Monday, September 15, 2008

The Prosecutor's Case .. Concluded

Remember the defense even put an exhibit in. I might have it over there. That's all right. I'll move on.
The defense put an exhibit in. I wrote it in my notes here. D7Q. It was a map of these alleged witness sightings. And I think it included Tony Freitas, and Grace Wolf, and Homer Maldonado. I'm pretty sure those were the people. If I'm wrong, just look at the testimony, look at the map itself.
Not a single one came in to testify. Why do you think that was? This is a very experienced defense team. They are very good lawyers. They obviously know how to prove facts if they want to. Why do you think they didn't bring in a single witness to testify that they saw Laci Peterson walking that day? Remember, you heard a bunch of evidence about Tom Harshman. Remember that whole thing with the fence, and the woman urinating, and the van, and all that crazy story? How come Tom Harshman didn't get up here on the stand? Let's hear what he has to say if that's true. None of those people came in and testified. You know why?
You can assume because that what they were going to say was not credible, that's why.
Remember Investigator Bertalotto was asked about a guy named Chris Clark.
Remember Chris Clark? He didn't contact the police until April, 2004. He didn't know Laci Peterson. He never spoke to her. He said he saw her while he was working in the neighborhood. He said he knew this from his time in treatment for substance abuse. His problems obviously continued, because in 2004 he was under house arrest for his third DUI.
I'm not beating up on anybody with a substance abuse problem. Far from it. But it's not right to ask about hearsay evidence in this trial and not put this witness on the stand. How come this witness wasn't called to the stand? The investigator testified just back in April he went out to his house and talked to him. He is certainly available. Why didn't we hear from him? We didn't hear from him because obviously his story was not credible, that's why.
And, finally, let's talk about the law of the case. Like I told you, murder is an unlawful killing of a human being. In this case there is two humans involved, Laci and Conner.
First degree requires premeditation, which I have talked to you about. Second degree requires no premeditation. Still requires malice. You still have to have specific mental intent to kill somebody.
Malice, actually there is two types. There is express, which means I'm going to kill, and I do it, but I don't really think about it. If you really think about it, that's going to fall into first degree and premed.
Implied malice means you do an act that's so dangerous that the law implies malice. Put a bag over somebody's head, hold it shut, even in your mind you don't mean to kill them. Kind of an, kind of a hard example, hard concept to grasp. That would probably be implied malice.
Here, of course, there is lots of evidence of premeditation

None is lots?

The planning


the boat purchase


the researching on the internet,


all of the equipment that he bought to make

What equipment?

the making the anchors.

No proof of this was offered.

Lot of evidence here that the defendant premeditated this crime.

Zero is lots?

Finally in this case, as we have said from day one, it's a circumstantial evidence case. I want to talk to you about that real briefly.
What does circumstantial evidence mean? When you all came here, we kind of gave you those kinds of silly examples. You know, footsteps in the snow. Somebody obviously walked across the snow. A kid who standing outside of a pool and he's dripping wet, there is footsteps leading from the pool to him wet, it's good evidence, circumstantial evidence that he had been swimming in the pool, that kind of thing.
But how do analyze it in terms of a case like this? I think the best way to look at it is like a jigsaw puzzle. That's how you look at a crime like this. That's how you solve a crime like this. Like a jigsaw puzzle. Take each piece of evidence, and you look at it, and you'd see where it fits with everything else. And, you know what? Look at this evidence very critically. I welcome that, because you are going to see that the interpretations that I believe is going to be argued to you tomorrow are not reasonable, and they don't fit when you compare them with something else, some of the examples I have already given you.
Let's take a jigsaw puzzle of the Golden Gate Bridge. This is one I like. Take a blue piece. Well, the blue piece could be water, could be sky, it could be a car driving the across the bridge, right? Well, does that mean we take the blue piece because it can be these other things and throw it away? Of course not.
You put it in the puzzle where it needs to go.
Take an orange piece. Could be a sunset. Could be a piece of the bridge. Does that mean we just take it and throw it away? We look at each one in order. If we throw everything away, that's not the way we do it. Of course not.
We take the piece, you see where it fits with the other pieces. You know what pretty soon you put those pieces together and, you know, you got a bridge. Even if some of the pieces, you don't think, you personally don't think fit, you are still going to see what the puzzle is made of.
That's exactly what we have here. Each piece that I have talked to you about today fits only in one direction, and that's that this man is guilty of murder.

When a prosecutor talks about 'jigsaw puzzles', it is a sure sign that he doesn't have the evidence to make his case and he is now inviting the jury to use the rankest form of speculation and character assassination to reach a verdict. This is a "win at any costs" appeal. If he had real evidence he would show, coldly and logically, how every piece can only be interpreted in a light to show the defendant as guilty. In this case every single piece of evidence has a reasonable explanation and therefore must be excluded. It is not even the case that a couple of pieces need to be viewed in a light that goes to guilt. EVERY PIECE must be viewed in that light, and the jury is still required to ignore solid evidence of the defendant's innocence. This is reverse jury nullification - another word for this is a lynching. All that was offered was Distaso’s speculations. Where was the evidence?

Circumstantial evidence, you know, look at these things like this. Is it a coincidence that the bodies were in the exact same area where the defendant went fishing?

What proof have you that it was not a coincidence? Or malice by another?

Is it a coincidence that the defendant was lying about being in Paris and Europe, and not?

Men lie for sex.

Is it a coincidence that he wanted to sell Laci's house, her furniture, her car?

It was a very reasonable decision.

Is it a coincidence he lied about the affair?

Men lie for sex.

How many of these coincidences does the defense want you to swallow and have you still call yourselves reasonable people?

So far there is only one coincidence and it may not even be that.

If the explanation for all of these facts taken together is not reasonable as defense is trying to present, you must reject it.

Distaso is the one with the unreasonable hypothesis with no facts to back it up.

If the evidence as we present, as I have argued it today, is reasonable, you must accept it and find this man guilty of the murder of his wife and son.I thank you very much for your time. And I thank you for your time throughout this whole case.

And thus ends one of the most shameful cases in Californian history, a case so polluted with prejudice that it may become the exemplar of that, superseding even the conviction of Dr. Sam Sheppard. Even the most hate filled commentators admit that this case will be overturned, but before that Scott Peterson will have served as much time as actual murderers, such as Gilbert Cano who did kill his unborn child and girl friend. What a disgrace to California. $11 million spent and still no evidence of guilt - anywhere.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

The Prosecutor's Case .. Continued

There are other people, I just want to run through a couple of them that were out that day. Brian High. He ran around the park at ten or 10:30. He didn't see anything. Patricia McWhinney. She was walking at the other end of the park. She didn't see anything.
Basically what does that tell us? Tells us that Laci Peterson didn't go out for a walk that day.

