Donaldson testifies in his own murder trial

​HAMILTON COUNTY, Tenn. (WDEF) — On the third day of his trial, the jury heard from Glen Donaldson himself, who is charged with first degree murder.

Donaldson is accused of shooting and killing his son-in law, Adam Levi, in an Ooltewah home in December of 2016. He says Levi was threatening him with a knife and it was in self defense.

Before Donaldson took the stand, the Dr. Steven Cogswell, the assistant chief medical examiner in Hamilton County, described the autopsy report and how close the gun was to the back of Levi’s head.

“This is a close to intermediate range. Close because I am seeing some soot, but not a lot. Intermediate because I am seeing stippling. So we are kind of in that mix,” Dr. Cogswell said.

When Donaldson testified, he says he was talking to Levi about Levi’s struggle with drugs. When he brought up a sensitive family matter, that is when he says Levi got angry.

“And I saw the handle go up and I see the edge and he said I will cut you and I step behind him. I wasn’t that far behind him. I had just walked in there and I pulled, when he told me he was going to cut me, I had a pistol in my vest and I pulled. I didn’t know where I shot. All I remember is the bang and the smell of the smoke,” Donaldson said.

He says he knew Levi was dead.

“His eyes were wide open at the ceiling. Adam was. He was gone. I was scared to death,” Donaldson said.

Lawyers asked why he called his brother first and not 911.

“I don’t know what frame I was in. I don’t know. I wanted to get a hold of my big brother,” Donaldson said.

He was also asked why he didn’t seem concerned when he did call 911.

“I was in shock. I don’t get excited. I stay calm.”

Closing arguments will start Friday morning and then the case will go to the jury.

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