Both sides are fighting over who will decide the fate of a retired police captain charged with murdering a finance manager. Curtis Reeves, 79, shot and killed Chad Oulson, 43, during a motive theater argument in 2014. You can watch in the player above.
Jury selection is underway in Florida for retired police captain #CurtisReeves, who is on trial for the alleged second-degree murder of U.S. Navy veteran Chad Oulson inside a movie theater in 2014. Reeves claimed he fatally shot Oulson in self-defense. @LawCrimeNetwork pic.twitter.com/8qhdUt5pYx
— Law&Crime Network (@LawCrimeNetwork) February 7, 2022
Reeves was sitting behind Oulson in a movie theater on Jan. 13, 2014, in Pasco County, Florida, and complained about the man texting. Oulson, a U.S. Navy veteran and the father of a 2-year-old girl, told Reeves he was communicating with his daughter’s babysitter during previews for the film Lone Survivor. Reeves, a retired captain for the Tampa Police Department, asked for a manager to intervene. He returned to the theater and argued with Oulson. Oulson allegedly threw popcorn at him, and the retired police captain shot and killed him. This round also grazed the hand of Chad’s widow Nicole Oulson.
Reeves maintained self-defense, that Oulson was coming over the seats to punch him, though his attorneys unsuccessfully pushed for the state’s “Stand Your Ground” law to apply.
“Did you want to shoot him?” Reeves’ attorney asked in a 2017 hearing.
“So why did you shoot?” the attorney said.
“Well, at that point it was his life or mine,” Reeves said.
When asked if he felt Oulson was going to hurt him, Reeves affirmed, fighting back tears, “No question.”
Nicole Oulson testified that Reeves was the instigator of this fatal confrontation. For example, she said Reeves kept needling Oulson after returning from trying to get a manager, and he said something to the effect of, “I see that you put the phone away now that I went to get management.”
“It was not a polite, ‘Oh, thank you for putting it away,'” Oulson said. “It was to keep nagging at Chad . . . to keep the argument going.”
Ronn Blitzer contributed to this report.
[Booking photo via Pasco County Jail]
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