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Earnhardt said mother threatened before fatal shooting

By Shavonne Potts
spotts@salisburypost.com
SALISBURY ó Robert Earnhardt told a Rowan County Sheriffís detective he saw someone point a shotgun toward his mother, Patty Elmore, and thatís when he fired a shotgun at his stepfather.
Earnhardt is on trial for first-degree murder in the death of his stepfather, Billy Tommy Elmore, who prosecutors say was shot Sept. 17, 2009 in the head at the home he had shared with his estranged wife, Patty Elmore, at 165 Leisure Lane.
Earnhardtís attorney, Jay White, said he intends to prove the shooting was self-defense.
Lt. Chad Moose testified today that Earnhardt re-enacted what occurred the night Billy Elmore was killed.
Jurors watched a video Tuesday in court that was at times difficult to understand.
Moose testified that before Earnhardt began re-enacting what occurred, he told the detective heíd been assaulted the day before. Moose said Earnhardt never specified who had assaulted him.
ěHe started off telling me about Tuesday. He said ëthey jumped him.í He knew they were coming back,î Moose said.
Earnhardt also told Moose he fired a ěwarningî shot into the vacant lot across the street from the Leisure Lane property. The shotgun was a single-shot type that required the user to reload before firing again.
Earnhardt told Moose he reloaded the shotgun after firing toward the vacant lot.
Moose told defense attorney White that Earnhardt wasnít sure whether he fired buckshot first and then reloaded with a slug.
ěHe thought they were going to kill his mother?î White asked Moose.
ěHe said either them or his family,î Moose said.
See Thursdayís Post for more.
Contact reporter Shavonne Potts at 704-797-4253.

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