Trial Begins For Midland Man Accused of Stabbing Another Man Because of His Race

By Jen Kastner
NewsWest 9

MIDLAND- A man is facing a jury trial this week after being indicted for stabbing another man based on his race. It happened a few days after Christmas of 2011 in the parking lot of Buffalo Wild Wings.

Levi Drone would have normally been in Oklahoma attending college, but he was home in Midland for winter break at the time the incident occurred. Drone reportedly went out to eat some wings with some old friends but it turned into an all out brawl and a stabbing.

In June of 2011, Drew Nickason was indicted for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. The grand jury says it's for cutting and stabbing Drone with a knife and that he did it because of his bias and prejudice against the race of Drone, who is African American.

Drone was the first to take the witness stand in Monday's trial.

Drone tells the jury that he and three friends went to grab some cheap wings at the eatery that night. None of them drank any alcohol at dinner. Then, when leaving to head home, they were confronted by a group of six to eight white men in the parking lot, including Nickason.

Drone tells jurors the large group of men were swearing and using racial slurs like the "n-word" towards Drone and his friends. One from the larger group reportedly cocked and waved a gun around and then Nickason's group instigated a brawl. All the men from Nickason's group took off, except for he and one other.

Drone says he knocked Nickason over to protect his friends and then he ran inside to call for help. After returning to the parking lot, Drone claims Nickason's friend yelled "Heil Hitler." Then, Nickason pulled out a pocket knife which Drone claims had a roughly five-inch long blade. Drone says he tried to keep Nickason away by waving his belt in his face.

In the end, Drone says Nickason slashed him in the left arm. Drone tells jurors he was sure Nickason was aiming at his rib cage.

According to the arrest affidavit, Nickason and his friend tried to flee on foot but were caught by Midland police officers.

The trial will resume Tuesday at 9 a.m.