The video of former security guard Gregory Livingston fatally shooting Alvin Motley Jr. at a Kroger gas station was shown in court for the first time on Tuesday at a probable cause hearing.
Judge Louis Montesi had previously blocked the release of any video. He allowed the local news pool to record footage shown in court but upheld the defense’s request that copies of videos not be released.
The videos showed that Livingston made the initial approach to the vehicle in which Motley was a passenger. Witnesses said Motley had complied with Livingston’s order to turn the music down before the argument escalated, WREG reports. Motley, who was nearly blind, is seen getting in and out of the car a few times during the dispute.
The Commercial Appeal reports that the footage also showed Motley’s final moments before the shooting. Motley is seen in the videos slowly walking toward Livingston, a beer can in his left hand and a lit cigarette in his right hand. Memphis police homicide detective Sgt. LaTanya West testified that Motley appeared to be raising his right hand, perhaps taking a drag from his cigarette, when he got shot. The bullet traveled through his wrist and into his chest, the Appeal notes.
From the Commercial Appeal:
In between heated remarks to one another, Livingston returned to the area near the cashier’s kiosk at the gas station, according to surveillance footage.
A witness to the shooting incident, Shedrick Weary, said that he was attempting to pay at the register when Livingston told Weary, “I’ve shot and killed four people before.”
“I told him, ‘I don’t even want to hear that,’” Weary told the court Tuesday. A short time later, Weary heard the shot.
Livingston, who was a former police officer, made a 911 call saying he feared for his life. “I just shot him. He was approaching me,” he said according to WREG. Livingston had his personal handgun, three magazines, two knives and a baton at the time of his arrest. He did not have an armed security guard license.
At the end of the preliminary hearing, which determines if there is enough evidence to go to trial, the judge said he saw no justification for the shooting and sent the case to a grand jury. The grand jury will decide whether to indict on the current charges or different ones, WREG notes.
“We are horrified and heartbroken by the shooting death of our customer, Alvin Motley, Jr. Our Memphis Kroger family is reeling from multiple senseless acts of violence this summer. We stand with the Motley family in their call for justice,” Kroger said in a statement on Tuesday following the hearing. Kroger announced last month that it was cutting ties with the security company Allied Universal in Memphis that employed Livingston.
Robert DiCello, an attorney for the family, spoke about the former security guard to the press. “He keeps on trying to align himself with police. Not a single good police officer would agree with shooting a man for arguing with him,” DiCello said.