(Clarinda) — Jury deliberations are underway in a Page County murder trial.
Following closing arguments and instructions Thursday morning, jurors were dismissed to the jury room to begin deliberations at 11:37 a.m. Prosecutors accuse 34-year-old Toby Lee McCunn of Red Oak is charged with first-degree murder in the death of 33-year-old Joshua Lyle Jordan of Shenandoah on April 22nd. Defense Attorney Andrew Munger argued in his closing statement that the state has not proven its case beyond a reasonable doubt.
"The state has the burden of proof," said Munger. "They can demonstrate from the evidence or the lack of evidence. When you go back in that jury room and you're deliberating amongst yourselves, I want you to think: would you hesitate to act based upon what the state has not shown you in this case?"
McCunn’s attorneys argue that Jordan drew a gun and fired first and was killed in the ensuing shootout. State Assistant Attorney General Doug Hammerand says the case is a murder case and not self-defense.
"Why would you make statements about killing somebody ahead of time if it's self-defense?" said Hammerand. "Why would you lure somebody in the house if it's self-defense? This whole idea that (McCunn) was just trying to talk to (Jordan), it's 4:30 in the morning on a Sunday. Why do you lure somebody in the house to talk to them with a 9 millimeter pointed at him that's loaded? Does that make sense? It makes no sense. You're not talking to people at 4:30 in the morning. If you do, you don't need to have a 9 millimeter pointed at their head."
Munger says McCunn went to 901 Manti Road on April 22nd with the intent of recovering stolen property, not with the intent of murdering anyone.
"Is it reasonable to believe that a person who is trying to recover his property that he spent one or two months trying to recover would want to kill the person he is trying to get the property back from?" said Munger. "It reminds me of the old adage, you can't get blood from a stone. You can't get your property back if that person is dead."
Hammerand paints a different picture, saying McCunn was waiting for Jordan with a gun with the intent of harming him.
"(McCunn) was over there waiting for him and he did shoot first," said Hammerand. "It makes no sense why Josh would shoot first. The defendant is not going to sit there and watch him pull out a gun and shoot at him. It absolutely makes no sense."
Jurors have the option of convicting McCunn of the first-degree murder charge, second-degree murder, voluntary manslaughter or involuntary manslaughter or to find him not guilty. Stay with KMA News for the latest updates following the verdict.