Nothing of the sort. If people didn’t see her they didn’t see her. However Vivian Mitchell saw her, as did her husband.

It tells us that Laci Peterson was killed in her home, as we have been telling you now for five months, between the night of the 23rd and the morning of the 24th.

Then where is the proof? Show us proof of a crime scene – anywhere - ever.

That's what it tells us. That's what all of that evidence tells us. And there is nothing to dispute any of that.

Nonsense. There is nothing but evidence to dispute it. The total lack of evidence disputes it.

You can't dispute any of these people that were out walking around in the neighborhood.
Let's take a minute and look at the defense case. The defense wants, I mean it was clearly a case of attacking the police. I mean, obviously, if you didn't get that from the first day then I think you have missed it. But clearly it was the defense attacking the police.
Why do you do that when you are the defense in this case? Because you got to take the focus off the defendant. If you focus on the defendant, it's overwhelming that he's guilty.

A total lack of evidence against him is far from overwhelming.

But you got to divert. Constantly divert. Take the focus off the defendant. Put the police on trial. That's what the defense was about here. But nothing is consistent. Let's look.

Why doesn’t Distaso proceed with his own case? HE is the one who is attacking.

Either the defendant is an avid salt water fisherman or he's not. Right? If he is an avid salt water fisherman that would go running out to the San Francisco Bay at the drop of a hat on Christmas Eve, then he's going to have the right gear. He's going to know what he's doing. He's going to be fishing in the right place. Didn't have any of those things. He either is or he isn't.

Nonsense. Once again the ridiculous theory that imperfection = guilt. The 'right gear' thing is total nonsense. Who hasn't heard of the 'Pocket Fisherman'? How many of those were sold? And you can buy similar items to this day.

If he doesn't have the right gear, if he's fishing in the wrong place, if he doesn't know what he's doing, then he's not going to run out to the San Francisco Bay at the drop of a hat. Can't have it both ways.

Nonsense. You fish with what you have and catch what you catch. Even commercial fishermen have 'by-catch' – they can't avoid it.

He's either courting the media, or he's being hunted by the media. Can't have it both ways.

He was avoiding them. The police were pointing the media at him with constant leaks.

You either go on Diane Sawyer and do nationwide interviews, and do local interviews, do all these things, or you run and hide. Can't have it both ways.

He wanted the media help to find his wife. He didn't want the focus on him. Too bad the police did the reverse – apparently they are allowed to have it as many ways as they wish.

You need to base your verdict in this case on evidence.

If only Distaso could have produced some – even the slightest amount. Why is there none if he is so guilty?

You know, it is a little difficult for you all, I think, as a jury. I think it was because so much evidence was, came in, what's called hearsay. And, you know, it's a fine line for the jurors to kind of figure out what are we allowed to consider for its truth that it really happened, and what do we have to consider only for the reasonableness of what the police have done? And you heard vast amounts of information as to what evidence from hearsay that's only related to the reasonableness of what the police have done.
You can't consider it for the truth at all.
The most important thing, I think, of that, that I really want to make clear to you is, you did not hear a single witness who said they saw Laci Peterson walking in the neighborhood, or on Covena, or in the park on December 24th. You did not hear from this stand a single witness who said that. You heard officers testify that people reported to that. You can't consider that for the truth, not a single bit of it.

Why not? Brocchini testified about what he was told by a person who told him what he said Scott told him! And lied about it. And now Distaso says you can’t trust the police or their testimony? Back to fantasyland? The witnesses whose police reports were read in made honest reports about seeing Laci. The police destroyed the testimony of these witnesses by 'accidentally' hypnotising them with an untrained person. Oddly, all of the police 'accidents' served to hurt Scott.

You know what's an interesting point, Detective Brocchini was on the stand. He was asked about Chris Van Zandt, a man who had called in and reported that he saw Laci Peterson down in the park on the December 24th, and it came in as hearsay. Not offered for the truth, so you can't consider it for that. And that was the testimony. That was it. Yeah, this guy said he saw her, called in. Okay.
Well, remember we brought in Chris Van Zandt, the actual witness. We brought him in and put him on the stand.Okay, fine. Let's hear what he has to say. Remember what he told you? He said, I know for sure I didn't see Laci Peterson on the 24th in the park that day. So the only witness who, the only person who called in to the police and said they saw Laci Peterson that came in and testified, told you without any doubt in his mind it wasn't Laci Peterson that he saw that day. That's the only evidence you can consider for its truth. None of these other ones.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The Prosecutor's Case .. Continued

Let's talk about the defendant in April. Go to that changed appearance picture.
We have all seen this a bunch of times. He dyed his hair kind of an orangey blonde. Dyed his eyebrows, his goatee. He said he did it because he thought the media was following him.
This is not true. He told his friend Mike Richardson, remember, he said, he remember, he was driving his dad's truck. And he said I'm driving it because I think the police put a GPS tracker in my truck. The police are following me.
Remember what Lee Peterson's testimony was about that? Well, we just like to switch cars. That's what he said. I mean that's ridiculous. He asked the Department of Justice agents, "What agency are you with, state or local?" Remember, when he's arrested he had almost $15,000 in cash in his car. He had numerous clothing items. I mean he was really prepared to live out of his car for a length of time.
There is no disputing that he had recently acquired camping equipment, a shovel, a water purifier, a mask and snorkel, a camp saw, knives, a rope, camp axe. You have seen the pictures of all the things he had. He had a hammock. He had his, he had Ann Bird, his sister's, credit card. He had his brother John's ID.

He had random junk. It matches no useful list of camping equipment, for living at sea or on land – or anywhere.

Remember what the testimony was about why he had the ID? That's ludicrous also.

What is ludicrous about getting a discount? Distaso just finished claiming he had financial problems (and failing to do so) however Scott couldn't work so why not save some money and avoid the insane notoriety the police deliberately leashed on Scott?

Here's a guy with $15,000 in cash in his car. He is just carrying loose. He's going to get his brother's ID so he can go rip off Torrey Pines for 25, or what was it 25 or 30 bucks? Does anybody believe that? Do you think he believes that?

That's how you get rich – by not wasting money.

This is from a family that gave him $30,000 for that Del Rio membership. Was it like 20 or 30, I don't remember exact number. Some significant amount of money 20 or 30 thousand, something like that for a down payment on the house.
Lee Peterson gave him $5,000 in January. He wouldn't admit it on the stand.
Remember, the only thing he would say, well, I don't remember that. I showed him the transcript. Well, you know, we certainly discussed it, but I don't remember doing it.
Remember his mom testified on April 8th she gave him six or eight thousand dollars. And then she gave him another, on April 17th, $10,000. But we're supposed to believe that for 25 or 30 bucks or 50 bucks, whatever the testimony was, he's going to be ripping off Torrey Pines? That's. That's ludicrous. He's got his brother's ID.

