by: Carl Willis Updated:
GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. - A man accused of murder three years ago, has had his name cleared.
Anthony Banks had been in jail since the 2014 killing of Terrance Robinson outside of Tailgators Sports Bar.
It only took the jury 2 1/2 hours to reach its verdict Thursday.
But the decision is not being met as good news by everyone.
"I just put my head down and just started crying," said Toni Robinson, wife of victim Terrance Robinson.
Robinson sat in court when Banks was cleared of murdering her husband.
"It’s something that can't be explained. My heart and my tears can tell it, but I can't get the words to actually tell how I feel. I mean really? Really? Not guilty?" Robinson told Channel 2’s Carl Willis.
"The outcome is what it should have been," Banks’ attorney, Don Geary, said.
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Geary had served as standby counsel as Banks represented himself in court until last Friday when Banks decided Geary should present his defense in the trial that would begin Monday.
But with just two days to prepare, Geary keyed in on issues with the evidence, saying the angle of the gunshot suggests someone else shot the victim.
Geary believes it was the victim's friend who pulled a gun on Banks.
"He thought the guy was going to put a hand in his face. And he just said I wasn't going to let him put a hand in his in my face. I just slapped his hand. When he slapped his hand, it (the gun) went off," Geary said.
Geary told Willis that the state's star witness had her back to the shooting. He used video to prove it.
"From the video, it was clear that she didn't see what she claimed she saw," Geary told Willis.
But prosecutors say any doubt in the case was in part due to Banks' switching stories.
"Testimony revealed that, pretrial, Anthony Banks gave differing accounts about the incident, none of which matched his testimony during trial,” Gwinnett County Chief Assistant District Attorney Dan Mayfield said in a statement.
Now Toni Robinson deals with the fact that Banks will be walking the streets soon.
"I've got to live in the same city with the man walking around the streets who killed my husband," Robinson said.
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