DETROIT (WJBK) - The trial continues for a former Michigan State trooper charged with murdering a Detroit teenager. On Wednesday, several witnesses took the stand to describe what they saw happen between Mark Bessner and 15-year-old Damon Grimes.
The police radio call played in open court, recording the exact moment Tasers were used on Grimes riding an ATV in a Detroit neighborhood near East Gratiot and Rossini. An electronic sound was heard on the dispatch call, allegedly the sound of a Taser deployed by former State Police Trooper Mark Bessner to end the chase, followed by the trooper's request to send EMS to the scene.
But 15-year-old Damon Grimes would not survive that crash, and now a jury of 15 people must decide whether or not Bessner is guilty of murder in the second degree. The state is making its case by calling an eye witness to the stand.
"He lost control and his hands started to make a back and forth motion," said Ariel Houser. "And so the ATV started to move as he lost control of it. And he hit, he smacked right into the side of the truck."
It was around 5 p.m. on August 25, 2017 when Houser sat in a parked van, chatting with a friend.
"He didn't move as soon as he hit the ground. Neck injuries are pretty serious, so I thought that he would've been paralyzed or dead," she said.
It's alleged Bessner fired a Taser from the passenger seat of a cruiser causing Grimes to lose control and crash. The prosecution called the police lieutenant who trained Bessner on the proper use of a Taser back in 2012 to the stand.
"We train them to try and deescalate it through verbal skills, positioning, to try to resolve it with the least amount of force necessary that way we try to eliminate injury to all involved parties," said Lt. Barry Schrader.
But Bessner's defense attorney argues that out in the field things change in the blink of an eye and that officers must react accordingly.
Prosecutor: "Those situations can rapidly change to become a deadly threat."
"Yes," Schrader said.
The prosecution will continue to call witnesses as the trial moves forward.