Trial of man accused of fatally stabbing Barksdale airman under - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Trial of man accused of fatally stabbing Barksdale airman under way

Benjamin Shaw, charged with Second Degree Murder in the death of a Barksdale airman, leaves the Bossier Parish Courthouse in Benton on April 11, 2017. (Source: Nick Lawton, KSLA) Benjamin Shaw, charged with Second Degree Murder in the death of a Barksdale airman, leaves the Bossier Parish Courthouse in Benton on April 11, 2017. (Source: Nick Lawton, KSLA)
Benjamin Shaw, 21 (Source: Bossier City Police Department) Benjamin Shaw, 21 (Source: Bossier City Police Department)
Technical Sergeant Zechariah Casagranda. (Courtesy: Facebook) Technical Sergeant Zechariah Casagranda. (Courtesy: Facebook)
BENTON, LA (KSLA) -

The trial of a man accused of fatally stabbing a Barksdale airman is under way Bossier Parish. 

Benjamin Shaw is charged with second-degree murder of 34-year-old Tech. Sgt. Zechariah Casagranda in January 2016. 

Bossier City Police say Shaw, 21, stabbed Casagranda in a fight outside a Bossier City nightclub.

On Friday morning, the trial began with opening statements in which Shaw's attorney told the jury that the deadly stabbing was done in self-defense, telling the jury, "He was attacked in the dark, by a stranger...and he feared for his life."

Prosecutors called Airman Alex Cherrier to the stand who recorded a brief video of the fight that only showed people's backs. Under cross-examination, Baez tried to paint Cherrier as unreliable and just trying to cover for fellow airmen and admitted saying to police, "This is how it always ends when we go to a bar." 

Jury selection wrapped up Thursday morning after three days of interviews with 135 prospective jurors. 

Judge Michael Craig has also sequestered four witnesses for the first day of the trial, including Casagranda's wife, Brandi Casagranda, and the lead BCPD detective in the case, Michael Hardesty.

Shaw is represented by attorney Jose Baez, who is well-known for his defense of Casey Anthony.

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