Video shows melee before Madie Hart's death

Posted at 6:17 PM, Feb 07, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-07 21:27:15-05

CINCINNATI -- Jurors got a look at the fight that broke out before Madie Hart's death during the first day of her accused killer's trial. 

Briana Benson, 20, is facing charges of murder and other crimes in Hart's death. Authorities said she intentionally struck the 18-year-old with her car on Walnut Street last March. Hart was dragged about a block and died in a hospital after four days in a coma.

Prosecutors showed videos from bar security cameras and bystanders' Snapchat of a large fight involving friends of Hart and Benson right in front of two Walnut Street bars after a night of underage drinking. The two stepped in to support their friends.

The videos show Hart's friend Anna Castano fighting with a young woman named Maya. The two had been disputing for weeks. Castano even got a restraining order. But then the two groups met Downtown, and a melee broke out.

Authorities previously said Hart banged on the passenger side door and front of Benson's car. Benson reversed and turned right before running over Hart as she was walking away, they said. 

Castano testified on the first day of the trial. 

"I look around and I don't see Madie, and I start yelling her name, 'Madie, Madie,' and I don't see her," Castano said. "And then two girls I didn't know told me that, 'We think your friend just got hit.'"

The prosecutor equated it to road rage. Benson's defense attorneys emphasized Hart pounding on the car, saying she had wanted to continue fighting but got caught under the car.

"I see Madie, she's laying there," Castano said. "Her eyes are open, but she's not moving, she's not talking. Her eyes are fixed in a spot. There's blood, a lot of blood."