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Woman Who Survived Village Shalom Shooting Testifies

On the second day of the accused Jewish Community Center shooter’s trial, Maggie Hunker told the jury she stared down the barrel of Frazier Glenn Cross Jr.’s gun and lived to tell the tale.

Hunker testified she had just finished lunch with a friend at the Village Shalom retirement home when she watched Cross gun down Terri LaManno in the parking lot.

“She was screaming, ‘No, no, no!’” said Hunker.

Hunker said at first, she was too stunned by what was happening to be scared. She said after she saw Cross shoot LaManno, he turned to her and asked, “Are you a Jew?”

She told him no, she wasn’t. “I thought if I gave the wrong answer, he would shoot me.”

After Hunker watched Cross drive away, she got in her call and called 911. “I became very, very scared he would come back, that he would realize he should have shot me too because I saw what happened,” she told Johnson County Assistant District Attorney Chris McMullin.

Back at the preliminary hearing in March, Cross asked Hunker if she honest when he asked about her religion. When Hunker said yes, he chillingly replied he was glad he didn’t shoot her.

On Tuesday, he wanted to know if Hunker saw LaManno move or cry out after she was shot. Hunker replied no, she didn’t see LaManno move.

“Has it ever been in your mind since then that perhaps she died very quickly because she was intended to die very quickly?” Cross asked. “Has that ever occurred to you?”

McMullin objected, which Judge Thomas Kelly Ryan sustained. Even though he’s been told he can’t argue he had a “compelling necessity” to kill Jews, Cross continues to try to build a case to the jury that he had no choice but to kill three people on April 13, 2014. He called LaManno, as well as William Corporon and Reat Underwood, “innocent bystanders” on the first day of the trial.

The trial is expected to last about three weeks.

Elle Moxley covered education for KCUR.
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