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    Prosecutor won’t file charges in Callaway County shooting based on self-defense argument

    By Lucas Geisler,


    FULTON, Mo. (KMIZ)

    The Callaway County prosecutor will not file charges against the man who shot and killed another man outside of a bar earlier this year.

    Prosecutor Ben Miller wrote in a letter Thursday to the Callaway County Sheriff's Office that he would not charge 64-year-old Dennis W. Collier for killing 26-year-old Orion Quesenberry. Miller's memo said he did not believe he could prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Collier committed a crime versus acting in self-defense.

    "If this case was filed and presented to a jury, Mr. Collier would be entitled to a self-defense instruction," Miller said. "Based upon my experience, training, and understanding of the law, I do not believe the State would be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Mr. Collier did not act in lawful self-defense."

    Collier shot Quesenberry outside of Uncle D's Bar and Grill early in the morning on March 2. The sheriff's office investigated for a month , collecting forensic evidence, photographs and interviews.

    Miller's memo said Collier shot Quesenberry during an argument outside of the bar. The memo said Collier had thrown Quesenberry out of the bar after the two fought inside. Miller noted that he felt Quesenberry had committed felony assault inside of the bar based on injuries to Collier and the broken items found inside, and that Quesenberry pushed another person down who had tried to break up the fight.

    Miller said the other person called 9-1-1 after Collier and Quesenberry started fighting and went outside. Miller said Collier was standing in between the bar and Quesenberry. Quesenberry went back to his car at one point but came back when Collier told him they would take care of a woman passed out inside who had come with Quesenberry.

    The dispatch recording picks up a 20-minute argument between the two, where "Collier both taunted and insulted Quesenberry and threatened to shoot him if he came any closer to the bar," Miller wrote.

    "Quesenberry, seemingly undeterred, continued making attempts to come back into the bar. Collier ultimately ends up with his back to the door that leads back into the bar. Ultimately, Collier fatally shoots Quesenberry one time in the chest after Quesenberry was coming towards Collier and had closed the distance to roughly 4 feet of Collier."

    State law allows someone to use deadly force if they reasonably believe it will protect them from a forcible felony, such as assault. Since Collier owned the business and residence there, Miller said he did not have a "duty to retreat" back to the building.

    Quesenberry's mother, Shannon Holzhauser, wished "nothing but the worst" for Collier after hearing about the evidence. She said she questioned whether Collier actually feared for his safety based on the description of the taunts caught on the dispatch call.

    The post Prosecutor won’t file charges in Callaway County shooting based on self-defense argument appeared first on ABC17NEWS .

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