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Prosecution Rests In Indiana Co. Murder Trial

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

TrinaOrlando Trina Orlando
Trina Orlando joined the KDKA news team in August 2008 as the...
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INDIANA (KDKA) – Prosecutors in Indiana County spent the morning wrapping up their case against Shaun Fairman.

Fairman is accused of murdering his estranged wife’s father, during a drunken rampage.

The 33-year old Fairman admits to killing his estranged father-in-law, but defense attorneys want jurors to believe that he suffers from a mental infirmity that impaired his judgment the night of the murder.

Richard Shotts, 55, was shot and killed last year at his daughter’s Route 210 home in North Mahoning.

On Wednesday, jurors heard from two final witnesses for the prosecution – Pennsylvania State Police Investigator Shaun Compton and also a man named William Troup, who said Fairman stole a gun from him.

Defense attorneys presented their case Wednesday afternoon and Fairman took the stand in his own defense.

Fairman testified that he was distraught and depressed over his divorce, saying that he went to the house to kill himself in front of his estranged wife, but was confronted by her father.

“I wanted to shoot myself in front of (my wife),” he said. “… I didn’t want to hurt anyone else. Not my kids, not her, not her dad. I didn’t know her dad was going to be there.”

Fairman said Shotts shot at him first while trying to keep him out of the house, and that he only fired back at Shotts to get him to stop.

“A second later, I heard a gunshot, heard the window break,” he said. “I thought he was shooting at me.”

Fairman said he decided to kill himself after he was served his divorce papers and had spent the day drinking.

Jeffrey Faulk also testified that Fairman had been drinking the day of the murder and he had left the bar intent on killing himself in front of his estranged wife.

Two psychologists, one for the defense and one for the prosecution, were expected to testify after hearing Fairman’s testimony.

Closing arguments are expected Thursday.

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