LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Kenneth Brown has been behind bars for nearly a year and a half and Tuesday his murder trial got underway. Brown is accused of murdering a well known Louisville rapper and dancer known as 'Sugar Shizz'.
The defense made it clear from the beginning.
"On August 18, 2010 Kenneth Brown shot LaShawn Talbert," said defense attorney Chastity Beyl. "He did it to save his life. He shot LaShawn Talbert because LaShawn Talbert had a gun on him."
Talbert was known simply as 'Sugar Shizz' in the club scene.
Brown is accused of shooting Talbert during a 2010 drug deal gone bad in Okolona. Talbert died three days after being shot.
"Kenneth Brown got ripped off ladies and gentleman," said assistant commonwealth's attorney Jessica Moore. "He chased after a car down a residential street shooting at it to get his drugs back because he was mad."
Talbert's mother, Vickie Talbert took the stand Tuesday, breaking down the moment she testified.
Several witnesses who were nearby and heard the shooting testified.
"I heard shooting but, I thought it was fireworks and I looked outside and I seen a car pulling out," said one witness.
"I was sitting in my living room watching TV and heard several gun shots," said another witness.
It's not often that the WAVE 3 newsroom gets letters from people behind bars. Back in June of last year, Brown wrote WAVE 3 a handwritten letter. In the letter, Brown admitted to killing Talbert. He says Talbert and others went to buy marijuana off of Brown, when part of the group tried to rob Brown, causing him to fear for his life.
He writes, "One has the right to use deadly force upon another to protect himself" and "It's still robbery if you rob a drug dealer for drugs".
It's now up the jury if Brown used his gun in self defense or for murder.
Another man named David Curd pleaded guilty to manslaughter in July of 2011 for Talbert's death.
Brown is on trial for murder, wanton endangerment, and tampering with physical evidence. The trial will resume Wednesday at 10:30 a.m.
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