In the Courts: Jury deliberations continue in BAFB Airman murder trial

Local News

UPDATE: The jury in the murder trial of a Barksdale Airman continue to deliberate. 

Airman First Class Isaiah Edwards is accused of fatally stabbing Airman First Class Bradley Hale, in the temporary quarters they shared during a deployment at Andersen Air Force Base in Guam.

ORIGINAL: After a week-and-a-half long Court Martial, the fate of the Barksdale Airman in the death of his roommate during a deployment in March 2018 is in the hands of the jury.

Airman First Class Isaiah Edwards is accused of fatally stabbing Airman First Class Bradley Hale, in the temporary quarters they shared during a deployment at Andersen Air Force Base in Guam.

Both Hale and Edwards were assigned to the 2nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron as Electronic Warfare Journeymen.

The seven-member panel has spent the past days listening to testimony from witnesses who heard the altercation, to investigators, forensic specialists, doctors, and people who knew and worked with Edwards and Hale.

On Monday, Edwards took the stand in his own defense, admitting he killed Hale, but it was in self-defense. He admitted he punched Hale, but said Hale then grabbed Edwards’ knife and threatened him with it. Edwards said he took the knife and stabbed Hale three times in the neck.

However, testimony from examining doctors said Hale was stabbed three times in the neck, but there were 11 incised (open) wounds and nine defensive wounds in his hands.

In closing arguments, the prosecution utilized a power point presentation to emphasize the violence of the attack, showing photos of the open wounds in Hale’s neck, his head in a pool of blood, as well as knife wounds in his upper body and hands.

In his closing arguments, Edwards’ defense attorney reminded jurors it was on the prosecution, not the defense, to prove his client’s guilt. He said if Edwards had intentionally killed Hale, he wouldn’t have made the initial 911 calls.

The panel of members (jurors) can find Edwards not guilty, or choose between murder, voluntary manslaughter or the lessor charge of aggravated battery. If one of those verdicts is selected, they then will decide on whether the murder or battery was committed in was self-defense.

To reach a guilty verdict, two-thirds of the members – or five of the seven – must agree.

The members went into deliberations at 4:12 p.m. Tuesday afternoon, recessed at 5:30 p.m. and will resume deliberations at 8:30 Wednesday morning in the Federal Courthouse in Shreveport.

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