The trial of a Havre man accused of causing permanent injury to a Big Sandy resident in a fight outside of a Havre tavern in April 23 is expected to wrap up today, with defendant Kenneth Erickson taking the stand in his own defense.
Erickson, born in 1961, is charged with a felony count of aggravated assault for striking Gene Johnson April 23, 2011, causing Johnson to fall to the ground. Johnson struck his head on the pavement and suffered a fractured skull, requiring surgery and a week in intensive care.
Prosecuting attorney Gina Dahl, Hill County attorney, said in her opening arguments that Johnson likely will never fully recover.
Erickson, an employee of E-1 Towing, owned by Dale Erickson, has maintained from the start that Johnson started the altercation, threatening him and shoving him, and that he acted in self defense.