A jury heard more testimony Wednesday in the trial of former Lubbock Police Corporal, 44-year-old Jay White. White is accused of felony domestic assault for incidents in 2014.
The legal proceedings in this case ended in a mistrial in May due to a juror being exposed to White’s story through news coverage.
White, currently a martial arts instructor, served with the Lubbock Police from 2002 to 2014.
Wednesday afternoon the defense called forward a Lubbock Police detective as well as Mr. White himself to testify. The defense’s questioning for Mr. White took up the bulk of the time on Wednesday. In an emotional testimony, White not denied the allegations against him, saying he had never been violent with or assaulted his former fiancé– not on October 17, 2014, not in Ruidoso, NM in September of that year, not ever.
According to White’s testimony, he and his former fiancé had been together since 2012. They had moved into a home together in 2013 and were planning to get married. He said he loved her and her children. But White expressed concern about his former fiancé’s alcohol use, recalling that she liked to drink almost every single day, and that he, “could remember times when she drank two bottles [of wine] a day,”
He said there were times when his former fiancé was physically violent toward him, and that frequently those instances were tied to alcohol use.
White cried on the stand explaining that his relationships with his sons from his previous marriage had changed because of his former fiancé. “It got to the point where they didn’t want to be with me, because they knew what was going on in the relationship,” he said.
White recounted an incident in September of 2014 when he and his former fiancé went to Ruidoso to work out some of their serious disagreements which were beginning to impact his children. He said they both drank together and after he said he wouldn’t go to the casino with her, they began fighting. He said his then-fiancé drove off in her vehicle, then returned saying she was going to drive back to Lubbock. Because she was intoxicated, White told her he didn’t want her driving back in the state she was in, and tossed her keys out the window. Despite more fighting on that trip and disapproval from his family, White stayed with her after that incident, hoping things would turn around.
He said that on October 17 of 2014, both had been drinking and a disagreement spiraled out of control when they returned to their house. White said his then-fiancé got a text from a friend who he was concerned was encouraging her alcohol use. He said that when his then-fiancé saw him, she rushed at him and tried to grab the phone. White testified that she bit him in an effort to retrieve the phone. He said the phone fell to the ground, he grabbed it after struggling with her son for control of the phone. Then White said he threw the phone and it broke.
He said his former fiancé reentered the room with a baseball bat, and that she walked in and smashed his phone.
White recalled yelling to the children, who were present at that time, to call the police. He said he sat up to protect his items that were being smashed, and then was attacked with the baseball bat.
He believes he may have suffered a concussion as a result of this. White said his injuries on that day included: three broken ribs, his orbital socket being smashed, a collapsed lung, a bloodied nose, and a bloodied lip. He only remembers being hit in the head with the bat by his former fiancé, he surmises from his injuries that she also hit him in the ribs.
The jury was presented with pictures of White with bruises as well as images of blood splattered on the bed.
White said he did hop a fence and damage property in trying to retrieve his keys after that incident, but that none of his injuries were a result of the fence-hopping.
He said these injuries were a result of being attacked by Kim who was wielding a baseball bat. White said that he was checked out and by a doctor when he had trouble breathing shortly after the incident. He said he was called back to the emergency room for treatment shortly after.
White’s former finance and her children testified Tuesday. She said that during an incident in Ruidoso in September of 2014, White accused her of liking his brother, then grabbing her by the throat and hitting her with an open fist. Then in an incident on October 17 2014, she said that after she and White shared two bottles of wine, they got into a fight when White began yelling in front of her kids and punched the wall above her daughter’s head. She explained that during that incident, she got a baseball bat and smashed White’s phone with the bat. She denied hitting White in the face with a baseball bat. She also denied drinking on a daily basis
White said that he was not violent toward Kim or her children on the incident on October 17, but he did admit he acted in reasonable self defense to avoid being hit by the baseball bat. He did explain that he had punched the wall out of frustration that day.
A detective employed with Lubbock Police who worked with White testified for the defense that he, “never saw Jay lose his temper. I never saw him have any anger management issues, ” the detective said.
Wednesday morning the state called forward three witnesses who work for the Lubbock Police Department, all discussed events which occurred in October of 2014.
A Lubbock Police detective took the stand, testifying that White’s medical records were inconsistent with the injuries he told the detective about. The detective explained during the cross examination that there were inconsistencies in the testimony of White’s account of what happened and in his former fiancé’s account . The detective believed that White had committed “assault domestic violence” against more than one victim on more than one occasion.
A Sergeant with Lubbock Police testified that he arrived to White’s home on standby on October 19, 2014, and relieved the two responding officers. That sergeant noted injuries to White’s face and a hole in the dry wall in the kitchen. He had asked White if his injuries were inflicted by his former fiancé, White said no. The Sergeant told the court that he had planned to leave the house, under the impression that the situation was resolved, when he encountered White’s mother. She told the Sergeant that White may have been beaten up with a bat. White later testified Wednesday that he lied to that Sergeant and said the bruises came form a four-wheeler accident. White said he lied because he cares about his former fiancé’s kids and didn’t want them to risk their mother going to jail.
A LPD investigator also testified to the inconsistencies in testimonies from both involved parties. The investigator went to check on White when he was admitted to the hospital for injuries and said that White had asked him not to share with others in the police department about his being admitted to the hospital.
White said on the witness stand later that day that he had lied to the investigator because he didn’t want to reveal what happened on October telling the investigator he fell from a fence.
A press release issued by the LPD from October of 2014 said, “Corporal White’s fiancé contacted LPD Internal Affairs and reported an incident of alleged domestic violence that occurred in Lubbock a few days prior.”
White also cited an incident in the Spring of 2014, when his former fiancé assaulted him. He said, “she placed her hands on my face and pushed my head back, she took off her engagement ring and struck me in the face with it.” White called police during this incident and the took statements from him.
His testimony told the story of a romance that spiraled into denial and fighting. When asked why he remained in the relationship with his former fiancé if she had been violent with him and abused alcohol, White said over and over it was because he loved this woman and her children.
White said he was arrested by Lubbock Police roughly two weeks after the incident. He said that he went to jail and came back to his shared home a day later, to find everything in the home gone.
White closed out his testimony Wednesday by stating that he didn’t still love his former fiancé, and that he believes the whole situation cost him his police license.
The state rested its case in this trial Wednesday morning. The state will question White on Thursday morning, and the defense will call forward more witnesses.