A bouncer at a Blenheim bar agreed she might have been mistaken about her recollection of the way the bar manager was carrying a man who died after being removed from the premises.
The Crown alleges bar manager Kevin King, 52, put Matthew Heagney in a headlock which left him in semi-conscious and unable to break his fall when he was dropped.
King rejects the claim that he held Mr Heagney, 24, in a way that rendered him unconscious or semi-conscious.
In a retrial before Justice Stephen Kos and a jury in the High Court at Wellington, King denies the manslaughter of Mr Heagney in the early hours of August 23, 2009.
Marlborough District Council closed circuit television footage shows Mr Heagney being taken outside Shapeshifters Bar in Blenheim about 2.50am.
Dewy Zuidema told the court she was working as a door person at the bar and helped King and another staff member remove Mr Heagney from the premises.
She had heard a kerfuffle at the foyer just inside the front door of the bar and saw King against a wall holding Mr Heagney in a headlock. They were crouched down, with Mr Heagney lying on the ground, she said.
Asked by prosecutor Mark O'Donoghue about the headlock, she indicated an arm was around Mr Heagney's neck with his head in the V of the elbow.
Mr Heagney was not struggling or physically resisting, she said.
She could not recall seeing any of Mr Heagney's limbs moving at the time, and could not hear him say anything.
She helped to take Mr Heagney outside, picking up his legs and moving backwards toward the door, with King at the other end.
Mr Heagney's legs had been hanging like a bag of potatoes, his face was pale and his eyes were dazed.
The door to the street had been closed and she dropped one of Mr Heagney's legs so she could open the door, which was quite heavy and opened inwards.
She hit her arm on a lock on the door, hurting herself, then used her bottom to keep the door open, before probably pushing her way through people gathered outside.
Ms Zuidema said she slightly tripped on a step as she moved backwards, affecting her balance and hurting her back, which had already been sore.
At some point she had let go of Mr Heagney's leg or legs because it was time to.
King had still been holding Mr Heagney at that point. Heagney was dropped to the ground, with the back of his head hitting the ground with a loud crack, she said. She checked Mr Heagney's head and moved him on to his side to the recovery position.
Cross-examined by defence counsel Greg King, Ms Zuidema said her memory was that King was holding Mr Heagney in a headlock at the time he came out the door.
But asked whether she might be mistaken and that the defendant might have been holding Mr Heagney around the chest at that stage, she said he could have been.
Mr King asked Ms Zuidema whether the defendant released Mr Heagney at the same time, or before or after she did. Ms Zuidema said she remembered releasing him first.
She agreed she had been deeply concerned that she could be blamed for having a role in Mr Heagney's death.
Mr King said he was suggesting Ms Zuidema was trying to distance herself from any blame for what happened. Ms Zuidema said she was just telling him what she could remember. Fairfax NZ
- The Marlborough Express