Defendant testifies in murder case
MIAMI (WSVN) -- A man accused of killing his ex wife's new husband took the stand in his own defense.
Cristobal Palacios, the man who fired six fatal shots took the stand Wednesday and said he regrets what happened, but at the time it was his life or Paul Winter's. "I thought he was going to kill me," said Palacios.
A jury is weighing whether Winter died in cold-blooded murder or whether his wife's ex-husband shot him in self-defense. "Paul Winter is the victim. He's the person who you couldn't hear from today because he's dead, " said prosecutor Joseph Mansfield, "and he's dead because of this man. It was cold blood, it wasn't justified or reasonable."
Palacios explained what happened on Oct. 17, 2008, the night the British-born graphic designer died. "I see him reach for a gun. I pull my gun out, start shooting because I want to stop him," said Palacios.
He then said he often carried a weapon to walk his dogs because thieves recently stole his mail and security cameras from his two homes. He said he feared someone wanted to kill him.
The night of the murder, he said he heard a noise outside his house. He then armed himself because he was not expecting Winter, his ex-wife Jennifer or the twins and said he walked outside and asked, 'What's going on?'
Defense attorney Michael Walsh said, "On that day, Cristobal Palacios exercised his basic human right: the right to defend himself from harm."
In prior testimony, Palacios' ex-wife Jennifer said he threatened to kill her husband. Palacios, however, said Winter threatened to kill him.
Palacios is hoping the jury hears his self-defense clam. "Paul Winter is the architect of all this chaos. If he hadn't got out of the car, he wouldn't be dead today," said Walsh.
The case will resume Thursday, at 10 a.m., to deliberate Palacios' fate.
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