Officials in Columbus and Dayton Dayton are aiming to capitalize on backlash against a religious-objections law in neighboring Indiana that critics say could permit discrimination against gays and lesbians.
Jury Finds Lawrence Guilty of Killing Officer
A federal jury Tuesday found 30-year-old Daryl Lawrence guilty in the shooting death of a Columbus police officer. Officer Bryan Hurst died while exchanging gunfire with Lawrence at a Fifth Third Bank on East Broad Street on January 6th, 2005. Hurst was working special duty in the bank lobby.
Prosecutors said Lawrence entered the bank lobby with a .40 calibre semi-automatic weapon cocked and ready to fire. U-S Assistant Attorney David DeVillers said Lawrence saw Hurst, lunged over the teller counter and started shooting at Hurst at point blank range. Hurst returned fire before he collapsed, and a bullet struck Lawrence in the hand. He left blood at the scene, and DNA led to his arrest.
The defense admitted that Lawrence shot Hurst and was shot by Hurst, but attorney Kort Gatterdam said questioned whether Officer Hurst was shot at point blank range and said his client did not intend to place any lives in jeopardy.
Federal jurors in Columbus will determine if Lawrence will receive the death penalty.