Prosecutors, defense lay out arguments in Kavairlook killing case

FAIRBANKS, Alaska - Yesterday we reported on the start of trial for the man accused of murdering John Kavairlook in 2015.
Rhiannon Walker takes us inside the courtroom in this report.
Rhiannon Walker; Reporting>> Opening arguments were heard Thursday at the start of the trial of Patrick Dale Burton-Hill, accused of murdering John D. Kavairlook Jr. on May 17, 2015 outside Rock N Rodeo Bar.
23-year-old Kavairlook was shot twice in the Walgreen's parking lot after a fight with one of Burton-Hill's friends inside the bar, and then another outside the bar. According to the complaint filed by the Fairbanks Police Department. Kavairlook died after being shot in the head with a 9mm handgun.
Assistant District Attorney David Buettner and defense attorney Jeffrey Saffold showed security footage from outside the Rock N Rodeo, and agreed on the fact that Burton-Hill was in fact the one to pull the trigger.
In Buettner's theory of the events leading up to the shooting, he talked about how Kavairlook, his wife Shalene, and their daughter, as well as a few other friends were having a barbeque, before deciding to go out to the bar.
David Buettner; Assistant District Attorney>>: "They had a barbeque, later that night Michael, Alaina, John, and Shalene decided let's go out, it's a Saturday night. Shalene got her mom to watch the child, and they went out to have a good time, to relax, to enjoy the weekend before going back to their daily duties of parenting and going to work. The night should not have ended like this. So what led to this?"
Rhiannon Walker; Reporting>>: He went on to talk about Burton-Hills decision to accompany friends Demarius Hinson and Joel Joseph, as well as his brother Kelvin Burton, on a weekend trip to Fairbanks.
Buettner said at the bar, a fist fight broke out because Kavairlook believed that Hinson had grabbed his wife. The defense attorney for Burton-Hill says Shalene admitted she hadn't felt anyone touch her.
According to Buettner, after the fight was broken up, both groups were asked to leave, and another fight broke out outside the bar.
Buettner said Burton-Hill, his brother, and Joseph, ran back to their car, and Burton-Hill retrieved the handgun that was there, retuning looking as though he was ready to fight.
According to Buettner, Kavairlook grabbed two fistfuls of rocks and ran towards Burton-Hill and his group. Buettner added that there were a total of 13 shots fired at Kavairlook and said the shooting was not self-defense.
Defense attorney Jeffrey Saffold claimed Buettner left out key details in his argument.
Jeffrey Saffold; Defense Attorney>>: "That is a representative of the State of Alaska, who is supposed to be up here telling you all the truth about what happened. You have to want the whole story. You should know the whole story. You shouldn't be left with a false impression, by showing little snippets of a video. You ought to be told the whole story."
Rhiannon Walker; Reporting>>: Saffold's arguments detailed the night from Burton-Hills viewpoint, saying that while Kavairlook may have believed his wife was touched, he in fact punched Hinson, the person he believed responsible, four or five times.
Saffold said that according to witnesses, Kavairlook was belligerent after being escorted out, and was pacing, waiting for Burton-Hill and his group to come out.
Jeffrey Saffold; Defense Attorney>>: "'How come them N's going to be thrown out.' I'm not going to say it, it's too foul. 'How come those N's haven't been thrown out?' Bring them out here. He was waiting outside."
Rhiannon Walker; Reporting>>: In addition to using the derogatory term, Saffold stated that Kavairlook accused the bouncers of ejecting him from the club because he was Native.
Saffold went on to say Kavairlook had two guns in his car, as well as ammunition, and was shot as a result of telling Burton-Hill and his friends, "I have something for you" then running to his car, causing Burton-Hill to believe he had reason to fear for his and his friends lives.
The trial continued today at 8:30 this morning.
This is Rhiannon Walker reporting.