Billy Abraham manslaughter trial begins
Accused of drunkenly running over pedestrian
July 22, 2013 update: Seats filled up quickly as spectators squeezed into the benches of an El Paso courtroom this morning for the intoxication manslaughter trial of El Paso businessman Billy Abraham.
It's taken three years to get to this point.
Abraham is accused of hitting and killing a man named James Grady while Abraham was driving.
Prosecutors say abraham was drunk at the time.
Coach Melvin Harris said," I saw the white truck [strike] the man as he was walking. i saw the man fly to the right hand side, then i saw the white truck continue forward."
He said Abraham didn't slow down and his brake lights never came on.
Abraham's defense attorney, Dick Deguerin, questioned the coach about whether or not Abraham sped off, or broke any other traffic laws after he hit the man.
Harris said no, only that Abraham never stopped.
Deguerin asked if the coach thought it was possible that Abraham never realized he'd hit someone and Harris said 'yes,' it was possible.
Eyewitness Juan Milton on the stand Monday said he saw Grady "walking up very close to the truck like he wanted to commit suicide. I noticed he was out of balance, like he was under the influence of drugs. What had to happen, happend."
Original July 19, 2013 story: Jury selection began Friday in the 384th District Court, for the intoxicated manslaughter trial of downtown property owner William "Billy" Abraham.
Abraham is accused of drunkenly running over 47-year-old homeless man, Jay Grady, in July 2010, and fleeing the scene.
A large jury pool, in excess of 100 potential jurors, necessitated moving jury selection to the County Courthouse's oversize Ceremonial Courtroom.
Abraham is the son of criminal defense attorney Joseph "Sib" Abraham. Ray Velarde is Billy Abraham's attorney of record, but the senior Abraham has been in the courtroom for several pretrial hearings.
Sib Abraham has said the area where the collision occurred was poorly lit, and that his son didn't realized he had hit Grady.
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