New video shows different angle of possible hit and run before Will Smith shooting

New Exclusive video shows different angle of possible hit-and-run before Will Smith shooting

NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - New video obtained exclusively by FOX 8 News shows a different angle of a possible hit and run that happened just moments before and only a few blocks away from where Will Smith was killed.

In the video, captured by surveillance cameras at Razzle Dazzle Home on Magazine Street near Sophie Wright, you can see what appears to be a Hummer, similar to the car suspected shooter Cardell Hayes was driving Saturday evening, involved in a possible hit and run, when a silver Mercedes SUV seems to tap the rear bumper as the Hummer comes to a stop ahead of traffic on Magazine Street.

The video shows the silver SUV, a vehicle similar to the car Will Smith was driving the night he was killed, pulling around the Hummer as the Hummer tries to pull over. The silver SUV then speeds off down Magazine.

Magazine Street ends in that direction just feet ahead, so drivers would have to travel down Sophie Wright at that point. Surveillance video obtained from the Half Moon Bar shows what appears to be a car similar to Will Smith's silver SUV speed by the bar and then the orange Hummer following closely behind.

The two cars drive out of frame, just feet away from where Will Smith was killed.

However, FOX 8 legal analyst Joe Raspanti thinks the video of the possible hit and run won't play a factor in the defense.

"It can show premeditation, which bumps it from a possible manslaughter, a rage type of thing, to second-degree murder, which is not good for the defendant," he said. "So a prosecutor could use it to their advantage. Either way, it doesn't matter that this happened. Just because Will Smith committed a hit and run doesn't mean he deserves to get gunned down on the streets of New Orleans."

Our partners at | The Times Picayune obtained the scanner traffic of the police response just moments after the shooting. In the audio, you can hear police discussing the scene.

"Complainant says there's a male down with about six gunshot wounds to the chest," said one police dispatcher.

"What's the script on the shooter," another officer asks.

"I think we got the shooter on the scene. We've got one gun recovered on the scene. 10-4. Shoring that up, we've got two black males in custody, with a firearm," responding police said.

In their first press conference following the shooting, police said they confiscated only one weapon, consistent with the scanner traffic heard over the radio Saturday night.

But on Tuesday, after executing a search warrant, police found two additional weapons.

Investigators recovered a revolver from Cardell Hayes' Hummer and a 9-millimeter handgun from Will Smith's Mercedes SUV. Police don't believe either gun was fired and said there is no ballistic evidence to show either gun was used during the incident Saturday night.

The new information is consistent with a witness's statement captured in a Facebook video from the scene Saturday night. In the video the man says, "This guys like, 'get out of here or I have a gun' and then he's like, (expletive) you, I got one too. And then he grabs the gun and he shoots him in the back and he's dead."

"Just because Will Smith says, 'I have a gun' to this guy, if he did say that, does not give this guy the right to gun him down, because if he does, everyone who's in a fender bender in the city of New Orleans and gets out, the other guys mad, he guns you down and says that guy said he had a gun," Raspanti said.

Raspanti thinks the defense only benefits from the gun found in Smith's car if they can prove the gun was in a threatening situation.

"The defense attorney does not have a case. If there's not a gun in Will Smith's car, and what I would say, in Will Smith's hand, because he would not be reasonably, in my opinion, reasonably in fear of his life," Raspanti said.

NOPD went door-to-door Tuesday morning, gathering video of the two cars along the path they traveled, similar to the footage obtained by FOX 8 on Monday and Tuesday.

But Raspanti doesn't think that surveillance video will affect the investigation.

"It may influence manslaughter versus second-degree murder, but the issue is, in the ten seconds before those gun shots were fired, what was his state of mind? Did he feel like Will Smith was about to kill him? Because that's the only way he gets to shoot Will Smith," Raspanti said.

Cardell Hayes is expected back in court for a preliminary hearing on April 28.

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