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Prosecutors want expert’s testimony blocked from Hamad trial

WARREN, Ohio -

Trumbull County Prosecutors are asking a judge to rule out expert testimony that could be used to attempt to prove that an accused murderer was acting out of self defense.

A motion, filed by Assistant County Prosecutor Chris Becker, says that the defense team for Nasser Hamad, who is charged with two counts of aggravated murder and several counts of attempted murder, plans to have a psychologist present expert testimony. 

The motion says that Hamad plans to use that testimony to prove that he feared for his life, and acted out of self-defense in February. 

During the course of several pretrials, attorneys for Hamad have made the case that he was defending himself from intruders on his property. 

In the motion filed this week by Atty. Becker, prosecutors now say that Hamad cannot use a psychologist’s testimony in self defense.

Their argument says that in ordinary circumstances, only cases involving battered women or battered children can include psychological testimony to prove self-defense. 

48-year-old Hamad is accused of goading a group of men to come to his home on a busy stretch of Route 46 in Howland, through a conversation on Facebook. 

When the group arrived at his home, in a van driven by a woman, identified as April Trent Vokes, Hamad allegedly came out of his home, and began arguing with the group. 

The prosecutors say that after a physical confrontation in Hamad’s front yard, the five people began to get back into their vehicle with the intention of leaving.

According to the prosecutors, Hamad retrieved a loaded 9 mm weapon from his house, then came back outside and began firing into the five people in the van.

 Prosecutors say Hamad then walked back into the home and reloaded his gun with a 15 round magazine, before going back out to the van. 

Hamad is due back in court on Wednesday for a final appearance before the trial against him begins in October. If convicted, Hmada could face the death penalty. 

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