BARNSTABLE, Mass. — In the first day of hearing testimony in the murder trial of Thomas Latanowich, the jury was shown graphic video of the crime scene.
On April 12, 2018, Yarmouth Police K9 Officer Sean Gannon was shot and killed, and his K9 Nero seriously wounded, when police tried to arrest Latanowich on a warrant at a Barnstable house.
Officer Gannon was fatally shot after he climbed a ladder and tried to enter the attic where Latanowich was hiding.
The video reveals a clutter-filled house in disarray. There is a large pool of blood just inside the front door threshold. In what appears to be a child’s bedroom, a blood stained ladder stands in a closet. The ladder leads to the attic space. The video also reveals the attic and insulation where Latanowich was hiding. At one point in the video, Officer Gannon’s K9 Police vest is seen lying on the kitchen floor.
The video was shown to the jury on the first day of opening statements and witness testimony.
Prosecutor Michael Trudeau said Latanowich ignored police calls to surrender, and that responding police warned Latanowich that police would search the house with a K9.
Trudeau described the moment Officer Gannon was shot.
“The officers will tell you that Officer Gannon reached up to pull that piece of insulation down. And as soon as he pulled that insulation down, they heard a pop. And they observed Officer Gannon fall face first on the insulation in the attic,” Trudeau said.
Latanowich’s defense attorney, Joseph Krowski, urged jurors to keep an open mind.
Krowski argued this is a case of self defense, and that Latanowich did not know the police were in his house. According to Krowski, Latanowich thought someone else was trying to kill him.
“There will be no evidence presented by the Commonwealth that Thomas Latanowich knew it was a police officer, or had the specific intent to kill a police officer or ever premeditated the killing of a police officer,” Krowski said.
Testimny will resume on Monday morning.
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