Atty: Prescription Pills Impaired Judgment of Man Accused in Sportscaster Shooting

A defense attorney argues that his client is not guilty of attempting to kill Kyle Kraska because of a “barrage” of prescription medications that impaired his judgment.

A house painter accused of shooting a San Diego-area sports anchor in a dispute over payment was prescribed a “barrage” of medications at the time of the shooting, his attorney said Monday.

Michael Montana is accused of attempted murder for the shooting of his client Kyle Kraska in a Scripps Ranch cul-de-sac in February 2015. 

Kraska, the sports anchor for KFMB-TV, the CBS affiliate in San Diego, had hired Montana to paint his home.  However, Kraska said Montana quit before finishing the work.

On Monday, jurors heard from both sides of the case for the first time as the trial got underway.

Deputy District Attorney Rebecca Zipp said Montana was "calm, cool and collected" while firing multiple rounds at Kraska's silver Mercedes before hiding the weapon.

In a previous court hearing, Kraska testified that Montana walked around his car, firing a gun several times.

“I looked down and saw holes in my clothing. I saw blood,” Kraska testified explaining how he ducked for cover and tried to keep the car between himself and the shooter.

Kraska was eventually able to crawl 50 or 60 feet to another road to flag down someone to help.

Struck by four bullets, Kraska was hospitalized for weeks with injuries to the chest, leg, hip and bicep, according to prosecutors.

Montana has pleaded not guilty. His defense attorney said Montana took prescription drugs for years leading up to the shooting. Those medications made his client incapable of having criminal intent under the law, he said.

“His mental processes were so impacted by all of these medications that he did not form specific intent. That is what this case is about,” the defense attorney said.

Kraska had agreed to pay Montana $2,200 once his house was painted.

Kraska also said he had advanced $800 for supplies to Montana but had refused to give him any more money in advance.

Witnesses were expected to testify throughout the day Monday. See coverage on NBC 7 News beginning at 4 p.m.

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