Prosecutor Faulting 'Two Wolves Watching a Lamb'
Recalls 'We're not Gay & We're Going to Jack You!'
By Jeffrey Montgomery
The Triangle Foundation
The morning began with Judge Voigt reviewing 50 instructions for the jury. Closing arguments from Prosecutor Cal Rerucha and Defense team leader, Dion Custis, followed.
Rerucha delivered and cogent and compelling retelling of the events and conspiracy that ended with Shepard's vicious killing. Recalling the ill-fated meeting of Shepard, McKinney and Russell Henderson at the Fireside Lounge, where the prosecution maintains the plot to waylay and rob Shepard began, Rerucha likened the scene to "two wolves watching a lamb," before the three left the bar together.
The prosecutor ended his presentation to the jury by describing Shepard and making a plea. Shepard was "not an animal to be hung on a fence he loved, he cried" said Rerucha. "He needs your ability to follow the law in this case."
Shepard is the "missing piece of the puzzle. He fills every corner of this room," he concluded.
Describing his client variously as "not that bright," "a drug addict," by his nickname, "Dopey," "ugly in all respects," and "unsophisticated," Dion Custis admitted that McKinney is unsympathetic and that he killed Shepard.
In answering the question "Why?" which is what he told the jury was their ultimate job, the defense team leader suggested that methamphetamine addiction was the answer.
McKinney, he contended, was acting in a drug-influenced rage, after an alleged sexual advance by Shepard. Although he beat Shepard with anywhere from 12-20 blows to the head, McKinney didn't know what he was doing, was out of control, was in chaos, and so, Curtis argued, should be guilty of nothing more than manslaughter.