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Florida High School Football Coach to Face Trial over Las Vegas Death

Mar 6, 2012

Knockout death in casino
Blackjack death

A Florida football coach with face trail over a man’s death in a Las Vegas casino.

Benjamin Gerard Hawkins, a former Florida high school football coach is to stand trial, following the death of a man in a Las Vegas casino restroom, according to the very latest US casino gambling news.

Mr. Hawkins is presently being charged with manslaughter, following the one-punch death of John Massie, last July 6th in Las Vegas, a gambling resort renowned for its large money Black Jack Tournament and poker tables.

William Jansen, Las Vegas Justice Of The Peace has deemed it up to a jury to decide whether or not Mr. Hawkins was defending himself when he struck Mr. Massie in the early hours, in the casino. If found guilty, he could face probation or even up to four years in jail for the offense.

It is rumored that the altercation came about after Mr. Massie used racial slurs in the rest-room and continued to do so, upon leaving the room, along with Mr. Hawkins. Las Vegas Police Detective Jeff Rosgen has confirmed that Mr. Hawkins told him of Mr. Massie’s racial comments, and that he felt threatened when Mr. Massie continued by waiting outside of the rest-room door for Mr. Hawkins.

Detective Rosgen stated that, “Mr. Hawkins said that while he was in the bathroom, this gentleman bumped or touched him. He made some racial comments and he was aggressive toward Mr. Hawkins — ‘black guy this and black guy that.’ He believed Mr. Massie was going to strike him and hurt in some way, so he hit him. He said he was afraid to turn his back — that Mr. Massie was going to strike him in the back of the head.”

According to Mr. Hawkin’s lawyer, Jack Buchanen, Mr. Hawkins was merely defending himself, along with his wife and two friends who were enjoying a blackjack cards game, a mere several steps away from the incident.

Although the casino surveillance video tape is in silent, Mr. Massie appears next to Mr. Hawkins, as Mr. Hawkins walks back towards the blackjack game and his companions. It then appears as though Mr. Massie takes two steps towards Mr. Hawkins before Hawkins spins around and punches out Massie.

Mr. Massie, of Utah, was knocked out cold and later died at hospital of severe brain trauma. Mr. Hawkins stood by and waited for police and security arrive, and despite being originally arraigned for murder, the case has been dropped to manslaughter, on the account that Mr. Hawkins was defending himself against an aggressive Mr. Massie. Mr. Hawkins has since been removed from his role as a Florida high school football coach, pending the outcome of the trial.


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