Trigger warning: gun violence, death
Markeith Loyd, who is facing the death penalty for killing his pregnant ex-girlfriend, claims that "of course" he is the victim. The Florida man said he was in "warrior mode" when he shot Sade Dixon eight times, killing her and their unborn child, the Orlando Sentinel reported.
On Monday, Loyd, 44, told jurors at the Orange County Courthouse that he never intended to shoot Dixon but began shooting in self-defense because he was attacked by Dixon's older brother Ronald Stewart. "You're really the victim today here, aren't you?" Assistant State Attorney Ric Ridgeway asked Loyd on Tuesday. "Of course," he replied. "I wanted my child. I never meant to kill my queen."
Loyd also testified that he had received a text from Dixon after their relationship ended that read, "Don't expect no baby." Then, on the night of December 13, 2016, he drove to Dixon's home to convince her not to terminate the pregnancy. He claims that she then pulled a gun on him but he managed to take it away from her and store it with his other guns.
When Stewart came out of the home, the two men began arguing. Afterward, police say Loyd shot Dixon and Stewart as they walked back into the home. Loyd's defense attorney claims Stewart attacked Loyd, and the gun accidentally went off, hitting Stewart. Loyd testified that he believed Dixon had taken one of his guns, which sent him into "defense mode" so he kept shooting at her, according to the Sentinel.
Under cross-examination, Loyd said that when he arrived at his ex-girlfriend’s home, he admitted that he had just had sex with another woman, Fox 35 reported. He claims this caused Dixon to become upset and get her gun from her bedroom. Loyd said when Dixon tried to throw the gun at him, he thought she was going to shoot him, so he fired back. When asked if he was aiming for her, he said "yes."
Stewart, a computer engineer, had testified that he never attacked Loyd. He said he had been working in his home office when Loyd arrived at the home. After he heard a loud noise, he went outside to find Loyd fighting with his sister. He said he asked Loyd to leave, but he refused. Then, his sister ran to the door and began banging, which is when he said he saw Loyd pull out a gun and begin firing.
"He hit me twice in the leg, and he was aiming for my heart," Stewart said. "He kept on shooting her."
Closing arguments in the trial are scheduled to begin today after Loyd's defense attorneys rested their case yesterday. Loyd is also facing the death penalty in the murder of Orlando police Lt. Debra Clayton, who was shot dead while she was trying to arrest him in January 2017. His trial in that murder case is set for next year, according to the Sentinel.