Surveillance video of the moments before an Uber Eats delivery driver allegedly shot and killed a customer in Buckhead was released Friday.
The video, obtained by Channel 2 Action News, shows the customer, Ryan Thornton, 30, walk up to the car Robert Bivines, 36, was driving Feb. 17, which is followed by shots being fired. Thornton, a Morehouse College graduate, later died at Grady Memorial Hospital.
Jackie Patterson, Bivines’ attorney, told Channel 2 the video proves his client is not guilty.
Bivines was indicted on felony and malice murder charges, and he also faces charges of aggravated assault and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, AJC.com previously reported.
“This video clearly shows this is self-defense,” Patterson said. “And my client was like, ‘Oh, my God. He’s got his hand in his pocket. I’m about to be shot.’”
Atlanta police said Thornton and Bivines argued about how long it took the food to arrive.
Patterson told the news station the video shows an upset Thornton walking toward Bivines’ white Volkswagen Beetle. The video does not include audio.
Thornton is seen grabbing his food and beginning to walk away, but he turns around and says something to Bivines before walking back toward his home. He then turns around again and walks toward the car before being fatally shot.
“And he walks back again to the car with his hand in his pocket saying that, ‘I’m going to (expletive) you up,’” Patterson said. “And that’s when my client shoots him.”
District Attorney Paul Howard sent Channel 2 a statement about the video, which said: “We believe the appropriate body who should determine what the videotape in question depicts is a Fulton County jury and not this defendant.”
About a week after the incident, Bivines turned himself in to police. He had previously been convicted of battery in 2010.
Patterson also said the District Attorney’s Office withheld a lab evidence report for months that showed Thornton’s blood-alcohol content was nearly double the legal limit if he was driving, Channel 2 reported.
Bivines’ trial begins Nov. 13. He remains in the Fulton County Jail without bond, according to records.
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