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Video Evidence Used In Self-Defense Case

Posted at 4:11 PM, Mar 03, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-03 19:28:59-05

Security video of a woman pulling a gun on a man in a Walmart parking lot has become key evidence in the controversial case.

It's a case that has asked the question: When you can you legally pull a weapon? The question before the court is whether the situation justified whether a woman pulled a gun in a crowded parking lot.

Original Story: Woman Arrested After She Said She Pulled Gun In Self-Defense

"It scared me absolutely to death," said Sherry McLain. She said pulled a gun when a man approached her in a Walmart parking lot last November in Murfreesboro. At the time, she told us she saw it as a threat.

"I have never been so afraid of anything in my whole life I don't think," said McLain, in an exclusive interview last November.

The man told police he only asked for a light. Officers arrested McLain, but if she perceived a threat, didn't she have a right to defend herself?

The day after her arrest police explained, otherwise. "There was no reason for her to perceive any legitimate threat," said Sgt. Kyle Evans with the Murfreesboro police last November.

Newschannel5 has obtained a copy of the security video showing what happened. The video is fuzzy and shot from a distance.

It shows McLain loading groceries into her car, then move to return her shopping cart. At that same time, a man walks out of the Walmart, and makes his way into the parking lot, passing by McLain.

He told police he had just bought cigarettes and stopped about ten feet from McLain to ask for a light. That's when she pulls a gun.

"What are we supposed to do if we can't protect ourselves? I'm 67-years-old," said McLain remembering that moment.

Witnesses said McLain pointed the weapon, and the man quickly moved away. He also then stopped to tell a woman nearby and her grandson what happened.

They witnesses then see McLain with the gun and move to hide beside their vehicle, the little boy crouching beside the right front tire.

Based on the video, prosecutors said McLain did not have good reason to pull her weapon in a crowded parking lot.

She was charged with aggravated assault and reckless endangerment. The criminal case has been sent to the grand jury.

The witnesses involved, the grandmother and her grandson hiding behind their car, was considering a civil lawsuit against McLain saying her action traumatized the child.