A Knox County jury was scheduled to resume its deliberations Friday, March 12 in the trial of a 68-year-old Matinicus lobsterman and his 45-year-old daughter for a shooting last summer on the island.

The 12-member jury deliberated for three-and-a-half hours March 11 before asking presiding Justice Jeffrey Hjelm if it could recess for the evening and resume at 8:30 a.m. Friday, March 12 in Knox County Superior Court.

The fourth day of the trial of Edwin Vance Bunker and Janan Miller was taken up by testimony by Bunker and then closing arguments by the defense attorneys and District Attorney Geoffrey Rushlau.

Bunker is charged with two counts of elevated aggravated assault for shooting fellow lobsterman Christopher Young of Owls Head, and criminal threatening and reckless conduct for the event that occurred July 20 on Steamboat Wharf on Matinicus. His  daughter Janan Miller is charged with reckless conduct during the same incident.

In testimony March 11, Bunker recounted the events on the dock that day last summer.

“I didn’t have any choice. It was me or them or my daughter,” Bunker said about why he fired two shots from a nine-shot revolver. One of the shots came close to striking Weston Ames and the second struck Young in the neck.

Bunker said when he fired the first shot, which he claimed was not aimed at anyone, it did not faze Young. He also said that while holding onto the shotgun Miller had brought to the dock, Young lunged at both Bunker and his daughter.

Bunker also said he was afraid that either he or his daughter would be killed. He said he was afraid of the two because of how they had been acting and because he was aware of their criminal past, pointing out that Ames was a convicted felon.

Rushlau got Bunker to acknowledge that he had given Young a ride in his airplane a few weeks earlier and that he had suggested to Ames that he run for assessor on the island. Bunker said he simply told Ames he could run. He said there are only about 25 people on the island during the winter and the citizens vote for assessor. Bunker said he did not vote for Ames.

Bunker is represented by attorney Philip Cohen of Waldoboro. Miller is represented by attorney William Avantaggio.

Miller had brought the shotgun to the wharf after she saw Ames and Young waiting for her husband, Alan Miller, at the dock as he was coming into the harbor in his lobsterboat. Unbeknownst to the two defendants, Marine Patrol Officer Wesley Dean was aboard Alan Miller’s boat. Dean, however, did not make his presence known until after the shooting. He said he was attempting to hear whether threats were going to be made but acknowledged in his testimony March 8 that it was difficult to hear because of the engine noise.

Rushlau repeatedly pointed out that Ames and Young had no weapons on the day of the shooting. He said Miller bringing the shotgun to the scene created the situation.

During the three-and-a-half hours of deliberations by the jury Bunker and Miller waited in one of the rooms on the second floor of the courthouse.

Friday, March 12 is a state government shutdown day but the courts will not be affected.