GRAND RAPIDS, Mich (WOOD) - - The jury in the case against the only man sent to trial for thebeating death of Jonathan "Jono" Krystiniak has asked the judge todefine aiding and abetting.
Jurors also asked for several hundred pages of transcripts fromwitnesses testimony, medical records and other evidence, anindication that deliberations may take some time.
The legal term aiding and abetting is key to the prosecutionscase against Eric Freeman.
He's charged with kicking Krystiniak in the head after anotherman's punch knocked him to the ground on the sidewalk near theformer Margarita Grill near Van Andel arena in January of 2008.
Krystiniak, home on holiday break from college, died over a weeklater from his injuries.
The aiding and abetting element would tie Freeman to the crime,even though his kick may not have killed Krystiniak.
"Anyone intentionally assists someone else in committing a crimeis as guilty as the person who directly commits it, and can beconvicted of the crime as an aider and abettor," Judge ChristopherYates told jurors, quoting from the law.
The question the jury has to decide is did the prosecution proveEric Freeman did something to directly assist with the crime.
"Even if Mr. Freeman knew that the alleged crime was beingplanned, or was being committed, the mere fact that he present whenit was committed is not enough to prove that he assisted incommitting it." Yates told jurors.
Freeman's attorney objected to the judge's explanations.
"The danger in that substitution is that they're looking to seehow the court views this case. In doing that, you're doing theirjob for them," said Damian Nunzio.
Stay with Woodtv.com for the latest on jury deliberations.
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