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Opening Statements

Were the injuries suffered by Wal-Mart cashier Grace Suozzi on Christmas Eve the result of a vicious, deliberate closed fist punch or an unfortunate accident?

The case against 27-year-old Jaquetta Simmons will come down to the jury’s belief in one of those two scenarios.
Assistant Prosecutor Melissa Cianfrini said 70-year-old Grace’s Suozzi’s life changed forever last December 24th. 
Grace was brutally assaulted, Cianfrini said, because she made a simple request – she asked for a receipt.
Defense Lawyer Ann Nichols said there is no disputing that Grace Suozzi was injured by a blow to the face. 
She said Jaquetta Simmons life also changed forever.
The injury suffered by Grace Suozzi  Nichols said, was a completely unintended consequence of trying to break free from the hold of another person.
Nichols maintains a woman, yet to be identified, wearing a Maroon shirt and blue skirt, had a hold on Simmons and while trying to break free of that hold, Grace Suozzi was accidentally punched, and suffered several facial fractues.
 
Video Shown
 
Late this morning the 10 women and two men on the jury saw the first surveillance video of the incident in Wal-Mart on Christmas Eve day.
The video that was shown this morning shows only a portion of what went on at Grace Suozzi’s cash register.
The camera angle is far off to the left side of the action.
It is fuzzy.
It does show Grace Suozzi being hit and knocked off her feet.
It also shows the un-named woman in the maroon shirt and blue skirt – but it does not – at least from the angle show in court today – show this person having a hold on Simmons that she could have broken away from and accidentally hit Grace Suozzi in the face.
An exterior surveillance video shows Simmons and her brother leaving Wal-Mart and a group of customers grabbing Simmons key and blocking her car from leaving the parking lot.
Testimony continues in the trial which is expected to last for the rest of this week and possibly into next week.
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