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Fatal police trial involving a BPD death is now in jury's hands

Julian Hernandez facing five charges
Posted: 10:38 AM, Apr 04, 2018
Updated: 2018-04-05 00:40:38Z

It’s now up to the jury to decided if a Bakersfield man was guilty in the death of a Bakersfield police officer.

Julian Hernandez is facing charges after leading BPD on a high speed pursuit near Bakersfield College resulting in the death of Officer David Nelson.

Wednesday both sides presented their closing arguments before the case was sent to the jury in the afternoon.

Judge John Lua, presiding over the Julian Hernandez trial, instructed the jury to consider causation the same as intent when making their decision as they deliberate on Wednesday morning.

Deputy District Attorney, Jim Simson said, "He couldn't just foresee something dangerous was going to happen, he was planning for something dangerous to happen."

Simson argued Julian Hernandez's track record is evidence that he knew what he was doing when he led Officer Nelson on a chase in the early hours of June 26, 2015.

The prosecution argued that evidence includes evading arrest, leading Officer Nelson on a high speed pursuit, having a shotgun near the scene, and having dealer plates on his car. Simson reiterated what the judge said that knowing what the cause could be is the same as intending to do it.

"It's just another way of saying if you put somebody, if you create a dangerous situation, um, you don't get off the hook when human beings turn out to be killed," said Simson

Hernandez's defense attorney, Ronald Carter, argued there was reasonable doubt that Hernandez was even the driver in the car or if someone else was driving the car. He stated there weren't any eye witnesses to say how many people were in the car or what the driver might have looked like. Carted also added Hernandez wasn't found and arrested until about 32 hours after the Officer Nelson crashed.

"We don't know if somebody was allowed to borrow it, who might have been allowed to borrow it, when they might have been allowed to borrow it. The fact is when don't even know when the automobile back to the apartment," said Carter. 

Hernandez is currently facing five charges from the the deadly pursuit, including second degree murder, and evading an officer causing death.

The jury left less then an hour before being sent to deliberations. They're schedule to continue Thursday.

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