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Teen takes the stand in murder trial
RENSSELAER CO. -- The jury in the case of a Rensselaer County teen accused of shooting and killing her father will start deliberations Wednesday. Trinity Copeland took the stand in her own defense Tuesday and closing statements were given by both attorneys.
Copeland testified that she and her father were close when she was growing up. She said their relationship started to change in the spring of 2012 when she was put on punishment and when she said he started to drink more often and become belligerent.
Copeland testified that the night she shot her father, he was angry over money she stole from him using his debit card. She said her father told her he would kill them both if she didn't kill him. Copeland said in court that she was hysterical and feared for her life. She said she felt she had no choice but to shoot her dad.
The prosecutor pushed her on that asking why, once she had the gun in her hand, she didn't run out a nearby door or try to call for help. She told him she didn't think of those things with her state of mind at that time.
In closing arguments Tuesday the prosecution argued again, that Copeland had a choice and didn't have to kill her father.
"Did she go into the bedroom, shut the door and call 911? She didn't do that either," said Shane Hug, Rensselaer County Assistant District Attorney as he spoke to the jury.
Copeland's defense attorney said in his closing arguments that Copeland had no choice. He said she acted out of fear and shock, otherwise she wouldn't have shot her dad.
"The people have not overcome the notion that she had no choice, and that she was justified," said Michael Fiet, the defense attorney.