CHARLOTTE, Tenn. (WTVF) — The proceedings of Steven Wiggins, the antheral accused of sidesplitting Dickson County Sgt. Daniel Baker, got underway Monday, with the authorities calling Baker's widow arsenic its archetypal witness.
Wiggins is accused of sidesplitting Sgt. Daniel Baker during a postulation halt backmost successful 2018. Wiggins is charged with premeditated first-degree execution aft authorities accidental helium changeable Baker 4 times aft the sergeant stopped the vehicle, which had been reported stolen.
Before the proceedings began, a abstracted proceeding was held to sermon whether they request to clasp the proceedings nether COVID protocols. The defence asked for a continuance due to the fact that an adept witnesser is not consenting to question to Tennessee owed to the Delta variant and the precocious level of cases successful Dickson County.
However, the authorities said that was conscionable different hold and that precautions could beryllium taken if the witnesser is concerned.
Judge David Wolfe denied the question to proceed and requested the witnesser to look via Zoom.
District Attorney General Ray Crouch is seeking the decease punishment for Wiggins. During opening statements, Crouch elaborate the timeline of the case, starring up to Baker's killing.
Crouch said Wiggins changeable Baker from the rider side, astatine which constituent Baker radioed "shots fired, serviceman down." Crouch said Baker collapsed and Wiggins changeable and killed Baker astatine adjacent range.
From there, Wiggins allegedly enactment Baker's assemblage successful his patrol car and drove distant from the scene. Crouch said Wiggins adjacent answered aggregate calls from dispatch.
Crouch said Wiggins past drove to the Bear Creek Valley area, done fields and to a distant area, wherever helium acceptable occurrence to Baker's assemblage and the patrol car.
After Wiggins was identified arsenic the suspect, 1 of the largest manhunts successful the State of Tennessee ensued. Wiggins remained astatine ample for 2 days. Crouch said helium was recovered with what was determined to beryllium the execution weapon, on with Baker’s backup limb and knife.
Crouch said during an interview, Wiggins was asked wherefore helium changeable Baker successful the caput astatine adjacent scope successful the head. He said Wiggins responded: "It’s similar a dog, you don’t fto it suffer."
In opening statements, Wiggins’ lawyer made an statement that portion helium killed the deputy, it wasn’t premeditated. Meanwhile, the authorities said Wiggins told the TBI ‘it’s similar a dog, you don’t fto it suffer.’— Alexandra Koehn (@NC5_AKoehn) August 2, 2021
Erika Castro Miles, a pistillate who was with Wiggins, is besides charged and volition beryllium tried later.