Video shows Arizona speed cam killingPosted: Updated:
PHOENIX (AP) -- The operator of a speed-camera van was shuffling through paperwork when he was knocked to the side by the power of multiple gunshots fired from outside the vehicle, according to video obtained Wednesday by The Associated Press.
The minute-long video, taken from the interior of the van, shows Doug Georgianni, 51, sitting in the front seat with an overhead light on as he went through his paperwork on April 19, 2009. Georgianni is then shot and can be heard mumbling shortly after.
A second video, also provided by Phoenix police, shows a Chevy Suburban slowly pull up behind the van and then alongside it. The shooter is not shown.
Thomas Patrick Destories, 69, was arrested the day after the killing. He has pleaded not guilty to charges of first-degree murder, drive-by shooting and firing a gun at a structure in the killing. His lawyer, Vanessa Smith, did not return a call for comment.
"I'm sorry. I was going to turn myself in," Destories told police at the time, according to court records. "I didn't mean for anyone to get hurt. I saw it (the shooting) on the news. The gun is in the saddlebag."
His lawyer said in court documents that Destories has a history of mental illness dating back to 1970, that their conversations have been disjointed and that he has exhibited paranoia. He recently was found competent to stand trial and remains jailed.
In finding Destories competent, Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Michael Kemp ruled that Destories understands the court proceedings and can assist in his own defense.
Prosecutors are not seeking the death penalty because they weren't able to find aggravating factors to do so, prosecutor Vince Imbordino said last week. Such factors would include a crime being committed in an especially heinous, cruel or depraved manner.
Destories faces 25 years to life in prison if convicted on the first-degree murder charge, but the jury could find him guilty of a lesser charge of second-degree murder.
Authorities haven't released a motive in Georgianni's killing but said Destories and Georgianni had never met. Many assume the killing was the most extreme backlash against the state's speed-enforcement program, which began in September 2008.
Arizonans have used sticky notes, Silly String and even a pickax to sabotage the cameras since they began snapping the photos of speeders. A citizens group is seeking to get a measure on the November ballot to ban the cameras.
Mobile units that are part of Arizona's statewide speed-enforcement program are no longer staffed with people, but are operated remotely.
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