Day 3: Payne takes stand in trial - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Day 3: Payne takes stand in trial

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(KWWL) -

UPDATE: Today, the Jury finds Lt. Corbin Payne not guilty in misdemeanor charge of assault causing bodily injury. 

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A Waterloo police lieutenant on trial for assault charges told the jury his intent was to de-escalate the situation when he put his hands on a delivery driver during an alleged road rage incident in June. 

Lt. Corbin Payne took the stand to defend himself against misdemeanor charges of assault during the third day of his trial. 

The trial surrounds an alleged  road rage incident with a delivery driver from East China restaurant on the night of June 12.  Payne accused that driver, Robert Carlisle, Jr of speeding and cutting him off. Carlisle testified Payne, who was off duty, pounded on his vehicle, grabbed him by the throat and pulled him out from his vehicle in the parking lot of the Kimball Ridge Shopping Center. 

The defense presented their case using testimony from both Lt. Payne and witnesses to point to the victim, Robert Carlisle, as a "reckless" driver. 

Defense attorneys Heather Prendergast and Carter Stevens brought in multiple witnesses to testify on Carlisle's driving behaviors.

Witnesses who took the stand, described Carlisle's driving as "reckless," mentioning his speeding habits and one woman testifying to a road rage encounter with Carlisle. 

Payne's wife Rossi, who was driving the car that night, also took the stand. Mrs.Payne testified to becoming concerned when saw the erratic driver, saying the driver came up abruptly, which sent her in a scare. According to her testimony, she was unsure what was going on with the driver, but their driving seemed unusual, weaving in and out of traffic and at a high rate of speed. 

"I told him that we needed to go get that plate number," said Rossi Payne. Her husband, responded, "What?" "And I said well that's scary, our kids drive up and down that road every single day," said Rossi Payne. 

Rossi and her husband Corbin follow Carlisle, the driver, into the parking lot. She then recounts that her husband gets out of the car and approaches the drivers car. Rossi says as she was sitting in the car, she could only hear her husband Corbin asking Carlisle about his driving. Then, she sees the car door open and Carlisle's hand and foot come out of the car towards her husband. 

When Payne took the stand, he told the jury that he was simply trying to keep Carlisle away from him. 

Payne says he walked up to Carlisle's drivers-side door, knocked and was ignored. He knocked again, and that's when Carlisle began to swear at him inside his car. 

"He goes what the **** is your problem?" said Lt. Payne. "So at that time he unlocked the door. He opened the door so I could speak with him. I said what's the problem, you okay? What's the problem with your driving? You about hit us back here. He goes f*** mother f****. "I'm like this is not planning out the way I expected it to be. My intent was not to go up there smashing windows and having this conversation with this person. The intent was to find out why he was driving like this."

Payne went on to describe what happened when Carlisle opened his car door. 

"That's when he comes towards me in an aggressive manner," said Lt. Payne. "I backed up a little bit. As he came out I put my hand on his chest area to keep him away from me."

At that time, the witness Nihad Masic, who was in the parking lot and saw the two, started yelling that he would call the police. Lt. Payne said that is when he identified himself as a police officer. 

Rossi testified that she got out of the car and told Masic to call the police. That's when she grabbed Corbin and they left. 

The two testified to making themselves readily available for questioning by Sheriff deputies the night of the incident. However, they said nobody came to question them that night.

Closing arguments are set for tomorrow. 

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