We can't all be big spenders like Distaso. He blew $11 million of taxpayers' money on this case alone – and several more millions prosecuting Douglas S. Mouser.

Remember, he was driving at car that he bought in his mother's name. That was that Boy-Named-Sue kind of thing that's Mike Griffin. Said he had a Florida driver's license, but he gave his mother's license number. Remember, I asked her about that? She said yes, it was because the police kept taking his cars.
That wasn't true. They took one car and refused to return it. He sold the other car. Remember he wanted to get rid of the truck.
He said, well, yeah, his brother John, or whoever, was just dying to have Scott's truck, so he had to sell it, had to run off and try to buy a Saab in his mom's name, then a Mercedes.

None of which is even remotely evidence of homicide.

You know, I think it was clear that his family would do what they have to do to protect him from being prosecuted in this case.

Once again, no evidence of this – just Distaso’s opinions. Since Scott was innocent, why shouldn't his family help him?

Let's go to the last thing. No one else. Go ahead. I talked about the timing.
Let's talk about the dog.
You know it's a Golden Retriever. I'm not trying to make this dog into Cujo.
It's not Cujo. But there is, but it's a simple fact, it's a big dog. Okay.
You are walking, you are walking down through the neighborhood. And you heard about this neighborhood. You heard about all these, you know, you are wondering why we are putting on all these pregnant ladies up on the stand to testify about walking the neighborhood. Because a lot of people, a lot of pregnant women walk their dogs in that neighborhood, and nothing ever happens to them. Some of them even look like Laci Peterson.
So you are walking your dog. Got this big dog with you. And either the defendant killed her, as I have argued to you all day that he did, or someone came and grabbed her. Don't you think the dog is going to bark? You heard him bark right? Heard him bark on the videotape. You heard him bark on some of the calls. You heard the pool man testify he barked. I think Rene Tomlinson, I'm not a hundred percent sure.
And, you know, this is what the defendant says about his dog on January 1st at 10:05. He's talking to Amber. One of these where he is pretending he's in Europe. This is what he says about his own dog. Go ahead and play that clip. January 1.
"I want to kill him". He is talking about his own dog barking in the background. That's what he tells Amber on January 1st.

We know he was lying to her – like every married man since the beginning of time has lied. So what?

Here all people that were out in the neighborhood, you heard testimony from on December 24th. Russell Graybill. He was on Covena between 10:35 and 10:50. He didn't see anything. Amy Krigbaum, between 10:30 and 10:38. She didn't see anything.
You heard some testimony about Diane Jackson. Remember that? And seeing a van.
Remember what Amy Krigbaum said. She said that she had that white Siemens van at the time. I had her write on this picture. Remember, this is looking at the Peterson house. Remember, this is from her house looking there.
Remember what she said? She said, yeah, it was parked right in front of my house. He even had it right where it was, a van.
You heard Diane Jackson saw a van. I think the testimony was 11:40. You heard that through the officer. There is a van. Of course, she saw a van. Van is right there on the street.

A van is a common vehicle for an abduction. Better than a car. Better than a truck. A van. Perfect.

You saw Kim Westphal, one of the women that came walking. Said she was walking on Covena around 10:50. She didn't see anything. Kristin Dempewolf. Her husband Martin came in and testified. She said she left home around 9:15 to 9:30. I think the testimony was that it's on the map that is in evidence, it would have put her walking past the Petersons' home some time around 10:00 o'clock or so. I don't remember that exactly, so you should probably go back to check that one.
Remember, Susan Medina, the neighbors across the street. They were out on Covena a couple of times. They had a city inspector come at some time in the morning. Bob Nickerson. He was, he was there between 10:20 and 10:30.
He didn't see anything. Remember what she said? They left their home between 10:30 and 10:33 on the 24th. And the way they know that is because Susan Medina has her cell phone records.
She said, I called my son as we were leaving town. And the record shows they left at 10:33. And she said, I called from Encina. It's on here, Encina, right turned on to Encina. That's where she called. That's where she called from.
And Encina is right around the corner. So she probably left her house her at 10:32. Couldn't take more than a minute to drive down Covena to Encina. She didn't see anything.
Now that's a good point. That brings up a good point with the Medinas.
Remember we heard all that testimony about the burglary at their house? There was a burglary at their house. It didn't happen on December 24th.

Then why did the witness report the safe out on the front lawn on Dec 24th?

It didn't have anything to do with Laci Peterson's disappearance, because the Medinas were home at the time the dog was found.

Proof? Laci could have been taken any time that day before Scott came home.

You can take everything about the cell sites, and you can take everything about Austin's receipts and throw it away, go with Karen Servas's original statement where she said, I found the dog exactly at 10:30.
Well, let me discuss that. She just left, or they were just getting ready to leave, or they were in their driveway and they hadn't left yet, and she found the dog.Now, the Medina's didn't see anything about the dog. What that tells us is that Karen Servas's 10:18 time is right. They already put that dog away.
But one thing we know without any doubt whatsoever is that Medina burglary had nothing to do with this crime whatsoever. Because that dog was found before the Medinas even left their home.

Which proves nothing even if true. It proves nothing about a time of abduction.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

The Prosecutor's Case .. Continued

Here is the photo, again the same photo, People's 70. These are the actual photos that Detective Brocchini took on the 24th. And you can see where the pliers are.
The end of the pliers there, underneath the bench seat in the boat. This is on the 24th. So we know that those pliers, when Detective Brocchini went to the warehouse on December 24th, that the needle-nose or the portion of the pliers where that hair is underneath the bench seat of the boat.
So right out of the gate let's ask ourself, if Laci, although she never told anybody she saw the boat or knew of the boat or anything else, if we assume that she did, just for the sake of argument, and she leaned over somehow into the boat, how did her hair get into the needle-nose or jaw portion of the pliers?

His own witness makes it clear it fell in. There's no other, reasonable, explanation and, even if he could prove something else it would have no evidentiary value.

