MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Ohio (WDTN) – The trial for a man accused of shooting and killing two teenagers in a Dayton garage entered its second day one Wednesday.

Victor Santana is accused of killing 17-year-olds Javier Harrison and Devin Henderson in his garage on Conners Street on August 28, 2019.

A third person, Ja’shin Gibson, who was with Harrison and Henderson at the time of the shooting, took the stand on Wednesday. Gibson, now 21 years old, testified that the three had known each other since their youth and were looking for a place to smoke marijuana the night of the shooting. Soon after deciding to get in a car in what they thought was in an abandoned garage, they found themselves under gunfire. Gibson said the shooter offered no warning first.

“He was talking as he was shooting,” said Gibson. “But at the beginning he didn’t say nothing. He just opens [the door] and just started shooting.”

Gibson said he was in the front passenger seat of the vehicle inside the garage when the shooting began, with Henderson in the driver’s seat and Harrison in the back seat. Gibson said the shooter opened the back driver’s side door of the vehicle and immediately began firing, shooting Harrison.

He said the shooter then moved to the front driver’s side, aiming a gun inside the car. He said Henderson pushed the gun up and away, and attempted to get out of the car to find an exit. Henderson was shot while looking for an escape at the front of the garage.

The prosecution focused heavily on the fact that the teens were not armed and had no intent to do damage to the property, as everything was found intact following the incident. However, the defense focused on the lack of light around the property, arguing that Santana’s fear of what was happening outside may have been grounds to defend himself.

  • Victor Santana trial Day 2
  • Victor Santana trial Day 2
  • Victor Santana trial Day 2
  • Victor Santana trial Day 2

Defense attorney Lucas Wilder posed this question to a City of Dayton police sergeant, “Correct me if I’m wrong, but you saw an individual on the ground correct? And part of what you’re doing is you want to make sure that that person is not armed and dangerous? And then you notice at some point the person is not moving. But my question goes to, when you’re approaching someone, like this individual who’s in the back, do you have your weapon drawn?…because for all you know they could have a gun on them. And it’s pretty dark in that back area, right?

He further said that with the inability to see clearly, Santana may have had the right to protect himself.

A number of other detectives, police officers and a member of the coroner’s also took the stand Wednesday. 

Melissa Schloss, lead detective on the case, offered her testimony in the afternoon. She was also present during Santana’s questioning hours after the shooting, as well as for a second interview on November 18, 2019. 

In that interview, which was shown to jurors late Wednesday afternoon, Santana was seen talking to Schloss and a Spanish translator about the night of the incident. When asked why he didn’t stay inside or call the police about intruders in his garage, he listed a numbers of reasons, including his intent was to “get them out of there,” and that he fired because he worried he would “face a situation where they’d be shooting and I’d be shooting.”

Proceedings will continue Thursday morning at 9:30 a.m.