MIDLAND, Texas — Nearly three years of investigations and court proceedings all came down to 90 minutes of deliberation by a Midland County jury. Ultimately, the jury did find David Wilson not guilty of murdering Midland Police Officer Nathan Hayden Heidelberg.
The trial was described as long, exhausting, tedious and sometimes unnecessary at times by Wilson's attorneys.
Wilson's world was turned upside down the moment he pulled the trigger back in March 2019. Wilson was protecting his home and family the night that Heidelberg was shot. That night changed everything for a man known for his kindness.
"Very dedicated to his family, self-made man who has really worked hard to get where he is. Very religious, very faithful, and very remorseful about what happens. This is not something that he takes lightly, and he’s gonna have to live with this for the rest of his life," Brian Carney, one of Wilson's attorneys, said.
Representing a man accused of murder is no easy task, especially when the attorneys know that their client is not guilty.
"People ask me what’s the hardest part of your job? How do you represent guilty people? And that is not the hardest part. The hardest part is representing people like David Wilson who are innocent, who have not only the law, but the facts on their side as well," Frank Sellers, another of Wilson's attorneys, said.
Regardless of what happens in the justice system, it's the court of public opinion that Wilson must now face.
"David Wilson has gone through the most unimaginable three years. He has lost sleep, he’s been depressed, he won’t go out in public. He won’t even go meet his friends for lunch in Midland. He'll maybe go to Odessa, if he even does that. He won’t go out to dinner with his family," Sellers said.
The message now: the jury has spoken, and they've said that he is not guilty.
"I think after 90 minutes of deliberations, I think it tells us that they disagree very strongly about David Wilson being charged with murder on this case. They spent a lot of time listening to the evidence and seeing a lot of visual and audio evidence that was admitted to them, so it’s relief," Carney said.
Now it's hopefully a new beginning for Wilson, a man exonerated.
There are still lawsuits making their way through the court system filed by both Wilson and the family of Nathan Heidelberg against the alarm system company.