Here is the picture of the pliers as they were on the 26th or the 27th. I don't remember exactly which day, when the search warrant was served. And you can see where they were. Remember where they were on the 24th. Here's where they were on the 26th and 27th. The exact same place.
So now we know where the pliers were on the evening of the 24th. We know they didn't move until the search warrant was served on the 26th or the 27th.
And remember what the testimony was. That picture that's on the screen, and I can't remember what People's number it is, but you've seen it a million times.
I think it's 120 A, was taken right after the hairs were picked up.
And look where those little boxes are. Where those little boxes are, there's a little tiny bit of debris. Remember the plant expert came and said, because remember what happened was, remember they thought this was one hair originally, and then remember they checked it later and the two hair fragments came out.
And the expert came and said Yeah, it was two hair fragments, and in his opinion it was probably two separate hairs.
Well, look at it logically. This is what the detectives see when they pull it out in the search warrant. It looks like one hair. Nobody pulled them out at that time to look. Remember what the testimony was, they opened the evidence bag, opened up the pliers and dropped it down in there.
And remember that little piece of debris which the plant expert came and said it wasn't organic. It was something non-organic.
And also look at the other end, that little tiny grass. Remember he said it was common bluegrass, or something on there. So how do we know, this is the 26th, how do we know for sure nobody messed with this hair at all, that there's nothing at all wrong with this, that nothing bad happened, nobody planted or did anything? Well, remember those two little fragments; they're there on the 26th and the 27th, go to the next picture, and there they are again when the criminalist gets them and is ready to do his examination.
So if somebody planted hairs in, they would have to plant the exact same tiny little fragments that we saw from before. And that just didn't happen.
So we know without any doubt that the two hair, or the hair fragments that were collected from the 26th are the same ones that were tested by the criminalist when he got it, because it's right there in his picture.
Is this a good time for a break?

When we left off I was talking about the pliers. Remember what else the expert said. The hairs were matched or splayed by biomechanical means, which means they got crunched in the pliers' jaw.

When the MPD picked up the pliers and squeezed them onto the hair.

If your hair just falls out and falls down into the pliers, how is that going to happen? You know it can't. That's further evidence, of course, these pliers were used in this crime. There is a lot of talk, go back to the main picture of the pliers. The first one. The first one. Picture one.
There is a lot of talk about these pliers. And remembering back, remember how the expert came and testified that when she examined the pliers they were rusted? Remember there was a whole lot of talk about whether, well, whether the pliers were recently used? That was part, now they are pretty rusted.
Well, don't forget there is plenty of pictures, I'm not going to show you now, but there is plenty of pictures of water in the bottom of that boat. These pliers were sitting in salt water for a time until they were picked up. So it was at least a couple of days. And then when they were picked up, they just continued rusting until they tested them in February.

Why were they so careless as to allow this to happen? A carelessness they exhibited on many other occasions?

How do we know that? Don't take my word for it. You don't have to. Take a look at this picture. Right here, down by the, look down here by the handle of the pliers, and the thing is black. There is a little bit of rust on here.
You will have a lot better picture of it when you take it back there with you.
Here we know for sure is a black tiny bit of rust. Look what the pliers look like when they test this, she tests them in February, months later. Now they are completely rusted. Look at this. Completely rusted. Completely rusted. They just continued rusting.
They weren't rusted back when the defendant used them in this crime.

Once again, no evidence of this – just Distaso’s opinions.

They rusted when she got them, because nobody cleaned them off. They put them in the evidence locker waiting to test, they continued to rust.
I want to go back to Doctor Cheng's testimony very briefly. When I said there was a big storm that pushed those bodies loose, I guess I said February 12th. I didn't even know if he mentioned that to me at the break. It was actually April 12th, if you remember what his testimony was.
He also said, this one last thing I want to talk about, that he also said that the weather on the 24th, remember the winds were calm. A good day to, you know, again, going back to that, well, yeah the boat would have pitched, all that kind of stuff? He said, no, the winds were calm. It was a pretty uneventful day out on the San Francisco Bay on the 24th. Easily doable for the defendant to just motor out there, dump Laci, come on back.

Once again, no evidence of this – just Distaso’s opinions. Why no test of this theory? We know why. Even Distaso knew it was not possible.

Let's take a look at this anchor real quick. You guys have seen it, passed it around, everything else. Remember what the expert said about this? I mean the fishing expert. This cannot hold your boat in the San Francisco Bay. It cannot do it. Just can't. You throw it overboard, what's the first thing you are going to do? Start drifting. There is nothing that's going to grab in the mud.
Also, there is no rope on that here either. There is no rope on that anchor.
There was never any rope on that anchor, from any accounts that we have seen.

No rope? Then how did Scott attach the body to the alleged weights? Scotch tape?

Here is the picture that Detective Brocchini took on December 24th. No rope attached to that anchor. You are going to use that anchor, I mean if you are going to use that cement weight, is really is what it is, but we have been calling it an anchor. You are going to use that as an anchor, this is on the 24th.

Where is the proof of this? He forgot the rope. So what?

Where is the rope that it goes to. You know, you take this thing like it is now, like it is in that picture, pitch it over your boat? Well, of course it's gone, right? There is nothing that's going to hold your boat.
This is not an anchor. It's just a weight he made. He made a couple other ones, at least four or five other ones that he used to hold his wife's body down.

Once again, no evidence of this – just Distaso’s opinions.

Before I leave The Bay, I want to talk about, just briefly, a lot of testimony about them searching The Bay with the sonar. They didn't find anything. And, remember, you heard from the Dive Master, and he testified that, you know, there is a zero visibility in the bay. The tidal surge is incredible.
The way they searched The Bay, they get down on their hands and knees in the bottom and stick their hands down in the mud. I mean what are the chances of them finding anything, really? I mean like how small these anchors are. What are the chances in the entire San Francisco Bay? You saw the pictures. They are going to find this? Looks like searching for a needle in a haystack.
Also, you saw the sonar images, what the sonar really looks like. I think that I passed those pictures around to you. Tiny little squiggly blob, that is ten feet. How are you supposed to find a decomposing Laci Peterson on the bottom of The Bay?
Remember what they told you? We dropped our sonar fish. Remember that? We're going along, our sonar fish broke off. That's an $10,000 piece of equipment.
We hit the GPS coordinates so we know exactly where it went down. Took us three weeks. Remember, it's a big metal, I think he said three or four feet metal object, yellow, bright yellow. And he said we knew exactly where it went down.
Took us three or four weeks of searching. We didn't even find it.
Finally I saw this little hump that was down there. I sent a diver down, they were able to pull it out of the mud. That's how hard it was to find, something that they knew exactly where it was, that metal, and painted bright yellow.
What are the chances they are going to find Laci? Zero. I mean it's like finding a needle in a haystack.

So because they COULDN’T find her that proves she was there? Was this 'opposite' week? Yet they COULD find a much smaller object – and quickly. This proves Distaso wrong.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

The Prosecutor's Case .. Continued

Let's talk about the defendant's financial status for a minute. His business, by everyone's imagination, I mean even their expert, was doing poorly. Their expert's testimony was basically it was a startup company and was going to be funded by, you know, ad nauseam, or at least four years, I guess. Whatever. So it was supposed to lose money.
But they didn't show their expert, you know, a real critical e-mail where this is, looks like it's written in November, 4 November, 4 November, 2000 and 2, and this is People's 298. And what his boss is telling him: Dear Scott, thanks for your report. The sales in October are only 50 percent of your revised targets, and the question to be done is why. I think we should be able to see now concrete signals of an inversion, you know, a switching, of the trend we established for 2003, a break-even principle.
I mean, they're telling him, What's going on here? You're less than 50 percent of your revised goals. You know, what's the deal here? The story's not that the company is just going to just give money away to Scott Peterson to spend as he wants to. The company is saying Hey, you need to get on the ball.

