NEW YORK — One of four youths wounded by subway gunman Bernhard Goetz today exchanged icy stares with his assailant and testified that Goetz shot him and his friends after he asked for $5.
Troy Canty, now 21, left the witness stand to act out both his role and Goetz's in the bloody confrontation on a speeding, graffiti-smeared subway train on Dec. 22, 1984.
Goetz, who became a cult hero to crime victims after the shootings, is on trial for attempted murder and related accounts.
He and Canty exchanged cold glances but no words in what was their first meeting since the shooting. Goetz occasionally smiled wryly as Canty spoke.
Didn't Pay Fares
"We decided we was going to try to get some money," Canty said, describing how he and three companions boarded first a bus and then a subway without paying fares en route from their homes in the Bronx to Manhattan. "We decided to go into Manhattan to break into video machines."
Canty said he saw Goetz board the No. 2 train and decided to ask him for money.
"Mister, can I have $5?" he said he asked. The words previously have been reported as a demand: "Give me $5."
Goetz was standing six to seven feet away from him at the time, Canty said.
"You can all have it," Goetz replied, according to Canty.
Then Goetz turned away from him, unzipped his leather jacket, turned back to Canty and, with their eyes meeting, opened fire at him, Canty said.
"He fired. I grabbed my chest and I went to the floor," Canty said.
Within 10 seconds, three more shots were fired and one stricken youth, Darryl Cabey, cried out, Canty said.
"I heard Darryl Cabey cry, 'Why did he shoot me? Why did he shoot me?' " Canty said.
Cabey, the most seriously injured of the four, is paralyzed below the waist from a bullet that severed his spinal cord.
Could Steal $200 a Day
In detailing his own history, Canty said he had dropped out of school and started stealing from video machines when he was 14 or 15 years old. He typically would jimmy the machines, using a screwdriver, three or four times a week and, on a profitable day, could collect $150 to $200, he said.
He detailed a long criminal record that included numerous misdemeanor convictions but no felony convictions. He also said that by December, 1984, he was smoking crack, a potent cocaine derivative, "pretty much every day," but was not high when the subway confrontation occurred.
Canty, who has been in a drug rehabilitation center for the past two years, told the four-woman, eight-man jury that he was the only one of the four youths to approach Goetz.