Accused Del City Police Captain Takes The Stand In Manslaughter Trial

Friday, November 22nd 2013, 8:47 pm
By: News 9

Randy Harrison took the stand in his defense this afternoon, claiming he was forced to shoot Dane Scott Jr. after a scuffle.

The Del City police officer is charged with first-degree manslaughter in the March 2012 death of 18-year-old Scott. He has pleaded not guilty.

"I was forced to shoot him. Regrettably, it was the decision made by Dane Scott," Harrison said before Oklahoma County District Attorney strenuously objected.

Harrison said he shot Scott in the back to protect himself and protect the community after a high-speed chase that ended in car crashes and a scuffle.

"He had just tried to shoot me in the face and kill me," Harrison testified.

Scott was unarmed when Harrison shot him, although a .32-caliber pistol was recovered at the scene.

Del City resident Cody Shannon, 19, testified that he went to buy some marijuana from Scott and was in his car prior to the shooting. Shannon said he became concerned when Scott told him he had a gun and refused to go to jail.

11/19/2013 Related Story: Testimony Begins Tuesday In Manslaughter Trial Of Del City Police Capt.

"I just wanted out of the car. I thought we were going to die," Shannon said, later explaining that he never saw any indication that Scott intended to surrender to police.

Testimony Friday afternoon largely involved the circumstances under which Harrison started a one-man narcotics unit. Prosecutors allege Harrison was out to get Scott and was unjustified in shooting him.

Harrison testified that drug-dealing was "rampant" but the department hadn't had a dedicated narcotics officer in 10 years.

"Nobody else (in the department) was doing it. Nobody else wanted to do it," he said.

Harrison had encountered Scott several times before the shooting and suspected him of selling marijuana. A set of digital scales, commonly used for weighing marijuana, was recovered from Scott's car.

Deputy Chief John Smith testified that an employment evaluation showed Harrison to be a highly competent officer, but admitted that the shooting changed his opinion.

Earlier in the day, a state forensic pathologist testified that the bullet that killed Scott pierced his ribs, vertebrae, lung and stomach before hitting his aorta and ultimately killing him.

"I think an un-survivable injury is a good description of it," said Dr. Inas Yacoub, when asked about the severity of the bullet wound.

The bullet fragmented and stopped in his body. A person who was shot in such a matter likely wouldn't die immediately, but probably couldn't stand, Yacoub testified.

11/20/2013 Related Story: Witness: Teen Tried To Surrender Before Being Shot By Del City Police Captain

Scott also had a Taser barb embedded in his skin.

Harrison's attorney Doug Friesen questioned Yacoub about abrasions on Scott's hands and knees, and what direction the bullet entered his body. He also questioned whether Scott's post-mortem drug test included marijuana.

Testimony is expected to conclude Monday in the trial in District Judge Donald Deason's courtroom.