One witness to the aftermath of a man's alleged 2014 fatal shooting of his parents in their Sunset Cliffs home testified in court how she heard the shots ring out like firecrackers, and then the words, "he shot her in the chest, I think she's dead."
Peter David Haynes, 23, has previously pleaded not guilty to murder charges in a San Diego courtroom. He is accused of killing his parents, David and Lissa, the day after Thanksgiving 2014.
During his preliminary hearing, witness Courtney Gant testified how she jumped out of bed when she heard the gun shots ring out.
"I heard very clearly, 'He shot her in the chest, I think she's dead,'" Gant testified.
When she was on the phone, calling 911, she heard more shots. That was when her daughter came to her and they stayed together until the police came.
"He was standing outside with a gun...I could clearly see the gun," Gant testified.
Since February 2015, Haynes has been receiving treatment at Patton State Hospital after his defense attorney said he could not understand the charges against him and assist in his own defense. The suspect has been diagnosed with a form of schizophrenia. A court ruled him mentally competent to stand trial.
On Nov. 28, 2014, officers said they found the Haynes’ front door ajar and David and Lissa suffering from multiple gunshot wounds.
Bradford Green, an officer that responded to the scene, testified in court about how officers broke down the door to the Sunset Cliffs home on Nov. 28, 2014, and found the bodies of two people who later turned out to be Lissa and David, in the home. The female victim was face down, Green testified, and "looked like she could not be helped," and the man was still conscious.
The man was on his back, writhing in pain, Green testified, with blood all over his upper body and floor.
"I asked what happened and he said my son shot me...with a glock; his is schizophrenic," testified Green. He later added the man looked like he had been shot several times in the back.
Steven Campman, a forensic pathologist for the County, said Lissa was found with a gunshot wound to her chest, which was her cause of death. Campman testified David was shot six times, including in the abdomen, then again above his hip, and in his back, which disrupted his spinal cord. A doctor testified he suffered nine different wounds, and it is possible he was paralyzed from the chest down.
Lissa and David eventually died shortly after at the hospital.
The house was eventually cleared and they found no shooter, Green testified.
Police say they found Haynes hours later walking near the crime scene with a semi- automatic handgun in his pocket.
His sister, Kimberly, told NBC 7 San Diego Haynes has been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia. Two weeks before her parents’ deaths, she posted a picture to Facebook that showed her brother teaching her how to hold a gun.
Haynes faces two counts of first-degree murder, with special circumstances that hint at premeditation. Prosecutors say Haynes was lying in wait when he shot his parents and that he committed a burglary in the commission of the homicides.