CHARLOTTE, Tenn. (WTVF) — The trial of Steven Wiggins, the person accused of killing Dickson County Sgt. Daniel Baker, received underway Monday, with the state calling Baker’s widow as its first witness.
Wiggins is accused of killing Sgt. Daniel Baker throughout a visitors cease again in 2018. Wiggins is charged with premeditated first-degree homicide after authorities say he shot Baker 4 occasions after the sergeant stopped the car, which had been reported stolen.
Earlier than the trial started, a separate listening to was held to debate whether or not they should maintain the trial below COVID protocols. The protection requested for a continuance as a result of an knowledgeable witness will not be prepared to journey to Tennessee as a result of Delta variant and the excessive stage of instances in Dickson County.
Nevertheless, the state stated that was simply one other delay and that precautions might be taken if the witness is worried.
Choose David Wolfe denied the movement to proceed and requested the witness to look through Zoom.
District Lawyer Common Ray Crouch is looking for the demise penalty for Wiggins. Throughout opening statements, Crouch detailed the timeline of the case, main as much as Baker’s killing.
Crouch stated Wiggins shot Baker from the passenger aspect, at which level Baker radioed “pictures fired, officer down.” Crouch stated Baker collapsed and Wiggins shot and killed Baker at shut vary.
From there, Wiggins allegedly put Baker’s physique in his patrol automobile and drove away from the scene. Crouch stated Wiggins even answered a number of calls from dispatch.
Crouch stated Wiggins then drove to the Bear Creek Valley space, by fields and to a distant space, the place he set hearth to Baker’s physique and the patrol automobile.
After Wiggins was recognized because the suspect, one of many largest manhunts within the State of Tennessee ensued. Wiggins remained at giant for 2 days. Crouch stated he was discovered with what was decided to be the homicide weapon, together with Baker’s backup weapon and knife.
Crouch stated throughout an interview, Wiggins was requested why he shot Baker within the head at shut vary within the head. He stated Wiggins responded: “It’s like a canine, you don’t let it endure.”
In opening statements, Wiggins’ legal professional made an argument that whereas he killed the deputy, it wasn’t premeditated. In the meantime, the state stated Wiggins advised the TBI ‘it’s like a canine, you don’t let it endure.’
— Alexandra Koehn (@NC5_AKoehn) August 2, 2021
Erika Castro Miles, a girl who was with Wiggins, can also be charged and will probably be tried later.
NewsChannel5’s Alexandra Koehn will probably be following the trial from the courtroom. NewsChannel 5 will even stream the trial on-line, on Fb and on Roku and Apple TV.