Nathan Lalone Denies Involvement In Christian Sosa Murder

Wednesday, June 4, 2014 - by Hollie Webb

On trial for the 2011 murder of Christian Sosa, Nathan Lalone said in a police statement taken shortly after the homicide that he had nothing to do with the shooting. 

The police interrogation tape was played for the jury Wednesday morning. In the tape, Lalone said that his friends Blakelen "Blake" Adams and Tyler Conrad had been the ones discussing harming Mr. Sosa. 

According to the state, 19-year-old Christian Sosa and his girlfriend Meghan Bennett drove to the Apison Park tennis courts to meet with Tyler Conrad and "do some drugs" on Nov. 11, 2011. 

However, when they arrived in Ms. Bennett's car, someone immediately started shooting at the passenger's side door, killing Sosa almost instantly. Ms. Bennett was also shot twice, but managed to drive the car away.  

In Lalone's police interview, he said that he was angry at the victim at the time because he had stolen one of the defendant's guns. Still, Lalone said in 2011, "I never wished death upon him for stealing my gun."

He said of Adams and Conrad, "They're trying to put this on me because they're best friends." At that time, Adams and Conrad had both been charged with conspiracy to commit murder. However, charges against Adams have been dismissed and Conrad passed away in 2013. 

Lalone described Conrad as a "junkie" who had formerly lived in a "halfway house in Alabama."

Adams testified as a witness on Wednesday morning. He admitted that before his original police interview, he had taken multiple pills of the anti-anxiety medication Klonopin, a benzodiazepine.  

During his interrogation, he also said he did not kill Sosa. He said he had not seen him in "months and months and months."

On the video, he also called Sosa "retarded" and said the victim was "always walking around with guns." 

Two TBI agents also testified as witnesses. They said that no blood or gunshot residue was found on the items collected and identified as belonging to Lalone. 

When questioned by defense attorney Kevin Loper, Special Agent Gregory Fort said that the hands and clothing of Adams and Conrad had not been swabbed. 

Late Wednesday, a friend of the young men, Sabrina Lovett, was called in as a witness. Ms. Lovett said she had been hanging out with Adams, Conrad, and Lalone earlier on the day of the murder. She said she also saw Lalone after the incident. 

Ms. Lovett said, "He said he 'hit him in the dome' or somebody 'hit him in the dome' or he 'wanted to go home.' I think it was that he 'hit him in the dome.'" 

However, she said earlier that day, Adams, not the defendant, had a confrontation with Sosa at a gas station. She described him as seeming to be angry after that. 

In Ms. Lovett's original police tape, she hesitated to talk at first because she was afraid of "ratting out" the others. She said she had sworn not to talk.  

Once she started talking, she described multiple conversations that day between the four of them where Adams and Lalone both spoke about wanting to kill Sosa. 

Particularly, she said Lalone said Sosa needed to "get what he deserves." She said in the original interview that she did not think that Lalone would go through with it.  

She said finally he got angry enough that he decided to go by himself. She said that she went with Adams and Conrad to Walmart to get a receipt to prove that they were not involved in the shooting. 

While there, she said Conrad called Sosa to get him to Apison Park where Lalone was waiting. 

On the 2011 recording, she described Lalone, "He's not that type of person at all. I don't know what got into him."

She said they all had sworn not to tell, but she changed her mind after she thought Adams was "ratting her out."  

The trial will continue Thursday. 

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