And what is the point? Estimates are just that. Some start-ups are run away successes, others are hard to get off the ground. Consider two, and Who would have predicted that Google would succeed and Pets would fail, both so spectacularly?
Sometimes it takes trying different approaches until you find the one that works. None of this has any bearing at all on the alleged homicide. Is his argument that wealthy men commit no murders? If so he is, as always, spectacularly wrong.
The company, in the email, is asking him for his advice. The US market is notoriously hard to break in to and foreign companies have to have persistence to achieve this. Even the Japanese made many missteps in selling autos in the USA. Scott's employers knew that Scott is their best hope to find their way in. What is the connection with an alleged homicide? An email from his bosses? This is truly desperate nonsense.

But that e-mail, you heard his testimony, from the defense expert, was never shown to him. And remember also, you know, the People's expert testified the defendant and Laci had a high debt to credit ratio. They, I'm not arguing to you they were on the verge of bankruptcy or they were near the end, or anything like that. But they were living kind of at the upper end of where they could handle it.
And what their expert said is No, he had all this money, he had tons of money to spend, look at this chart. Remember they put this chart up where it looked like he had two thousand dollars a month, you know, of free money just to spend away.
And all of a sudden we asked him Is that gross or net? You know, we all got to pay taxes.
Oh, well, yeah, that's, that's gross, so, you know, immediately cut, cut that down by a third, cut this down, cut that down.
It was not an accurate portrayal of these people's finance. What the defense expert presented to you was just not correct.

On the contrary, it was very accurate and they were doing very well. They were in a good place financially, and Laci’s inheritance would have helped them even more. Many, many people are far worse off. Even Distaso's dissembling cannot hide the fact that $2,000 per month, even pre-tax, is very comfortable indeed.

Let's talk about the dog tracking evidence. Remember Eloise Anderson testified that her tracking dog, Trimble, her tracking dog, Trimble, tracked, she checked both of these choke points here at the marina. She checked the bathroom area. She ran it through the parking lot. It was a she. And then the dog hit along the vegetation line, where you heard from the experts that's where the scent collects. Went down to the end of the dock and gave end of trail signal for Laci Peterson.
And remember there was a whole discussion about what scent article she used and whether it was the appropriate one and was it better than a slipper and whatnot.
Well, they kept talking about the glass case, and that's not what the testimony was. What the testimony was was that she scented her dog on the glasses inside the case. This is the best scent article that there is. Anybody, look, I can take my glasses off right now. Around your nose pad you sweat, around your ears you sweat. Of course Laci's scent is going to be on this.
Not only that, it doesn't matter who handled the outside of this thing. Scott Peterson, the detectives. You know, you didn't hear any evidence that anybody did, but let's just pretend they did. It doesn't matter at all because there's nothing the matter with the scent article at all because it's scented on what's inside.

Nonsense. Laci and Scott slept together. No dog could separate their scents. This is a complete fraud.

Now, Mr. Seitz came and, you know, I don't have a whole lot of contentions with Mr. Seitz. He basically agreed with everything that, that Captain Boyer and Eloise Anderson said. He said that, he said that they can track scent in vehicles. And remember, I don't think Laci Peterson, I'm not arguing Laci Peterson was in Scott Peterson's truck. I'm arguing she was in the back of the boat.
So we're not talking about a sealed-up container. We're talking about a boat that, you know, when you drive it is going to get some air flapping out and going to get scent spraying out all over the place. But he said, and he agreed, he said Yeah, my dog's tracked scent in vehicles before. And he basically agreed with everything, scent theory, that the experts said. He said Yeah, you know, people have a live scent and the dogs can track it. If somebody dies there's a residual live scent that is going to stay on them for a period of time.
It's not like as soon as we're dead, bang, our scent changes. I mean that's just, I mean that's just common sense.
Alls he testified to was I ran my dog across this boat ramp for a minute to a minute and a half.
Now, what sort of search was that? 60 to 90 seconds. Ran the dog, you know, one pass maybe, I don't know how long it takes the dog to work. Maybe two passes, didn't find anything, put the dog in the truck.
I'm not saying, I'm not arguing to you Ron Seitz was lying. I don't think he was. I don't think he's a bad guy. It was just an insufficient search.

Once again, an evidence free statement. Where is the proof? Why is this all Distaso’s opinions and no facts?

He even said when Mr. Harris was questioning him, Mr. Harris said Shouldn't you have checked these choke points? Yeah, I should have.
You heard from all the experts that scent collects along the vegetation line, and he didn't check there. He checked across the concrete ramp.
And finally, at the end remember what he said? He said Yeah, either I or Eloise could be right. He wasn't saying It's my way or the highway. He just came here and told us what his dog found, not what hers found.
Let's talk about the hair in the pliers. John, pull up that picture for me, would you?
Here's the pliers at the, as they were at the search warrant. And when they were pulled out of the boat. Need my laser pointer.
Here's, this is when they were just picked up, and I put this box, and you know what, you really can't see it, but I'm going to talk about it anyway because you can go back there and you'll be able to see it yourself when you look at the actual photograph. But here's where the pliers were. There's really no dispute that Laci Peterson's hair was found in those pliers. It matches microscopically. You heard that from Rod Oswalt and from the FBI expert. I think her name was Karen Reubush. It matches her mitochondrial DNA.
GERAGOS: Objection. There's a stipulation, there's already been an admonition that he cannot say that matches mitochondrial DNA. Same issue –
JUDGE: I don't believe he said he matched. It was consistent.

Clearly he DID say it matched, despite stipulations and admonitions, continuing his practice of deceiving the jury repeatedly.

DISTASO: That's fine. I apologize.
JUDGE: That's all right. I already admonished the jury this could happen.
DISTASO: Yeah. Well, it was consistent with her mitochondrial DNA. I'm arguing to you that that is more than proof beyond a reasonable doubt that that's Laci Peterson's hair in those pliers.
So the question is how did it get there. Is it, was it a shed hair? Did it just fall off and magically appear into the pliers, where they were? Well, let's look at that.

