Jurors watch confession video in trial of Johnnie Hardman - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Jurors watch confession video in trial of Johnnie Hardman

Johnnie Hardman (Source: KPLC) Johnnie Hardman (Source: KPLC)

It was a long and tedious three hour video statement, most of which involved denial after denial by Johnnie Hardman. But finally, in the end, Hardman admits he shot through the window of Joshua Touchet's car and suggested he did it because Touchet refused to roll down the window as Hardman tried to rob him.  Hardman said Touchet was stubborn and indicated he was afraid Touchet might hurt him.  "I wasn't trying to kill him," said Hardman after finally admitting he shot Touchet at the Twelve Palms RV Park, July 22, 2017.

Hardman shot Touchet in the shoulder, but according to testimony from Coroner Dr. Terry Welke, the bullet traveled through his body and caused his death by injuring his heart and liver.

During Hardman's video statement the police warned him if he didn't give up where the gun was hidden and a child found it and was killed--he'd face more charges for that.

A firearms expert with the La. State Police Crime Lab testified a bullet casing at the scene matched the gun later recovered in some bushes at a residence on Mill Street.

Earlier, jurors heard from a man who was robbed  just before Touchet was shot .

Witness Clinton Curtice told how there were three men and that one approached him with a handgun and demanded money.  Curtice identified Johnnie Hardman as the man who pointed a gun at him and demanded money.

Curtice testified he later saw the man approach Touchet's vehicle and tap on the window. He heard a shot and did not know if Touchet had been wounded.

While Curtice was under cross-examination by defense attorney Mike McHale, McHale said he wasn't trying to "trip him up." 

A member of the audience said out loud, "Yes you are."

Judge Clayton Davis indicated he would not tolerate such outbursts. Based on that McHale asked for a mistrial which was denied.

Jurors also saw more police body cam interview which included a woman approaching the homicide scene crying and begging police, "Please tell me he's okay!"

Touchet was pronounced dead at the hospital. 

KPLC's Theresa Schmidt is in the courtroom. To follow the case more closely watch her Twitter feed.

Copyright 2018 KPLC. All rights reserved.

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