LIVE BLOG: ‘I killed her’ Texas man testifies on his own behalf at Tyler’s trial |


Editor’s Note: Below is a live blog of the legal proceedings in the 241st District Court. Judge Jack Skeen presides over the case. A review of the case can be found below.



ADA Gatewood asks Marshall if he has looked into this case or Fulton’s TDCJ file.

Marshall says no. He knows the basics of Fulton’s past. He also says he focused on lack of criminal history, family stability and being told he had no issues on bail.

Gatewood: Do you plan to testify that Mr. Fulton should be probationed?

Marshall: Maybe


“There would be a very minimal risk of recurrence or recurrence,” Marshall said of Fulton.

His questioning went to the prosecution.

11:51 a.m.

Marshall testifies that Fulton would have several “prosocial” influences if released from prison (i.e. stable income, strong family/friend network).

11:45 a.m.

The defense called Steven Marshall, without the presence of the jury. He worked in California’s corrections and parole system for nearly 28 years.

Now works as a consultant on how electronic monitoring can help parole units in the United States



Daniel’s questioning moved on to ADA Chris Gatewood.

Daniel describes Fulton as a “peaceful” man and he “never saw him lie to me”.

11:21 a.m.

Daniel drove to the scene after Fulton’s wife noticed on a location-sharing app that Fulton hadn’t moved for several minutes.

He said Fulton was “shaken up” while in the back of a police cruiser.

11:13 a.m.

10:50 a.m.

The prosecution focused on when Fulton mentioned seeing a deer during his interrogation.

Fulton’s testimony is over and we’re in a 15-minute recess.


Hodges goes back to the deposition where Fulton marked a spot on a map where he thought he saw a deer. Points out that in the deposition it was a general vicinity, not an exact location.

Hodges: Would you still drink on the same day you know you’re going to be driving?

Fulton: I don’t know if I’ll drink again.

The interrogation was returned to the prosecution.

10:35 a.m.


Chamness spent just over 20 minutes out of the four seconds before the crash. Now let’s move on to Fulton’s time in jail before this retrial for the sentencing phase.


Chamness insists that Fulton only took evasive action less than half a second before impact with Beasley’s car.


Chamness insists an image of the truck appears to show it drifting out of the way before it was physically possible to see an animal where Fulton marked on a map.

Fulton denies this saying he only gave a rough general overview.

10:12 a.m.


Chamness urging Fulton to know if a phone call with his wife was what really distracted him, rather than an animal. Fulton denies being on the phone.



The defense questions Fulton about the hardships his children faced after being convicted of criminally negligent homicide.

He had three sons and a daughter, also named Hailey.

9:45 a.m.

Fulton says he didn’t go to Beasley’s funeral but watched it online. He said if he was in his family’s shoes, he wouldn’t want it either.


Fulton says he thought a deer was on the side of the road and it distracted him. He said he did not recall taking evasive action to avoid Beasley’s car and had no indication he was about to hit it.

9:35 a.m.

9:15 a.m.

Fulton goes through his life journey, including when he briefly taught in the Tyler area and what made him leave the profession for a job in the oil and gas industry.


Judge Jack Skeen calls the court to order. The first witness to take the stand on Monday is James Fulton himself.



TYLER, Texas (KETK) – The re-sentencing trial of a Central Texas man in Tyler for a fatal wreck on Grande Blvd. in 2016 entered its second calendar week.

James Fulton, 46, was convicted of criminally negligent homicide for an accident that killed Haile Beasley, 21, in 2016 and had been sentenced to 10 years in prison, the maximum sentence allowed by Texas law.

Two years later, an appeals court ruled that Fulton received ineffective counsel when his attorneys chose not to present evidence that would have contradicted the testimony of a local waitress. They ordered that the conviction remain in place, but that Fulton receive a new sentencing trial. He has been on bail since August 2019.

In an interview with KETK News in 2019, Beasley’s family opened up about the pain that has always been with them.

“He can just go out and go back to his family, and he can travel to see his kids play baseball or football or whatever, and he can live his life and I can go to the cemetery and visit my kid.


Fulton and Beasley’s cars collided head-on, killing Beasley but leaving Fulton unharmed. The wreckage occurred in a sharp curve between Hollytree Drive and Old Jacksonville Highway.

At the crash site, police did not give Fulton a breathalyzer after his refusal, but administered several sobriety tests. He was allowed to leave the premises when it was determined that he was not intoxicated.

Beasley’s mother, Jennifer Whittmore, highlighted her concern that people think there must be proof that Fulton was drunk to make him guilty. She says he was charged with criminally negligent homicide, not drunk driving. She tells us she believes the evidence of his guilt centers on his negligence that night while driving, which he was ultimately charged with.

“Nothing will bring her back, and nothing ever does, and I’m fully aware of that, but the fact that the punishment matches what he did brings a lot of comfort,” Whittmore said.

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