Frank Blaha, left, with Black Forest Fire Rehab, talks with an unidentified firefighter Thursday afternoon as he douses a fire that burned a structure just north of Shoup Road on Holmes Road. Photo by Mark Reis, The Gazette

A jury is weighing whether a fatal shooting outside a rap concert in Colorado Springs nearly two years ago was a spontaneous act of self-defense or a cold, calculated killing.

Jurors in the first-degree murder trial of Terry Lamaire Gaines deliberated about five hours Thursday without reaching a verdict. They will resume work Friday morning.

Gaines, 24, is accused of killing Michael Allen Davis, 27, by shooting him nine times on April 3, 2009, in the parking lot outside the Mr. Biggs Event Center at 5825 Mark Dabling Blvd. following a concert by California rapper E-40.

The two men knew each other. Gaines testified that Davis gave him a counterfeit $100 bill for some marijuana about three years before the shooting. He also claimed Davis made threatening "gunlike" gestures while at the concert.

Defense attorney Bill Griffin said the question jurors must answer is what happened during the seconds before Gaines began shooting Davis, who was seated in the front passenger seat of a parked Mercedes-Benz.

Gaines testified that he fired after Davis lurched as if to grab something. Police later found a loaded .22-caliber handgun inside the car.

“Those few seconds are crucial because that moment affected so many people’s lives,” Griffin said, alluding to the losses suffered by the Davis and Gaines families.

Griffin held up bag after bag of evidence collected by police from the crime scene: the bullets, a bloody sock, a bottle of Champagne. Each time he did so, Griffin asked, “Does this help prove what happened in that moment?”

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Chief Deputy District Attorney Diana K. May responded that the evidence, like the nine shell casings from Gaines’ .45-caliber Glock handgun, told plenty about what happened in that moment.

“Michael’s gone because of the defendant’s actions,” May said. “What happened in that moment is why we’re here.”

She repeatedly stressed the number of shots fired.

“Nine shots! This isn’t something that’s just random,” she said, holding the Glock. “It’s beyond reckless.”

She also questioned why Gaines never mentioned shooting in self-defense when he called his mother and sister while he was fleeing police. May suggested Gaines made up that story only after learning about the other gun from a police report.

For more on this trial, visit “The Sidebar” blog.

Stay with gazette.com for the verdict.


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