No. When the MPD shook Scott’s jacket out in the boat, a jacket that Laci wore to walk the dog, it fell off on top of the pliers. Other wise you have to believe that it stayed in place in the boat during a 90 mile highway trip with the boat juddering up and down all the way and with the wind buffeting through the boat all the way home. Apparently Mr Distaso has forgotten all of his lectures about what is reasonable.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

The Prosecutor's Case .. Continued

Let's talk about the defendant's handgun. Remember he had the handgun in the car, and remember the whole story that was made, I mean, the whole questioning of Detective Brocchini that, that, you know, he took that handgun without telling him?
Well, he had every right to take the handgun without telling him. It's against the law to drive around with a loaded handgun in your car.
But regardless, even if you think the detective overreached there, let's say, let's say you think that, okay?

If the situation were reversed, somehow it would ‘prove’ Scott a killer. But it’s all OK if it’s Broccini!

There's some interesting things about the handgun. Why did the defendant have the handgun in his truck?
If you killed your wife and you're taking it for protection, it makes perfect sense. It's perfectly reasonable.

Scott needed protection from a corpse? Are we back in Distaso’s fantasyland again?

What the defendant said, the reason the defendant said he had the handgun in his car is he left it there from a pheasant hunting trip. Remember that? He said he went through certain actions to, to work the gun and it jammed.
Remember the gun expert came and said It worked fine for me. With the ammunition that was in there. So we know that's not true.
Remember his own father said I don't remember him having a handgun on that trip.
So why did he take the gun? How do we know, let me phrase it to you this way.
How do we know the defendant took the gun that day with him for protection? If you just killed your wife, you're driving down the road, you've got her body in the back, it makes every sense to have the gun.


Here's what the defendant said. All his guns, remember, were kept in this room, a spare bedroom. Remember Detective Brocchini asked him, this is People's 37 O I'm showing you. Asked him about the duffel bag that was on the ground. It's hard to see even close. But if you blow it up it's worse. That's why I'm showing you here.
There's a duffel bag here. Detective Brocchini said Hey, what's the deal with the duffel bag? There was a jacket in there, looked like somebody reached down and pulled it out in a hurry. He said, Oh, yeah. Yeah. That. Remember he had this stuff hanging down here, as if somebody's in a hurry.
And remember what the defendant's story was: Well, I got some white shoes out of there. I got some white tennis shoes out and I took the tennis shoes and I e went and I put them on my wet bar.
Okay. What possible reason would you be in such a hurry that you pull all this stuff out and leave it hanging off of there, and leave the thing hanging on the ground, and take your tennis shoes and put them on the wet bar outside? Is that reasonable? Or is it reasonable that, Man, I got to get my gun, I got to get out of here.

Another evidence free claim.

So you're scrambling around trying to find it, you reach up there, oh, it's in this bag, you pull it down, your stuff falls, falls on the ground, you pull the gun out, throw it in your glovebox and off he goes.
You know, you know how else we know that the defendant was really concerned about that gun? Was because, remember what Detective Brocchini testified to, after he dropped him off in the early morning hours of December 25th, on the day that should be the most horrible day in his whole life, he calls him up an hour or two later, he says: Hey, did you take that gun out of my truck? I wish you would have told me.
Why did he go back looking for that gun if he didn't know the detective took it?
Why did he go straight back and look for his gun?

Because he didn’t want to leave it in the truck.

Because he was worried about it. Because he knew that it was associated with this crime, and he wanted to deal with that.

Exactly how was it 'associated with this crime'? Distaso can't associate Scott with this crime.

You know, the other thing, too, and this is just a side note, really, but, you know, those sturgeon are big fish. And remember I asked the expert, you know, Well, can you, can you bring a gun with you to shoot the sturgeon to subdue them? He said No, you can't do that. So we know the defendant didn't have the gun with him for that reason.

And Scott made no such claim. So now he is to be convicted based on claims he didn't make?

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Let's talk about the boat. The 14 foot aluminum fishing boat. You know, and these kind of boats have been around for years. And, you know, I know there was a lot of talk that, I don't know if 'talk' is the right word. Maybe insinuation is the right word; that, you know, somehow these are unstable and, you know, they're ready to tip over at the drop of a hat and boy, there's no way that, you know, you could dump a body out of the boat and that's impossible because, you know, it's going to go over and the defendant would have gone in the water, and the whole bit.
Of course, there's no evidence that would have done that. In fact, the guy from the company that makes these boats, remember what he said. He brought the, you know, the pictures to show the tests they do. They fill the boat completely full with water. Completely submerged and it still floats. They put weights on one side, completely submerged, it still floats. They put, I think they put weights in the, let me take a look here.
Yeah, they do side stability tests with the boat full of water. They do level flotation with the boat full of water. They do all these calculations.
And, you know, the things is these aluminum fishing boats, they've been around for years. I can't remember exactly what the guy testified to, I think it was at least 20 years. It was probably more. And don't you think, if these boats were tipping over every time a couple of guys leaned on one side to net a fish, that there, that there would be, we wouldn't have these boats or they would fix them or they would do something?

Three men went out in a similar boat on a Modesto lake. The wind blew up a little, the boat turned over, and two of them were drowned. A larger boat, a cabin cruiser rented for the occasion, say, would not tip over. Once again Distaso is testifying to his opinions with no evidence.

Remember Bruce Peterson? We brought in the guy who sold the boat to the defendant. Remember what he said? Did you ever use that boat? Heck, yeah, I used it all the time. Well, what did you use it for. For fishing. Well, where at? And, you know, he told us a bunch of different places. Who went with you?
My wife. Well, were you and your wife ever on the same side of the boat? Yeah.
Yeah, if she caught a fish, I'd go over there. Did you ever have any problems?
No. Could you get up and walk around? Yeah. Was there any problems? No.

Nonsense. No one gets up and walks around in such a boat.

You know, it's a ridiculous argument to say you can't do this. I mean, look, you've got Laci Peterson in the boat, you sit on the middle of the seat; you know, I'm not saying take Laci Peterson and sit up on the gunwale of the boat, you know, the rim. That's not how you do this. It's easy. Sit on the middle of the seat, pull her up so you kind of counterbalance it, and push her over.
That's it. It's done in probably a minute, or less.

Then why didn’t Distaso try it and film it? Because he didn’t believe it could be done.

You know, you want to see some other pictures, take a look at this exhibit.
Remember what the fisherman said? Here's a guy, here's three adults, full sized adults, fishing in a 13 foot aluminum boat. This one is actually smaller than the defendant's. Three adults in the Bay, standing up in the boat on the same side while they're about to land, I think he said this is a 60 to 70 pound sturgeon.
I said Did you have any problem doing that? He said no. And I think, I can't remember if I asked him or the defense did, but somebody asked him Well, could you pull a big sturgeon in and out of that boat? Yeah. Yeah, he said no problem. Well, you couldn't do it by yourself, could you? He said Yeah, sure I could. He said it just like I said it, you sit on the seat, you pull it in, you know, you put one end up on the side and slide it over. It wouldn't be any problem at all.
There's no evidence to contradict that whatsoever.

