Surveillance footage details night Brian Cruz died - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Surveillance footage details night Brian Cruz died

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It was a drunken night on the town that turned into tragedy, and while the defendants claim to have blacked out, surveillance footage tells all.

One man is charged with manslaughter.

"He knocked him down," described Assistant Attorney General Jeremy Kemper. "His body went limp. Hit the ground."  The other, the man driving the car, charged with kidnapping. Kemper continued, "The evidence will not show that anyone took Mr. Cruz to the hospital. They took him to Linda's Diner."

It was just over a year ago. Friends Jaycee White, Alfredo Castro, Richard Ragadio, and Brian Cruz went drinking in Tumon. Though the surviving men wouldn't remember much from that night, Kemper says closed-circuit television footage can fill in the blanks.

"There is video in this case, which is rare in a homicide case. You can actually see what happened," he detailed.

Defense attorney Randy Cunliffe represents White, attorney John Morrison for Castro. Both counsels had explanations for their clients' actions. That Cruz was agitated, acting out, and instigating a fight with a bouncer from a nearby club.

White, Castro, and Ragadio would get Cruz into the car and away from the confrontation, but he'd jump out at the traffic light and run back to the scene, and his friends followed after him.

Cunlifee said, "You'll see in the video Mr. Cruz hit Mr. Ragadio and Mr. Ragadio loses his balance and almost falls down. At that point Mr. White comes up and hits Mr. Cruz one time, defending his friend from an attack from Mr. Cruz."

Morrison declared, "At this point it seems like that's a good thing. He's asleep. He's going to sleep it off previously he'd been violent and been reacting poorly and jumping out of cars, and they figured they'd take him to breakfast. And if he's up by then, they'll go in and have some, if he's not up by then, they'd get him some take out."

But, Cruz would never wake up. Police responding to a separate incident at Linda's Coffee Shop would discover him, still unconscious, in the back of a car.

He died days later from severe head injuries.

Defense pointing the blame at GPD. "You'll see in the video the police officer open the door of the vehicle that Mr. Cruz is seated in," said Cunliffe. "You will see him take Mr. Cruz and pull him out by the arm, out of the car and he bangs his head on the pavement with his feet still in the vehicle."

Defense's theory was quickly disproven by Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Aurelio Espinola who testified late Tuesday afternoon. Last to take the stand, Ragadio who previously entered a plea agreement with the government.

Ragadio is spared jail time on the condition he testify against his co-defendants.

He confirmed defense's previous statements - that the men had too much to drink and had to keep Cruz from a scuffle, but also that they meant their beloved friend no harm.

When asked why Ragadio took a plea deal, he responded, "I didn't want to lose my kids."

Trial will resume on Wednesday.

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