Cranston on trial | The Weekly Source

An earlier version of this story appeared Nov. 4 on

Jhe trial of Ian Cranston began Nov. 2 with attorneys selecting a 12-person jury to decide if Cranston was justified in the shooting of Barry Washington on Sept. 19, 2021, in downtown Bend. The shooting made national news and sparked outrage over charges of manslaughter rather than murder, with Cranston being released from jail the same afternoon as the shooting and perceived racial bias in the shooting and in the initial charges. Cranston is white and Washington is black.

  • jack harvel
  • Prosecutor Brooks McClain shows off the gun used by Ian Cranston to fatally shoot Barry Washington in downtown Bend in September 2021.

During jury selection, the defense screened out potential jurors who had a negative opinion of Cranston based on unfavorable media coverage, those who felt negative toward carrying concealed firearms, and those who believed the presence of a white shooter and a black victim could influence their feelings to a degree that could impact their decision. The prosecution asked potential jurors how alcohol affects behavior, whether someone who is drunk has the same protection under the law, whether they own guns and how they use them and how they jurors decide if someone is lying.

The next day, the lawyers and the judge met for a final motion, where the judge ruled on what evidence could be presented and what could not. Judge Beth Bagley ruled that data extracted from Washington’s cellphone did not fall within the scope of the warrant – an attempt to determine whether Cranston and Washington had ever rubbed shoulders before the night of September 19. Bagley also sided with the defense in disallowing a comparison to other downtown incidents compiled by the Bend Police Department and ruled that Washington could not be called a “victim” before arguments by fencing.

During the opening arguments, prosecutor Michael Swart argued that Cranston’s pride was bruised when Washington punched him in the face twice after he approached his fiancée Allison Butler. Washington had approached Butler at a bar to flirt, telling Butler she was beautiful, according to court documents, but cordially left after being told Butler was engaged. It’s unclear whether Washington recognized Butler when he approached her outside again, but Cranston allegedly told him to ‘move on’ and ‘she’s taken’ before an argument escalated into profanity and then violence. physical.

“After Barry Washington punched Ian Cranston twice in the face, Ian Cranston instantly pulled out his holstered handgun and took it to his side, then he waited 30 seconds, half a minute .Thirty long seconds of getting revenge, looking for an opportunity to sate his pride, looking for an opportunity to get revenge on Barry Washington and prove his manhood to his fiancée,” Swart, the prosecutor, said.

Swart said Cranston’s actions were out of proportion and there was no evidence Washington was going to attack him a second time. The defense argued that Cranston had no way to defend against Washington, who was 6 inches taller than Cranston and 40 pounds heavier. The defense also alleges that Cranston only fired after Washington shoved Butler and turned on Cranston with a raised fist.

“Ian Cranston never wanted to be in the situation he was put in that night. When Mr Cranston left his home he had no idea that before the night was over he would be attacked suddenly without warning by a man much stronger and more powerful than him,” said Kevin Sali, Cranston’s attorney.

The first four witnesses called in the case were officers from the Bend Police Department who responded to the call or performed detective work on the case. Officers reported entering a chaotic scene and finding Washington lying unconscious in a small pool of blood with an entry wound on his lower left abdomen and no exit wound. Initial reports suggested it could have been a self-inflected injury, but officers were later advised there was a shooter.

Prosecutor Michael Swart questions Allison Butler during the trial of Ian Cranston in the fatal shooting of 
Barry Washington.  -JACK HARVEL

  • jack harvel
  • Prosecutor Michael Swart questions Allison Butler during Ian Cranston’s trial in the shooting death of Barry Washington.

Body camera footage shows police assisting Washington, bandaging his wound and checking on others. Washington occasionally briefly regained consciousness. Police were tipped off that Cranston was the shooter by an employee of the Capitol, the bar outside of which the shooting took place. At the time, Cranston was helping an officer treat Washington’s wounds. Cranston applied pressure to Washington’s wounds 20 seconds after shooting him, but between that time and the arrival of police, the Capitol bouncer had begun to assist Washington, and Cranston was standing nearby.

Several officers said they were surprised to learn that the shooter had stayed and administered aid to Washington and described Cranston as cordial and docile. A Capitol doorman, however, viewed Cranston, Butler, and their friend Tyler Smith as seemingly unaffected by the shooting.

“He didn’t seem to have that much remorse, if that makes sense,” said Jarrett Yount, who was checking IDs at the Capitol. “None of them in the group were calling on the phone or anything. The other two friends were just standing against the wall and had this kind of smirk on their face.”

The last witness called on Friday was Cranston’s fiancée, Allison Butler. Just before Washington was shot, Butler began filming Washington saying, “Say hello.” Washington shoved the phone away from him, which Butler said hit her in the face. The footage is one of four video clips used in the case. Prosecutors say it was a deliberate provocation while the defense says it was meant to deter Washington from hitting someone else.

Prosecutors have tried to point out inconsistencies in Butler’s story as told on the stand, before the grand jury, in police interviews and in his cellphone footage, pointing to the grand jury testimony where Butler said Cranston used profanity and that she said Washington punched her in the cell. phone video, but said he pushed her during the grand jury indictment. The defense argued that when Washington pushed Butler’s phone, he punched her in the face and could reasonably be called a punch. Defense attorneys also said Butler, who denies the shooting was meant to provoke, would not intentionally incite someone who had just committed violence.

Bagley chastised both the prosecution and defense during Butler’s questioning, prompting him to dismiss the jury. Sali strongly objected to a line of questioning that he said violated a court order banning character evidence on a subpoena Butler gave to the grand jury. Bagley told Sali to keep his objections brief and told Swart to wrap up his questions.

“Mr. Sali, when you have an objection to make, you stand up and make a brief real objection that I can identify by evidence, code or whatever. Hearsay, circumstantial evidence, relevance, whatever either, anything beyond that is argumentative,” Bagley said. “Mr. Swart, that’s a torturous series of questions. You have to get to where you need to go faster, better, and streamline.”

Butler’s testimony ended the first week of the trial, which could continue until November 18. The trial resumed on Tuesday 8 November.

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