Except Distaso’s own. He claimed elsewhere that this boat was too small to fish for sturgeon. Which is it?

You know, there was a question how could Laci Peterson fit in the boat. I know we talked about that. Well, here's Kim Fulbright, a member of my office. She weighed, I think Laci weighed a hundred and 53 pounds. I think the testimony was Kim weighed a hundred and 57 pounds. They were both about the exact time of pregnancy. At least very close. And, you know, here she is. She fits right in the boat, no problem. In fact, she disappears underneath the side of the boat, if you look at it. And this is in the back compartment.

Except she wasn’t dead, she climbed in and out on her own and there was no rigor mortis.

Throw the boat cover on there, no one's going to see a thing.

Unless you are towing the boat.

Here's from the middle compartment. Same thing. In fact, in the middle compartment, she disappears even more.
And finally, here's her in the front compartment. You can't see her at all.
So for anyone to get up and argue to you that you can't put a pregnant woman in that 14 foot boat, it's just not true.

While she’s alive, sure.

What else do we know about the boat? Nobody knew about it. No one, all the friends, family, the Peterson family, Rochas, nobody knew the defendant had bought a boat. So you've got this secret purchase going on.
Why do you keep that boat secret? Remember Ron and Sharon were I think at the defendant's home on December 15th with the defendant and Laci. Remember Ron said Hey, you know what, I got Sharon out fishing today. It was kind of a rare event because it's not something she did a lot. Oh, yeah, they talked about fishing, talked about what they did. Nobody mentioned the boat.
The boat was bought on December 9th. Why not? If Laci knew about the boat, remember what Sharon said. She would talk to her about purchases. She would talk to her about what was going on in her life. Nobody said she was a wallflower, afraid to talk. In fact, the testimony was kind of contrary to that.
Nobody knew about the boat, even his own family.

A man is keeping a purchase 'secret' A FEW DAYS BEFORE CHRISTMAS. Is he the only person in the world doing that at that time?

Remember the boat cover. You all probably wondered why we spent so much time talking about the boat cover. Well, other than the points I already made about it, there's something really important about it. Remember where it was stored?
Remember, I mean remember where they found it, is what I should say.
Okay. You've got this boat cover. It was in the back of the defendant's truck.
I think the testimony was it was in the back of the defendant's truck on December 24th. I might be wrong about that. There might not be any testimony on it until the 26th.
But regardless, this is the boat cover for the boat. If you have a boat cover for your boat, why isn't it with your boat? Why isn't it in your boat? Why isn't it on your boat? Why isn't it in the warehouse where you keep your boat?

You don’t need a boat cover INSIDE a warehouse.

All legitimate questions, unless you used it as part of killing your wife.
And then maybe what would you do? Well, maybe, instead of leaving it there in your warehouse, or keeping it in your boat, or keeping it here under this covered patio, or keeping it here in this particular shed, you'll walk it all the way around your house, remember this gate's locked, you can't even go in there, so you walk it all the way around your house, you put it in the shed that's farthest from anything else, and then open, I mean, then put a leaky gas blower on top of it so it's completely saturated with gas. It smells like gas.

Why didn’t the MPD ask for it then? Scott never insisted on a search warrant – even after Brocchini stole items from the house and truck.

Remember what Detective, remember what Detective Brocchini testified to when the defendant called him on the 25th? Hey, are you using cadaver dogs? You know, kind of a funny question right out of the gate like that. Are you using cadaver dogs?
Remember what Captain Boyer said about gasoline? It throws off cadaver dogs.

And Scott would know this because . . . . ?

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

The Prosecutor's Case .. Continued

Now, let's talk about the age of Conner. The, remember we talked about that at length. Dr. Galloway's example, her estimate was 33 to 38 weeks. That was based on some anthropological charts that she did. But if you remember her testimony, and if you're at all unclear on that, I'd ask you to get it read back. You know, I've asked you that a bunch of times. The court reporters hate it when we say that because it's a lot of work to find those testimonies and read it back, but it's important that you guys do that.
The, what, what she said was that estimate that she gave, you have to, I think it's an average of 35 weeks from anthropological charts. And then you have to plus or minus, part of her study, two weeks on either end. So I think that's how she came up with 33 to 38.
Well, remember what she said. It's in the redirect. So, you know, this is where this stuff is said. What she actually said was to get two-thirds of the babies, so for us to get kind of a good guess on two-thirds of the babies, you have to plus or minus two weeks. Well, that still leaves out 33 percent of, of the babies that are out there, right? One third don't fall into that range.
She said to get 95 percent of them you have to plus or minus four weeks on either end. So, now, that gives us with Conner 31 to 40 weeks.
So what does that tell us? It tells us the anthropological charts that Dr. Galloway had is just too big a range for us to really make any definitive determinations.
What the anthropologist is really good for is dating how long remains have been in the water, or on land, or whatever. You know, the three to six months that she gave for each individual, with Conner being inside Laci, is very accurate.
But the dating of the baby is not as much.
So we have to look for some other, other things. Remember what Dr. DeVore said. Dr. DeVore was a specialist in neonatal ultrasound. That's all he does.
He takes pregnant women and he does ultrasounds on them and tries to measure the babies.
He came and measured Conner's femur. He also compared it to Dr. Galloway measurement and he came up with, he applied a standard growth curve. Nothing magical or mystical about what he did. He just took those measurements from where they were, from what those earlier ultrasounds were, he applied a standard growth curve to them that they do with babies, and he said Conner's date of death, depending on which of the three measurements he had, was the 21st, the 23rd or the 24th.
Now, we kept hearing two of those were no good because we know she was alive on the 23rd. Well, we know she was alive on the 23rd up until 8:30. We don't know if she was alive after that. In fact, there's a lot of evidence to support that she wasn't. Either way, though, Dr. DeVore's measurements show us and his testimony shows us that Conner died right at the exact time the prosecution said he did.

De Vore’s theory is bunkum, and mathematically unsound. P. Jeanty (his own reference), F. Rodesch, D. Delbeke and J. E. Dumont say that his bone measuring method is an unreliable method (Journal of Ultrasound in Medicine, Vol. 3, Issue 2 75-79). Every other witness said he was a full term baby. There was no vernix or lanugo nor any other signs of pre-maturity on Conner's body. Shortened foetal long bones may be indicative of a skeletal dysplasia and will also throw off the estimate and that possibility was not disproved. The baby was also not curled up as he would be in the womb.

