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LaShawn King On Trial For Attempted Murder Charge

LaShawn King
Natrona County Detention Center

The prosecution has rested and now the defense has a chance to prove that a Casper man did not try to kill his ex-girlfriend.

During the past 3 days, prosecutors have trying to convince a jury, that thirty-two year old LaShawn King, should be found guilty on charges of first degree attempted murder, kidnapping and 2 counts of aggravated assault.

The victim, Melissa Benson, testified about the night of May 6th 2011, saying that King beat her with a hammer several times, and fractured her skull in the process.

He then drove her around Casper, saying he was going to kill her, but then Casper police eventually found the two.

Benson said that King told her he had purchased a bus ticket to Detroit and was leaving to go home the next day, but wanted to spend one more night with her, and go to the movies.

She agreed, but once they got to movie theater parking lot, that’s where and when the attack took place.

A bus ticket agent testified, that a ticket to Detroit was not purchased in the days and weeks before the attack, and there was no purchase under King’s name.

A doctor testified that Benson’s injuries are the types of injuries a person would sustain if struck by a hammer, rather than a punch or a kick and that Benson’s left eye was swelled shut when she arrived at the ER.

Investigators also found blood stains on King, as well as stains in various areas of the vehicle…and that blood came from Benson.

They also found the hammer in the vehicle, which had King’s fingerprints on it.

Jurors also heard the 911 call that Benson made while she was in the back of the vehicle after the alleged attack, although there was no direct conversation between her and the 911 dispatcher.

The call ended abruptly when according to Benson, King found the cell phone and took it away from her.

She told jurors about her 3-year relationship with King, and how it became abuse.

Prosecutors also played a phone call that Benson recorded when King called her, several days before the attack.

During the call, King threatened to kill Benson a number of times.

She said that King was often suspicious that Benson was messing around with other guys.

In their opening statement, King’s defense is arguing that the investigation is biased and the case is steeped in reasonable doubt.

Defense attorney’s say that there’s no evidence at the scene of where the hammer attack allegedly took place, and that Benson has called the police often in the past, because she likes to manufacture confrontation.

The defense is questioning why there are no other reports of abuse filed to the police against King, assuming that it happened, and why the police have not suspected anyone else in the attack.

The trial is scheduled to wrap up today.

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