Billy Joe Shaver News: Self Defense/There was a Knife

AUSTIN — A man shot and wounded by country singer Billy Joe Shaver outside a bar has told police the attack was unprovoked, an account that differs from his attorney’s claims of self-defense.

One witness said Shaver followed the victim, Billy B. Coker, 50, out of Papa Joe’s Texas Saloon in Lorena on Saturday night and asked, “Where do you want it?” before shooting him in the face, according to an arrest warrant affidavit.

Another witness said that after hearing gunfire, she went outside and heard Shaver say to Coker, “Tell me you are sorry,” and “Nobody tells me to shut up,” according to the affidavit signed by acting Lorena Police Chief John Moran.

Coker told police that he and Shaver had been talking inside for an hour or more and discovered that Shaver’s wife was the widow of Coker’s cousin. Coker said Shaver later asked him to go outside and then said, “Where do you want it?” before shooting him in an unprovoked attack, according to the affidavit.

Coker was released Tuesday from a Waco hospital.

Shaver’s attorney Joseph A. Turner has said Coker was drunk, aggressive and had a knife and that he followed Shaver outside. Turner said that while witness accounts in any incident will differ somewhat, especially when people have been drinking, he is surprised that the documents do not mention the knife.

“Clearly the witnesses did not see the whole thing if they didn’t see the knife,” Turner told the Associated Press today.

On Tuesday afternoon Shaver surrendered at the McLennan County Jail in Waco and posted $50,000 bond. Shaver, 67, of Waco is charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and unlawfully carrying a handgun on the premises of a business with a license to sell alcohol for on-premises consumption.

Shaver has a concealed handgun license, but guns are not allowed in businesses that sell alcohol, Moran said.

Just hours after turning himself in and posting bond, Shaver entertained about 200 fans with songs from his just-released “Greatest Hits” album.

At the close of Tuesday night’s half-hour set at Waterloo Records, Shaver told the crowd: “Don’t forget to pray for me, and tell your kids to pray for me, too.”

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