Murder trial delayed until judge rules on self defense claim

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Dothan (WTVY)-- The trial of a Dothan man accused of murder scheduled to begin Monday will be delayed several months. A judge will, instead, first consider whether the case should be ruled self-defense.

Jeffrey Lloyd Culpepper, 54, was arrested in January for shooting a man described as a longtime acquaintance in the parking lot of a convenience store. 48-year old Cornell Lamont Johnson died at the scene. Investigators say the two men had been arguing.

While police allege murder, Culpepper claims he shot in self-defense. He cites Alabama’s “Stand Your Ground” law that gives a person who feels threatened the reasonable right to protect themselves.

Culpepper is asking Houston County Circuit Judge Kevin Moulton to dismiss the case. A hearing on the motion is set January 3.

Culpepper is free on bond.