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Jury finds Ronald Gasser guilty of manslaughter in death of Joe McKnight

Jury finds Ronald Gasser guilty of manslaughter in death of Joe McKnight

The jury retired to deliberate at 12:30 p.m. after hearing almost 90 minutes of closing arguments from prosecutors and Gasser's attorney. Sentencing is scheduled for March 15. It ended at Behrman Highway and Holmes Boulevard. Gasser claimed the shooting was in self-defense, and he did not testify during the six-day trial.

Prosecutors told jurors Friday the evidence shows Gasser angrily pursued McKnight and shot him from inside his own vehicle.

"We offer our most honest condolences to the McKnight family and hope they can find peace in knowing that justice has been served in this case".

Defense attorney Matt Goetz says his client had every right to defend himself.

Prosecutors didn't deny that McKnight drove dangerously before he was killed. He chose to nearly run Ronnie off the road.

In this handout image provided by the NFL, Joe McKnight of the New York Jets poses for his NFL headshot circa 2011 in Florham Park, New Jersey.

But Shute said Gasser escalated the danger, taking McKnight's driving as a challenge.

Shute acknowledged that McKnight had a hand on the open, passenger side window of Gasser's vehicle before he was shot.

Assistant District Attorney Shannon Swaim summed up the case by telling jurors that Gasser was the aggressor as the incident drew to a close.

"What do you think he was doing when he went to the window, inviting him to tea?" he asked.

They may also find him guilty of a lesser charge, including manslaughter or negligent homicide.

Second-degree murder, which carries a mandatory life sentence, is the killing of a human being when the offender has a specific intent to kill or inflict great bodily harm.

A grand jury later returned a second-degree murder indictment against Gasser. Jurors began deliberating Friday afternoon and came to a conclusion not long after.

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