MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Matthew Shashy's federal trial is underway this week. He's charged with reportedly interfering, impeding and intimidating military officers at Maxwell Air Force Base in January.
Shashy was arrested on three state terrorism charges for painting graffiti at three locations on Dec. 3 and indicted on one federal count for reportedly firing three shots at Montgomery's military installation.
In opening statements, Assistant U.S. Attorney Todd Brown explained to the 14 jurors that Shashy used a deadly weapon to interfere and intimidate federal officers at a military installation.
"After he didn't get the attention he felt like he deserved, the defendant pulls out a shotgun, points it toward Maxwell Air Force Base and all hell breaks loose," Brown said to the jurors.
Defense attorney Tommy Goggans argued this case shouldn't have "gone federal."
"Matthew thought the government was after him," Goggans said in opening statements. "He thought the government was out for his family, they were poisoning his food, had cameras in his house watching everything he did."
Goggans said the intent of Shashy's actions was not assault, but that others needed to be warned of government intrusion.
Witnesses described the graffiti, described as anti-government, that stated, "kill the slavers" and, "kill the zionist (sic) slavers secret society secret police extortionists." This graffiti was found on two entrances to the State Capitol, outside MPD Headquarters, and the Day Street entrance to Maxwell Air Force Base.
A witness testified she pulled up beside Shashy, who was in the turn lane to go into the military installation. She said he pulled out a shotgun, fired three shots into the ground in the direction of the guard shack, and then got back in the car. When the light turned green, he didn't accelerate, filing in behind her in traffic and driving away from the base. The witness said she was terrified, and now carries a gun.
Another witness testified they also saw Shashy get outside the truck and fire the shots. This witness got out his gun and attempted to catch Shashy in traffic to get his car tag. Instead, Shashy slammed on his breaks while driving onto Interstate 85, and the witness slammed into the back of Shashy's truck, and Shashy fled the scene.
Members of the military who were working in the guard shack at the Day Street entrance said Maxwell AFB went into protection mode to defend the base after the shots were fired, ramping up security, adding an automatic rifle to their weaponry, helmets and armor plates on top of Kevlar vests.
A hostage negotiator testified Shashy called 911, wanting to speak with someone at MPD. An officer made contact, and Shashy said he was, "involved in a peaceful protest that he stepped up today," referring to the shots fired outside the military base.
The testimony also revealed Shashy felt the CIA gave him HPV by touching a door knob, the CIA had prostitute spies and the CIA communicated with him through the media. The negotiations went on for about 12 hours, as Shashy grew reluctant and even heated at times, saying, "He had a bullet for every officer outside his house." The witness testified Shashy had weapons at arm's reach, and his parents were also inside the house. Brown read from the transcript, where Shashy told the negotiator he would not disarm, and if police came inside the house, "he would match their escalation".
Eventually Shashy demanded a written agreement with the city, which was shown in court. The document had three points, which explained the demands of what Shashy would and would not do, and it was signed by the Montgomery Police Chief.
Shashy accepted the agreement, and turned himself over to police peacefully.
Defense attorney Susan James described Shashy's beliefs at the time of the incidents as anti-government, and anti-government corruption.
The government offered a plea deal in this case, which was announced on the record at the beginning of the court proceeding.
The government is expected to rest their case on Tuesday, and the defense will present around 5-6 witnesses