0.29 --more than three times the legal limit.

Rudolf pointed out that Cole had declared bankruptcy in California before moving to the Charlotte area and that Kingston’s family is suing him and Gay for Kingston’s death.

“The best way for him to protect himself was to put it on Mr. Gay and that's exactly what he did,” Rudolf said.
Testimony is set to resume Monday.

Follow Mark Becker on Twitter for the latest updates from the trial. He'll be using #KenanGayTrial.

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