NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — A criminal court judge has denied a request for a change of venue in the trial of decommissioned Nashville police officer Andrew Delke.
Defense attorneys had requested that the trial be moved outside of Davidson County. In a written ruling issued Thursday afternoon, Judge Monte Watkins denied that request.
In a hearing held earlier this week, defense attorney David Raybin said they’re concerned about how prospective jurors’ attitudes have shifted after last year’s protests following the death of George Floyd while in police custody.
Early last year, Raybin requested that an outside jury be brought in, but the request was also denied.
Delke is facing a first-degree murder charge for shooting and killing Daniel Hambrick during a foot chase in 2018. Delke told the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation that he made the decision to shoot as a response to what he perceived as an “imminent threat” from Hambrick, who he says was running with a gun.
However, prosecutors said there was no such threat and surveillance video captured the shooting. Hambrick was shot in the back while running away from Delke.
Prosecutors have argued that it's a Nashville case that should and can be decided by a fair Nashville jury.
Delke’s jury trial is scheduled to begin on July 12 after being pushed back due to COVID-19. Right now, he remains out on bond.