Jury kept out of much of Hargrave trial

Lawyers, judge wrangle over admisablity

POSTED: 4:37 PM PST November 6, 2012 
BEND, Ore. -

Before a witness takes the stand in a trial, a judge decides whether their testimony is admissible in court. Many times, when a witness is rejected, it's because their testimony is not considered "expert" or it is determined to be hear-say or just not relevant.

Tuesday morning, the defense and state in Jim Hargrave's murder trial disagreed over whether his doctors should be allowed to testify.

Dr. Jerry Larsen, a psychiatrist, did in fact end up testifying later in the afternoon. He specifically addressed what a .38 blood alcohol level would do to a person.

"There are very few instances where people with a .4 blood alcohol level even survive," said Larsen. "This is getting close to a lethal level."

The importance of Larsen's statement is Steven Hargrave had a .38 blood alcohol level when his father, Jim Hargrave shot and killed him at the family's Tumalo home last December.

The defense used this to try to show Hargrave was very drunk when the argument escalated that night.

Tuesday marked the beginning of the third week of Hargrave's murder trial; it's expect to last four weeks. If convicted of murder Hargrave, could get a minimum mandatory sentence of 25 years in prison.