Apr 20, 2015 4:17 PM
Man shot by police to be tried for criminal threatening, reckless conduct charges
DOVER - A man who was shot twice by police after an incident at his Lee home in 2012 appeared at Strafford County Superior Court Monday.
Steven Amazeen, 48, who lived at 289 Lee Hook Road at the time of the shooting, shook his head as the charges against him were read prior to jury selection for his upcoming trial. Prosecutors say the shooting of Amazeen was justified because he acted aggressively and brandished a firearm after police responded to a domestic dispute between the man and his wife.
According to the Attorney General's report on the events of Dec. 3, 2012, Amazeen and his wife had a five-year-old child, but she wanted to divorce him because their finances were strained, and a death in the family added to the couple's stress.
When Amazeen's wife announced she wanted to divorce, he fired his handgun into the bedroom floor. Then he went outside, saying he was going to "take care" of the situation.
According to court documents, the woman called police, and when they arrived at the scene Amazeen told them, "I know to shoot for the head" and "I have five bullets left; let's see what happens."
Allegedly, Amazeen approached the officers who responded aggressively, and they shot him in the left thigh and shoulder.
Amazeen's AMT Backup .380 pistol was recovered at the scene. He was charged with eight counts of Class A felony-level criminal threatening and eight counts of Class B felony-level reckless conduct, according to indictment paperwork provided by the court clerk.
On Monday afternoon, public defender Joachim Barth told potential jurors he will defend Amazeen against "each and every one of these charges."
Barth asked the jurors if they could seperate their own opinions about guns from the facts and law relevant to the case.
Barth also asked jurors about their feelings on suicide. Amazeen was allegedly going outside to harm himself when his wife called police.
Deputy County Attorney Alysia Cassotis asked the potential jurors about truth-telling and perception, and how reality might be affected by a personal relationship.
"Maybe a person would downplay the situation, make it look like it's not as bad as it seems," one female potential juror replied.
Amazeen's trial is scheduled to begin April 27, and should last approximately one week.