Judge to reconsider self-defense ruling for tow truck driver

RIDGELAND, SC (AP) A judge will hear arguments about whether he should reconsider his ruling that a tow truck driver did not act in self-defense when he killed a man on Christmas Eve 2010.

Circuit Judge Markley Dennis Jr. ruled against Preston Oates last week, refusing to dismiss a manslaughter charge. But the judge agreed to reconsider his ruling at a Tuesday hearing.

Under state law, self-defense shields people from prosecution when defending themselves in their homes, workplace or vehicles.

Oates' attorneys argued their client was enforcing parking regulations in Bluffton when forced out of his truck by 34-year-old Carlos Olivera, who threatened him, revealing a loaded handgun in a parking dispute.

But prosecutors told the judge the argument was over and the victim was walking away when Olivera was shot five times.

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