Defense calls taser expert in Vassey case

Defense calls taser expert in Vassey case
Judge says court is in recess until Thursday because of "legal issues." (Source: WECT)

BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WECT) - Just one witness testified during Day 8 of the bench trial of former Southport police sergeant Bryon Vassey.

Vassey is charged with voluntary manslaughter in the shooting that killed Keith Vidal in Boiling Spring Lakes two years ago.

The defense called Brian Childs, who works for Taser International, to the stand Thursday.

Childs, who had tested the taser used to subdue Keith Vidal, spent much of his time on the stand discussing how tasers work.

After audio from the body microphone of one of the officers at the scene of the shooting was played in court, Childs said Deputy Samantha Lewis Chavis pulled the trigger of the taser six times.

He also said one taser probe went into Vidal's cheek while the autopsy stated the second probe didn't penetrate his skin.

Childs explained a person's body can continue to move after a five-second "ride" after being hit by a taser.

Court went into recess for the day shortly before noon. The trial is expected to continue at 9:30 a.m. on Friday.

Scotland County Senior Resident Superior Court Judge Richard Brown said in court Wednesday they would go into recess until Thursday morning, so he could take the day to address those "legal issues."

Brown did not provide details or an explanation.

Brunswick County Assistant District Attorney Lee Bollinger declined to comment on the decision.

Tuesday was an important day in court as Brown threw out the defense's motion to dismiss Vassey's charge.

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