Radau: Deadly fight was over money, drugs, prostitution

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - Accused murderer Jeremy Radau told a jury an argument over money, drugs and prostitution lead to the death of 74-year-old Charles Pickell.

Radau took the stand in his defense Wednesday and admitted he hit Pickell in the head several times with a bat.

"I just kept hitting him until he stopped moving," Radau said.

Radau seemed to show no remorse as he explained to the courtroom what happened September 19th, 2009.

Radau claimed his girlfriend at the time, Megan Kinberger, wanted Xanax, so the couple went to Pickell's apartment. While there Radau said he offered to prostitute Kinberger out to Pickell.

"He didn't have the price I wanted," Radau said. "I wanted $240, but he only had $140."

That is when Radau claimed all three of them got into an argument and Pickell picked up a bat and swung it at Radau.

"I caught it, I hit him and he fell back on the chair like this," Radau explained as he made the motions with his hand. "I hit him again. I didn't want him to sit back up, so I tried to sustain him again. He tried to get up a the third time, so I hit him again. I blacked out from then and kept hitting him until he stopped moving."

Assistant District Attorney Scott Lusk asked the defendant, "This 74-year-old man with scoliosis, arthritis of the back, decides he's going to take a swing at you with a baseball bat. Is that what you are telling us?"

The prosecution told the jury Radau hit Pickell seven times in the head and five times in the arm.

Lusk put his hand over his head and asked, "You don't think an old man doing this means enough."

Radau responded, "Obviously not, I was just trying to get him to stop."

Radau admitted he took the bat from Pickell's apartment. Lusk asked Radau to show the court how he stuffed the bat in his pants to leave the apartment. Radau's attorney objected and asked if Radau could be seated, but Radau said, "I don't mind showing him."

Judge Roger Clark then demanded, "Alright Mr. Lusk, get that bat away from him."

After the unusual demonstration, the prosecution chipped away at Radau's claims of self defense and got this admission from the defendant.

"It's my fault he's dead," Radau said.

Both sides in the case have rested and Thursday morning the jury will begin deliberating. If found guilty of capital murder, Radau could be sentenced to death.

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