COLBERT COUNTY, Alabama (WHNT) – The man accused of killing a Sheffield police officer and another man was in court on Friday morning.
Brian Lansing Martin, 41, was in Judge Coker’s courtroom on Friday morning as the prosecution presented evidence and called witnesses in their case against him. Court records show Martin faces a total of 10 counts: four for capital murder, two for attempted murder, two for shooting into an occupied building, one count of felon in possession of a gun and one count of corpse abuse.
The prosecution called a number of officers and investigators to the stand to describe what happened on October 1 when Martin was charged with shooting and killing William Mealback Jr. and the police officer of Sheffield Nick Risner.
Details of Martin and Mealback’s relationship were exposed in court, with the two allegedly relatively close family friends.
A Muscle Shoals police investigator recalled recorded phone calls in prison between Martin and Mealback’s widow in which Martin allegedly told him there was a gun between the seats of the van, Mealback grabbed him and things got out of hand from there.
Court records allege Martin shot Mealback in the truck and then pushed him onto Avalon Avenue at Muscle Shoals, shortly after police said he led them in a high-speed chase through Sheffield.
Witnesses said Sheffield Sergeant Nick Risner ended the chase with a pit maneuver, they said at that point Martin started shooting Risner’s vehicle, hitting him in the outside of his bulletproof vest.
Risner later died of his injuries.
Dash cam video of the Sheffield chase and its ending was also played in court. The first time it was shown to the public. A special agent from the State Bureau of Investigation guided the court through the video.
The officer explained that the truck Martin was in and Risner’s car was window to window when Martin put his arm out the window and started shooting Risner’s vehicle. Investigators said Risner was shot in the armpits and his service weapon was still in its holster when he was examined for injuries.
After the defense called no witnesses, Judge Coker said the evidence coincided with the charges against Martin and tied the case to the grand jury.
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