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Reeves' DNA not found on cellphone in theater shooting case

Former Tampa Police captain Curtis Reeves, Jr., watches his defense attorney Richard Escobar, right, deliver his closing argument during his bond reduction hearing before Circuit Judge Pat Siracusa at the Robert D. Sumner Judicial Center in Dade City Friday. Reeves is suspected of fatally shooting Chad Oulson, 43, and wounding his wife, Nicole, 33. Deputies say Reeves shot Oulson during an argument over texting before a movie at the Cobb Grove 16 theater near Interstate 75 in Wesley Chapel.
Published Jun. 24, 2014

Tests did not find Curtis Reeves' DNA on a cellphone that belonged to the man he is accused of having shot and killed in a Wesley Chapel movie theater on Jan. 13.

Reeves' attorneys say Chad Oulson threw the phone at Reeves first. That claim could have been bolstered if Reeves' DNA was on the phone.

Evidence recently released in the case showed the phone belonging to Oulson, who was 43, had three people's DNA but not that of Reeves, a retired Tampa police captain charged with second-degree murder.

Reeves, 71, remains in the Pasco County jail without bail. A judge denied bail in March, a decision that was appealed to the 2nd District Court of Appeal.

Authorities said the shooting happened after Reeves became irritated with Oulson, who refused to stop texting his 2-year-old daughter's babysitter during the previews for a showing at Cobb Grove 16 Theater.

Reeves' attorney, Rick Escobar, has maintained that Reeves acted in self-defense after Oulson threw a phone at him. During the bail hearing, they showed an enhanced video in which they said a flash of a rectangular object is Oulson's phone being thrown in the dark theater. In an interview with sheriff's deputies after the shooting, Reeves said something hit him so hard it knocked his glasses off.

Escobar said Monday the "neutral" results of the test don't harm his case.

The next court hearing is set for July 9 in Dade City.


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