Man testifies he acted in selfdefense in Battle Ground slaying

first_imgA man on trial for allegedly beating an acquaintance to death with a baseball bat testified Thursday that he feared for his life, was acting in self-defense and didn’t intend to kill the man.Stephen Reichow told a Clark County Superior Court jury that the acquaintance, Brandon Maulding, was intoxicated and charged at him with a bat in his hand while outside a storage warehouse in Battle Ground.“I’m really panicked at this point. I’m feeling hunted,” said the 35-year-old Battle Ground man, who’s facing murder charges.The case went to the jury late Thursday. Deliberations will resume Monday.Reichow said he put up his hand to stop the blow from Maulding, grabbed the baseball bat and yanked it away. Maulding’s hands appeared to go to his pockets, where Reichow knew there was a pocket knife, he said, so his protective instincts took over.“I struck my attacker several times,” Reichow said, adding that he did not hesitate. “I’m just trying to stop the attack.”Reichow said it was dark and that he couldn’t see the extent of Maulding’s injuries or the amount of blood as he lay on the ground. He asked the man if he wanted him to call for help, he said, and then he crouched down and checked his pulse. That’s when he went to seek help at a nearby residence and had them call 911, he said.Maulding, who was 36, was later pronounced dead at an area hospital.But in his closing arguments later Thursday afternoon, Deputy Prosecutor James Smith urged the jury not to take Reichow’s story at face value.last_img