Wednesday, May 14, 2014
WASHINGTON, Pa. (AP) — A jury has found an Army veteran not guilty in the fatal shooting of another motorist in a western Pennsylvania parking lot after a road-rage dispute.
Washington County prosecutors contended 32-year-old Brandon Thomas got out of his vehicle and purposely shot 55-year-old Vaughn Simonelli, of Chartiers Township, on Oct. 18, 2012.
The defense said Thomas suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder and fired in self-defense only after he was blocked in his parking space by Simonelli's vehicle.
A jury on Wednesday found Thomas not guilty of murder and manslaughter counts. They did convict him on drug charges.
Some witnesses testified that Thomas, of Upper St. Clair, got out of his vehicle and shot Simonelli, while others supported Thomas' version that he shot from inside the vehicle as Simonelli threw a punch.