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Man on trial for 2007 stabbing death

By Linda Looney-Bond

lbond@news-daily.com

Antonio Bernard Rome, of College Park, told police during a videotaped interviewed in 2007 that he stabbed his lover to death, because he thought the man was going to hit him with a flower pot.

The interview with police was played in Clayton County Superior Court, where Rome, 26, is on trial in the slaying of Tommy Dayshawn Crooks.

Testimony in the trial began Tuesday, before Superior Court Judge Geronda Carter.

The incident occurred in September of 2007, at 5966 Friar Court, in College Park, while Rome was house-sitting for a friend, according to testimony in the case.

"I met him [Crooks] on a chat line," Rome told Clayton County Police during the videotaped interview played in court on Tuesday. "We've been together a year and a half, off and on," he said.

Rome also told police, on the tape, that the two had been drinking "Hennesey," watching television, and having sex. He later said that, while they watching a movie, Crooks wanted to have sex again, but that he refused.

Rome said Crooks kept "aggravating" him, and playfully hitting him, but the playful hitting eventually turned more serious.

Later, Rome said, as he and Crooks were leaving the house, Crooks picked up a flower pot outside and raised it above his head, as if he intended to hit Rome with it.

Rome said he then pulled a knife from his pocket and stabbed Crooks. "He like bent down on his knees," Rome told police. "He like dropped down." Rome then told police, in the taped interview, that's when he fled the scene.

A neighbor called 911, and Crooks later died at a local hospital, according to police testimony in the case. And Rome was arrested sometime later.

Testimony is scheduled to continue today.