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Slow-motion video of shooting will be shown at Drejka parking lot shooting trial

Michael Drejka attends a pretrial hearing on Friday at the Pinellas County Criminal Justice Center. He awaits trial on a charge of manslaughter, accused of fatally shooting a man in 2018 in a dispute over a handicapped parking space. [DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD | Times]
Published Aug. 9

LARGO — Prosecutors in the manslaughter case of parking lot shooter Michael Drejka will be able to use a slow-motion version of the surveillance video that captured the 2018 death of Markeis McGlockton, a judge ruled Friday.

However, post-shooting video taken from inside the store that showed an emotional moment in which McGlockton, 28, collapses in front of his 5-year-old son will not be shown to jurors.

The rulings were made as all parties work out the remaining issues to be settled before the trial's scheduled start of Aug. 19. There will likely be one more hearing Tuesday regarding a dispute over a use-of-force expert the defense recently listed as a witness.

RELATED STORY: State prevails on several fronts as trial of Clearwater parking lot shooter looms

Friday's rulings went largely in the state's favor. The slow-motion clip is about 11 seconds and, as argued by prosecutor Fred Schaub, shows Drejka motioning to McGlockton to move. The video shows McGlockton start to retreat when Drejka pulls the trigger, the prosecutor said.

Defense attorney John Trevena argued that the clip should be excluded because the 49-year-old Drejka's self-defense claim is based in part on his perception of events, and the human brain processes events in real time.

Pinellas-Pasco Circuit Judge Joseph Bulone sided with prosecutors in that the slow motion would help jurors evaluate Drejka's actions.

RELATED STORY: Five things to know on the one-year anniversary of the Clearwater parking lot shooting

The ruling on the footage from inside the store came out of a compromise between both sides.

While the defense argued the video would be prejudicial to Drejka, prosecutors said they needed it to eradicate any doubts that McGlockton was armed.

They ultimately backed down after the defense agreed to say during trial that McGlockton had no weapons on him.

Contact Kathryn Varn at kvarn@tampabay.com or (727) 893-8913. Follow @kathrynvarn.

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