MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Both the prosecution and the defense rested their cases Friday in the fourth day of the murder trial for Kwasi Corbin, the 19-year-old charged with first-degree murder in the shooting death of Myneisha Johnson.
Closing arguments are set for Saturday at 9 a.m.
Corbin took the stand for more than an hour Friday. He told the jury that he did fire his gun that night.
But in a bombshell development, Corbin made a self-defense claim, attempting to paint a picture of a man in fear for his life.
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Corbin admitted he fired two shots the night Johnson died, but he didn’t intend to kill her.
Corbin said he pulled up to 2nd Street near Beale Street waiting for a light to change when he saw three people he recognized crossing the street.
“When I was hanging up the phone, when I looked up, [the three men’s] attention was already on me and they was just staring at me. They were walking across the street by the time they made it to the sidewalk, [one of them] pulled out a gun,” said Corbin.
The person referenced by Corbin is a man he called a former friend.
A 2014 affidavit states Corbin was shot over a dice game. The alleged shooter is the person Corbin claimed he saw that May 2016 night.
According to Corbin, he brought a gun to protect himself – a self-defense motive.
“I felt like I couldn’t go nowhere without a gun,” said Corbin.
Earlier Friday afternoon, a forensic consultant also testified the bullet that killed Johnson ricocheted off the ground.
Prosecutors did not buy that line of defense and brought up in its cross-examination of Corbin that he did have a target, referencing the jailhouse call.
“Guns don’t kill people, people with guns kill people,” said Corbin.
“And that’s what you did!” exclaimed Alanda Dwyer, Shelby County assistant district attorney.
“That wasn’t the intention,” Corbin retorted.
Judge Lee Coffee instructed jurors of the charges. The trial resumes Saturday morning for closing arguments.
Continue scrolling past the background info for updates on Twitter from the courtroom as both sides concluded their cases.
Background info on the case:
This trial was roughly three years in the making.
Kwasi Corbin, 19, is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Myneisha Johnson, along with assault for injuring two others. Police say he shot into a crowd of people at 2nd and Peabody on May 22, 2016.
Johnson was set to graduate the following weekend after she was killed. She had one child. Her son accepted her diploma for her at Booker T. Washington’s graduation ceremony.
Corbin is facing a slew of charges in connection with the shooting. They include First Degree Murder, multiple counts of Criminal Attempted First Degree Murder, among others.
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