The fatal shooting of an Arlington man May 10 was provoked by jealousy over a woman, an Arlington Circuit Court jury was told yesterday.
In closing arguments in the first-degree murder trial of Michael J. Gardner, a 31-year-old former Pentagon guard, assistant prosecutor Arthur Karp said Gardner set out that night with his "heart bent on mischief."
He claimed Gardner threatened and then shot 22-year-old Orlando C. Dominguez, who was living with Gardner's former girlfriend, out of jealousy and anger.
Dominguez was shot once in the chest in the corridor outside Carla Keastead's apartment at 955 S. Columbus St., Arlington, where Dominguez had lived for several weeks.
Defense attorney Irving Starr said Gardner shot Dominguez in self-defense.
The jurors deliberated for four hours yesterday after two and a half days of testimony. They are scheduled to resume deliberations this morning.
According to testimony, Gardner phoned Keastead early the evening of the shooting to ask if he could charge a long-distance call to her telephone.
Keastead, who said she had known Gardner for three years and had lived with him for a year and a half, told the jury she gave Gardner permission to charge the call.
Later, Gardner testified, he tried again to charge a call to Keastead's phone and was denied authorization. Gardner said he then phoned Keastead's apartment, where a man whose voice he did not recognize answered and refused to let him speak to Keastead.
Gardner testified he then drove to Keastead's apartment, planning to ask her for permission to try the call once more.
The idea of another man "cutting the last link" between Gardner and Keastead provoked his anger, Karp said in closing arguments to the jury yesterday.
"I think the motive is fairly obvious -- jealousy, wounded pride, some mixture of these," he said.
Starr maintained Gardner had no malicious intention and drew his gun only after Dominguez approached him in the corridor holding a knife.
Gardner, who testified that Dominguez ran toward him holding a large knife, demonstrated to the jury how he crouched to pull his gun from a holster under his boot and fired the weapon prematurely as he was standing up.
He testified he then panicked and fled from the apartment corridor.
Starr called the shooting "a pure and simple case of self-defense" in his closing arguments, adding there had been "a lot of smoke screens thrown around it."