Flint man claims self-defense in fatal shooting outside Sunoco gas station
FLINT, MI – The attorney for a man accused of shooting and killing a 42-year-old man outside the Sunoco gas station on North Ballenger Highway and Flushing Road in March believes his client committed the act in self-defense.
Archie Hayman is representing Marquon L. Jackson, who is charged with open-air murder and felony firearms shooting in the March 15 early morning shooting death of Khogaly Mozzaffar.
Appearing before Genesee County District Court Judge Christopher R. Odette on Monday, May 2, for a preliminary review, Odette remanded the Jackson case to the circuit court for trial, but said there barely had enough evidence to show probable cause.
“I mean, when I say barely, I mean barely,” Odette said as she linked the matter. “(There are) barely probable grounds to believe that an open murder took place.”
Read more: Flint PD ID man found shot dead outside Sunoco gas station
Open murder includes both first and second degree murder. Now that Jackson’s case is in circuit court, he can plead as a defendant, proceed to trial, or accept any plea deal offered to him.
Preliminary examinations are essentially evidentiary hearings for crimes where prosecutors must present evidence amounting to at least probable cause that the crimes charged took place and that the accused committed them.
Before Odette linked the Jackson case, Hayman told her he did not dispute that his client shot and killed Mozzaffar, an incident that was captured on surveillance video and shown in court Monday. He, however, questions whether it was a murder.
“My client’s actions were totally in self-defense,” Hayman told the court. “The instruction would state that he has an honest and reasonable belief that if he can suffer serious bodily harm and/or death, that he is authorized to use deadly force to protect himself.”
Related: 1 killed in early morning shootout on west side of Flint
Monday’s preliminary examination lasted about two hours, including testimony from four witnesses as well as two surveillance video clips from the Sunoco gas station where the shooting took place.
Misty Spencer, the only cashier working at the Sunoco gas station on the morning of March 15, testified that she was working around 1 a.m. on the day the shooting took place.
Spencer said it was a slow night on the client side. She noticed that someone – later identified as Mozzaffar – had parked right outside the front door of the gas station with their vehicle still running and the driver’s door ajar. Spencer said it piqued his interest because it’s usually the behavior of someone about to rob a store or commit a snatch and run.
When Mozzaffar entered the store, Spencer said she saw him take a bag of pistachios from a shelf, open it, and start eating the nuts. When Spencer confronted Mozzaffar about the theft, she said he became verbally aggressive towards her.
“He said, ‘I’m not going to pay for s***, b****,'” he said, according to Spencer, who said he then told her she should call the police to look for him. go.
While Spencer was on the phone, Mozzaffar approached, eventually standing in front of the cash register. He started throwing pistachios at the cashier.
Another customer, a woman, entered the store. Spencer said she left the store after saying she forgot her EBT card.
Jackson was the next person to enter the store, according to Spencer. He grabbed some snacks and drinks and approached the cashier.
Surveillance video from the store shown in court shows the two men at the store’s checkout, with Spencer behind the cash register, on the phone. At one point, Mozzaffar appears to throw a handful of pistachios at Jackson, who jumped back.
Spencer’s testimony indicates that Jackson showed Mozzafar a handgun resting on his right hip. When Mozzafar walked towards Jackson, the accused backed up and drew his gun.
“The deceased continued towards Mr. Jackson. At that point I picked up the phone and called 911 immediately because there was a gun pointed,” Spencer said. “He continued towards Mr. Jackson. He said, “Please stay back, please stay back” before pulling out his gun.
The video shows the two standing about 12 feet apart before Jackson walks behind another shelf above objects towards the front door. With his gun still pointed at Mozzaffar, he exits the gas station. But Mozzafar follows him out of the building.
Additional surveillance video taken from outside the building shows the shooting. As Jackson leaves the store, he steps back to the right. Mozzaffar exits the building shortly after, facing Jackson the whole time.
The two continue to stare at each other, exchanging words, before Mozzaffar turns his body slightly.
Spencer testified that she overheard Mozzaffar say to Jackson, “I’ve got something for you,” before resting her left hand in the front seat of her vehicle. Jackson opens fire as he flees, shooting Mozzaffar and also shooting his vehicle. Spencer said he heard 12 gunshots.
Cherkeetha Love was returning home from picking up her son from a late shift at the McDonald’s fast food restaurant on the corner of North Ballenger Freeway and Hatherly Avenue when she said she heard multiple gunshots. Then she saw a man running west from the Sunoco gas station. He was holding a gun.
Love described driving her vehicle with her two sons to the gas station, where she noticed a vehicle with a shattered rear window. A former nurse, she wanted to see if she could be of any help.
“I opened his door and said, ‘Are you okay?'” she said. “He said, ‘I got shot.’ I said, ‘Where?’ He showed me where I guess where it hurt the most.
Love said she was wearing a dress at the time, so she removed the string from her dress to use as a tourniquet for the bleeding man. She said that while she was trying to communicate with the man, a woman from inside the store was yelling at her.
“(She was) like, ‘Don’t help him, don’t help him. He’s got a gun,’” Love said. “But I kept helping him. I said, ‘No one deserves to die.’
Love said she asked Mozzafar if he had a gun. She said he said no. She stayed with him until help arrived.
sergeant. Craig Winnie of the Michigan State Police was at MSP Flint Post in Flint Township finishing up paperwork when he received a call for a shooting at Ballenger Highway and Flushing Road.
Along with another soldier, Winnie said she responded to the scene and noticed a man walking towards the gas station from a sidewalk on Flushing Road. He had his hands raised above his head.
“I got out of the vehicle. I asked him if he was giving up, and he said, “Yes,” Winnie testified. “As we got closer, he still had his hands up, you could see a gun in his belt. So, I pulled out my gun and gave him instructions to go to the ground, and he s ‘is conform.
The soldier who was with Winnie handcuffed Jackson, and Flint Police Department officers took the gun. It was a Glock .26 with a bullet in the chamber.
Jackson had a license to carry a concealed firearm, according to Det. Trp. Keith Bieganski, member of the Flint Major Case Unit and lead detective on the case.
Bieganski testified that he interviewed Spencer, Love and Jackson the night of the shooting.
He also said no weapon was ever found inside Mozzafar’s vehicle.
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