Cook County jurors Friday watched a series of videos depicting the moments before and after Chicago Police Cmdr. Paul Bauer’s fatal shooting.
Legghette’s defense attorney objected as one video of a police officer’s body-worn camera played in court, showing alleged gunman Shomari Legghette being taken in custody after the Feb. 13, 2018 shooting.
The tape was paused and Judge Erica Reddick cleared the jury from her courtroom, telling prosecutors to limit the amount of the body-camera footage shown during Legghette’s murder trial.
Defense attorney Scott Kamin asked for a mistrial, maintaining jurors couldn’t be expected to disregard comments they heard officers make on the video, nor images of Legghette in handcuffs near a downtown stairwell where the shooting took place.
Reddick ruled against the motion. “In this case, I’ll say the amount of material [jurors] viewed was somewhat limited,” she said.
Assistant State’s Attorney John Maher said the footage was presented to show jurors that Legghette wasn’t injured while in police custody. Officer Anja Bouch, whose body-worn camera the footage came from, also testified that Legghette had been “treated fairly” by police.
When the jury returned to the courtroom, the footage was presented without audio and limited to footage of police officers searching Legghette at the scene near the Thompson Center and again at Area Central headquarters.
Jurors Friday also watched taxi cab footage footage and heard testimony from cabbie Evin Kulic, who saw 53-year-old Bauer chase Legghette across Clark Street and toward the stairwell. Kulic said he saw Bauer and Legghette tussle at the top of the stairwell before falling down the steps out of view. He also said he heard gunshots after pulling his cab over to watch. He later used his cellphone to shoot video of Legghette being brought up the stairs and searched by officers.
The footage and audio, mounted on Kulic’s cab, showed two figures run across the street in front of the taxi. Then a series of seven gunshots could be heard.
Kulic testified he did not see or hear any officers fire their weapons.
In a letter to ABC-7 reporters, Legghette, 46, claimed that Bauer was struck by “friendly fire” from fellow officers.
Illinois State Police firearms examiner Jennifer Sher testified Friday that a bullet that struck Bauer and shell casings found at the scene were fired from the 9-mm Glock semiautomatic pistol that was later recovered from Leghette.
Legghette’s trial is expected to continue Monday.