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Testimony begins in trial for man accused of killing Iowa State Trooper

Published: May. 10, 2022 at 11:45 AM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - Witness testimony has begun in the trial for the man accused of shooting and killing an Iowa State Trooper.

Michael Lang is charged with first degree murder in the death of Sergeant Jim Smith in Grundy Center last year.

Sergeant Smith was shot and killed in the line of duty. Police say Lang led officers on a vehicle chase before barricading himself in his house.

When Sergeant Smith and other officers entered his home, investigators say Lang shot and killed Smith.

The court moved the trial to Hamilton County due to pre-trial publicity, and Sergeant Smith’s profession.

Lang’s attorneys indicated they will argue he was legally justified in shooting Sergeant Smith.

They say it’s questionable whether Sergeant Smith was justified in entering Lang’s home, acknowledging Iowa’s stand your ground law.

But prosecutors say that’s not for the jury to decide if officers needed a warrant or not. They say officers were justified because Lang committed an offense in a police officer’s presence.

WATCH OPENING STATEMENTS BELOW:

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