ELYRIA — A Lorain County common pleas judge briefly stopped the trial of Tina D’Agostino after she complained that a photographer was in the courtroom.
The trial before a jury in the courtroom of Judge Christopher Rothgery resumed after a brief recess.
“He’s not allowed to be here,” D’Agostino had told Rothgery in reference to Chronicle-Telegram photographer Bruce Bishop.
“Ma’am, I don’t know who told you that, but they’re allowed to be here,” Rothgery said.
The jury was let out of the courtroom and returned a short time later.
A fire alarm then went off and the entire building was emptied.
The trial resumed about 30 minutes after the alarm sounded.
The trial was also disrupted this morning when cell phones belonging to two spectators rang.
The disruptions occurred as the jury heard from the defendant about the day she shot Steven Augustus.
D’Agostino testified that Augustus awoke in a rage because she had left a TV on overnight when she went to sleep.
He said, “I’ll fix you,” and removed cable cords from all televisions and shut off the electrical breakers in the house before taking a shower, D’Agostino testified.
D’Agostino said she locked herself in a bedroom and said Augustus removed the lock and opened the door.
“He was saying, ‘I’m coming to get you, I’m coming to get you, I’m going to kick your (expletive) (expletive) like I’ve never before.
“I ran under the bed, grabbed my gun and went to the farthest part of the room … I knew that when he was in a rage like this I was going to get my (expletive) kicked.”
When he opened the door, she said she saw the hammer raised in his hand.
“I thought, ‘Oh, my god.’ I closed my eyes and I shot him,” she said.