Dennis Tribble is accused of intentionally gunning down his unarmed neighbor Michael Borello in September 2000.
Tribble admits he killed Borello but he claims it was justified self-defense because he believed the unarmed Borello was going to kill him.
In closing arguments, prosecutors said the self-defense claim is unbelievable because Tribble had plenty of chance to get away from Borello after he shot him once, but instead chose to chase him down and shoot him three more times.
"There was no reasonable belief at any point in time that he was in danger of being killed or seriously injured," Lamoille Deputy Prosecutor Christopher Moll said. "And he must have reasonably believed he was in imminent danger."
The prosecutor discounted evidence that Tribble was not fully responsible for his actions because he was diagnosed with paranoia and delusional syndrome-- pointing out that three psychiatrists agreed Tribble was capable of understanding his actions when he killed Borello.
Tribble's lawyer disagreed, claiming his paranoia meant his fears of Borello were real to him.
"This is not a fellow who had ever been in a life-threatening situation before. He'd never shot anybody before. And when he shot that person that person did not act like he thought he would. Nothing appeared to happen," said Daniel Maguire, Tribble's lawyer. "The nature of what he's thinking in terms of delusions, perceptions and reality."
The jury will have five choices: first-degree murder, second-degree murder, involuntary manslaughter, voluntary manslaughter, or innocent because it was a case of self-defense. The judge has indicated they will be allowed to deliberate into the evening as long as they like and he's also indicated if they don't reach a decision this evening he may bring them back tomorrow for a very rare Saturday session to continue their deliberations.
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