Texas man acquitted in deadly shooting of Midland Police Officer Nathan Heidelber in 2019 after checking on security alarm that had gone off at residence.
A West Texas man who opened gunfire on a police officer who was checking a security alarm at his house was acquitted of murder on Wednesday.
A jury delivered the not guilty verdict in David Wilson’s trial after deliberating for about an hour and a half. Wilson had faced life in prison if convicted of killing Midland Officer Nathan Heidelberg.
Wilson was charged with murdering Heidelberg in 2019. Wilson claimed self-defense because he did not know MPD had come to his home.
Wilson had contended he mistook Heidelberg as a burglar, and shot him in self-defense when he entered the home to check the alarm in the early morning hours of March 5, 2019 after the homeowner called 911 upon the house alarm going off.
MPD was called to the Wilson house after a home alarm system alerted them of a possible burglary CBS DFW reported.
‘Didn’t hear police officer announce himself’
During the trial, Wilson contended upon the alarm going off calling 911 immediately and only shooting ‘to protect his family.’
Prosecutors told the jury that the 5 year veteran police officer identified himself while he was outside Wilson’s front door, but Wilson had been hiding in a closet. A Texas Ranger and a police trainee that were on the scene told defense lawyers it was possible that the resident did not hear Heidelberg’s announcement.
Faulty home alarm aside, the home front door was unlocked.
Wilson had initially been charged with second-degree manslaughter, but a Midland County grand jury upgraded the charge to murder ABCNews reports.
The shooting episode has once again re-ignited debate over gun rights and the 2nd amendment with commentators on social media incredulous that the home resident, who shot dead a police officer avoiding jail time, and whether the jury would have arrived at the same ‘not guilty’ verdict had he not been a white man…
Midland is a mid-sized city in western Texas, about an hour’s drive from the New Mexico border.