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AUSTIN (KXAN) – On the fourth day of Daniel Perry’s trial, the man accused of murder Garrett Foster at a July 2020 Black Lives Matter demonstration, state attorneys played a 911 call Perry made following the deadly incident.
“I made a wrong turn, a guy pointed a freakin weapon at me and I panicked. I don’t know what to do. I’m just an Uber driver. I made a wrong turn; I’ve never had to shoot someone before. They started shooting back at me, and I got out of the area,” Perry told a 911 operator.
“I am scared. I am terrified. I am worried that they are going to go after me,” he told the operator. “I’ve never had to defend myself before.”
Former Austin Police Department Officer Joshua Visi responded and found a very distressed Perry.
“I could tell that he was visibly distraught,” Visi testified to the court Friday. “I could hear the nervousness, the quiver in his voice.”
When Visi responded to the scene, Perry recounted the events leading up to the incident. Perry told Visi that he had made a wrong turn and was suddenly surrounded by a large group of people. Perry is accused by the state of using his car as a weapon and driving into the protesters.
“He said the protesters were attacking his vehicle,” Visi testified.
Later, state attorneys played Visi’s and other responding officers’ body camera videos. Perry can be heard in the video saying he thought the protesters were attacking his car with cans. He can also be heard saying that Foster was pointing his weapon at him.
Perry, an Army sergeant and part-time Uber driver, was indicted in the case in 2021 on felony charges of murder and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and a misdemeanor charge of deadly conduct. Perry entered a not-guilty plea Tuesday.
Several witnesses, who were at the protest demonstration the night Foster died, were called to testify Thursday. They recalled seeing Perry’s car drive forward into a crowd of protesters. The protesters, which included Foster, became “incensed” at the presence of the vehicle, a witness said.
“I saw the car and the crowd; the crowd was upset and incensed,” said Brandon Keeton, a protester there that night who was friendly with Foster.
Keeton said he saw the driver — later revealed to be Perry — reach to the passenger side of the vehicle, pull out a gun and fire into the crowd of protesters.
“I was hit with the reality of what was happening in front of me and I bolted,” Keeton said.
Also among the witnesses called to testify Friday were crime scene specialists, a firearm examiner and a medical examiner who conducted Foster’s autopsy.
Dr. Jennifer Dierksen, who conducted Foster’s autopsy, said that there were four bullet shot wounds, two with exit wounds, on Foster’s body.
There was also some discussion about whether the gunshot wounds in Foster’s body were consistent with how Perry described how Foster held the weapon.