Nkosi Thandiwe, the former security guard on trial for the 2011 Midtown shooting that killed one woman and left another paralyzed, took the stand in his own defense Wednesday and confessed to the shooting.
WGCL-TV reported that on Day 2 of the trial Thandiwe testified that he snapped and was upset about the way white people treated black people.
The news station’s reporter, Tony McNary, was at the Fulton County Courthouse and tweeted Wednesday,
“Man on trial for Midtown murder and shooting two other women said his spiritual views about the world and how whites treated blacks changed during his last 2yrs in college.”
Thandiwe had pleaded not guilty to murder and other charges connected to the July 2011 shooting spree at the Proscenium building that left Brittney Watts dead at the scene, injured Tiffany Ferenczy in the leg and paralyzed Lauren Garcia.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that Thandiwe said his mind was a blank as he shot Watts:
“It was almost like watching myself in action,” Thandiwe told a Fulton County jury in the second day of his trial. “I tell her to get out of (her) car. She screams. I fire. She drops to the ground.”
Thandiwe testified that he got angry at his supervisor earlier in the day and "almost" pulled his gun on him, the AJC reported.
Last April, Garcia and Ferenczy, along with Brian Watts, whose young wife was killed that mid-summer afternoon, all filed separate lawsuits against Allied Barton Security Services and the owners of the building in Fulton County Superior Court. Allied Barton employed Thandiwe as a security guard at the building and the complaints claim negligence on the part of the company.
WSB-TV reported last spring that after examining the 43-page lawsuit, it appeared that race may have played a role in the triple-shooting rampage.
According to WSB at the time, the lawsuit said the accused shooter, who is black, “demonstrated an intensely negative attitude toward another race, which was unnamed.”
The news outlet went on to report that weeks before the shooting, Thandiwe had been involved in an altercation with a building visitor, as WSB said he “assailed a visiting courier with racial epithets and had to be physically restrained by company personnel from striking and causing harm to visitors.”
The defendant reportedly bought the Glock semi-automatic handgun that was used in the shootings just over two weeks before the incident. The shootings took place in the parking garage of the building that Thandiwe was assigned to protect.
Judge Kelly A. Lee of Fulton County Superior Court ordered a mental evaluation for Thandiwe in November 2011. Lee ruled the following spring that Thandiwe was capable of comprehending what was happening during a trial.
Check back for continuing updates.
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