- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 8, 2005

As jurors went through a second day of deliberations yesterday with no verdict in the murder trial of a former U.S. marshal, the victim’s mother took issue with the way her son was portrayed in court.

Ryan T. Stowers, a Navy seaman from Redding, Calif., was killed Oct. 28 after a minor traffic collision with off-duty Deputy Marshal Arthur Lloyd escalated into a fistfight and then gunfire in a shopping center parking lot on Rockville Pike. Prosecutors said Mr. Lloyd shot Seaman Stowers in the back as Seaman Stowers tried to drive away. Mr. Lloyd contended that Seaman Stowers was the aggressor and that he acted in self defense.

Jurors are considering charges including first- and second-degree murder, voluntary manslaughter, reckless endangerment and handgun crimes.

Seaman Stowers’ mother, Tricia, told reporters yesterday that she didn’t believe Mr. Lloyd’s self-defense claim. She also thanked prosecution witnesses.

“Ryan, unfortunately, doesn’t have his day in court,” she said. “Luckily, there were 40 other people standing around who can give a different version than Lloyd’s,” she said.

Mrs. Stowers also took issue with two police officers who testified last week that her son was a troublemaker. One officer said Seaman Stowers cursed and “went berserk” after he was stopped for driving erratically, then revved his engine and came toward the officer. Another testified that he thought Seaman Stowers “was looking for a fight,” when he tried to question him in 2003 about a disturbance at a fast-food restaurant.

However, both acknowledged they had not been hurt and that no charges were brought against Seaman Stowers.

Mrs. Stowers described her son as “cocky” while growing up, but said the two run-ins with the law were taken out of context. She also said her son had to explain them to Navy officials.

“He knew there would be consequences,” she said.

Testimony about Mr. Lloyd’s past, including accusations of assault from his wife, was kept out of court.

Mrs. Stowers also told reporters that her son planned to attend college after getting out of the Navy, showing them photos of him with his family and from his senior prom. Seaman Stowers was buried in his full dress uniform, with his favorite baseball cap, she said.

Mrs. Stowers paused a long time before answering whether a conviction on lesser charges would be good enough. Then she said simply, “I don’t know.”

The jury was to resume deliberations this morning.


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