The, the other experts you heard, Dr. Endraki put the baby at 32 weeks and six days. Dr. Towder said that Dr. Yip didn't change the due date. So all that testimony about changing the due date was contradicted by one of the doctors in his office.
What happened was at that second ultrasound, I'm trying to make this kind of simple, but at that second ultrasound, the second ultrasound has a plus or minus, I think it was testified to, of ten days. So if it's within seven days, the doctors' office doesn't change the due date. But the ultrasound had a different, had a different calculation, so they put in the chart. It was a corrected date of confinement, I think that's what they call it. That's all that was. It didn't really mean anything.
Now, the only evidence that you heard to contradict any of the prosecution witnesses regarding Conner's age when he was found and the date of death and all of that was Dr. March. That's it.
Nothing else contradicted anything else that the prosecution expert said.
But before, actually, before I talk about Dr. March, I'm going to forget something if I don't bring it up now. There was, remember what Dr. Peterson said about Conner's body when he examined it by itself? When he didn't, you know, put it in context with Laci's. When alls he had to look at was a baby that washed ashore in the San Francisco Bay and he didn't know that Laci and Conner were associated. Remember what he said? He said: Based solely on that, I couldn't determine if the baby was born alive or not.
That's very important because I have a feeling when the defense gets up and argues they're going to argue to death that the doctor said that that baby was born alive. That is absolutely not what the doctor said. Alls he said was: The baby was too decomposed for me to make that determination. That's it. Based solely on the baby alone.
But you put the baby with Laci, and everything makes perfect sense. And that's how he came up with his opinion that Conner died while he was inside Laci.

Which may or may not be true. However there was not the slightest valid evidence offered that Conner did not live until around Feb 20th, and that Laci did not live until the middle of March. Her uterus was 2 to 3 weeks post partum and this is impossible if she was dead when Conner was removed from her.

Now, let's go back to Dr. March for a minute. I think it can be argued that Dr.
March was the most unbelievable witness of the entire trial.

No, that would be Brocchini, who altered, destroyed and invented evidence.

You know, I think if we had asked Dr. March any question at all, if we had said, you know: Dr. March, what date is Halloween going to be on next year? He would have come up to this chart, he would have scribbled furiously, he would have drawn a whole bunch of things, and he would have said December 29th.

This is despicable and insulting to an honest man who gave truthful testimony. His estimate was based on experience and was not invented for the sole purpose of convicting Scott Peterson. Devore’s ‘theory’ violates Daubert in every conceivable way.

Because that's pretty much what he did.
Dr. March's entire testimony was based on, apparently based on a conversation, I mean Laci's conversations with Rene Tomlinson that she had announced her pregnancy. And from that, and his whole opinion was critically based on this.
From that he deduced that Laci took a positive preg, I mean, took a pregnancy test on that day, had never had a positive pregnancy test prior to that day, and that, and so because of that he could then deduce these date of deaths that were different than what Dr. DeVore said. That's what it was based on.
And he came up with that because he said Well, Laci went to a baby shower the day before. And he said well, if she had known the day before, of course she would have spoiled this other woman's baby shower and announced this whole thing, because that's what women do. Geez, I'm a fertility specialist; I know what women do. They would of course announce it at a baby shower. There's no way they would keep it to themselves.
That's just not true. You know, women wait to announce pregnancies all the time. Some women wait to announce it until they're showing. There's no indication at all that Laci would have gone to Rene Tomlinson's baby shower and announced that she was pregnant.
I mean, you know what, maybe she didn't want to spoil it. Maybe she said Hey, you know what, this is your day. That is much more reasonable than making these medical, coming here before you and making a very critical medical decision based on information that's not within the medical records. There's nothing in the medical records that says on what is it, June 9th, I think, that Laci Peterson took a positive pregnancy test. I mean, he said that right on the stand.

However her own pregnancy diary supports Dr. March and repudiates DeVore.

Monday, September 1, 2008

The Prosecutor's Case .. Continued

Let's talk about Conner's condition. Conner was decomposed extremely. So much so that the doctor couldn't determine the cause of death. But he was much less decomposed than Laci. In fact, Conner, the way the doctor described it, it was really sad. I think the doctor said Conner was macerated, which means soaking something in fluid. That's what that term means. And, you know, anybody who's soaked anything knows what happens to that kind of stuff. But Dr. Galloway said it best, although it's the crudest definition. She said he was kind of like mush. That's what he was like.
I, I think a better term, as sad as it is, is he was kind of like a jelly fish. There wasn't a whole lot left to him. He's a tiny little guy. You know, that's what he was when he, when he came out.

So how did he ‘come out’? What sort of force could do that and not destroy him? If he came out of the cut while he was so mushy, why didn’t the crabs get inside and consume him? The only reasonable answer is that he was removed from Laci around his actual birth date while alive or barely dead and that he decomposed to the state he was found in. A baby who never takes food will not decompose normally – he will remain in far better condition, just as he was found.

Remember on Laci, I forgot to tell you, there was no evidence of an incision on her uterus, or in any location where somebody had killed Laci and then tried to take the body out.

That is the exact opposite of the evidence Distaso offered.

So we've got this tiny little guy who we know went in the water with Laci Peterson.

There is no evidence he was ever in the sea. None. The twine around his neck was tied shortly after he died in Feb. It was described as having dirt, bugs and a musty smell. That means it was never in the sea, let alone sloshing around out there for weeks.

There's no other explanation.

No other one Distaso likes, however his theory is bunkum.

Like Dr. Peterson said, if he was anywhere but inside her uterus, he would have been eaten or completely decomposed.

Not true. Wrapped in plastic bags, having never taken food, he would be exactly as found.

I mean it's a horrible thing to say, and I can't believe I have to stand up here and tell you folks this, but that's just the facts of the case. It's an important fact because it proves to us that Conner Peterson was inside Laci, died inside Laci, and went in the water with Laci. That's what that proves.

It proves the reverse.

There's other things, too. He had meconium, which is like the first stool sample that a baby has inside of him when he's born. He still had that in him.
That was an indication, that was an indication to the doctor that Conner had not been born. It's further evidence that he went, he died inside of Laci.

No, it isn’t. It means he died when he was removed or shortly afterwards.

And let's talk about, I'm going to show one picture from the autopsy, and I apologize for it in advance, but go ahead and show that picture.
This is Conner Peterson, of course, when he's sitting on the Coroner's table.
The reason I'm showing you this is to talk about the tape material here, plastic, whatever you want to call it, around his neck there and under his arm, and all that.
Nobody tied that around Conner's neck. That did not happen.

That is the ONLY way it could have happened. There is no reasonable way to double knot tine like that except by human hands. None.

Look at that, if somebody tied that knot around Conner's neck, for whatever reason, I don't know, to kill him, you know, suffocate him, for what I have no idea why you would do that, but if that's what happened, you would have injury there to his neck, and there's nothing. Look how loose that is.

Because it was tied there to help keep him wrapped up after he died, wrapped up in plastic bags, possibly by Laci.

The other thing about that is there's some knots in there and you wonder how did you, look, it's totally wrapped around him. He came ashore. Remember that area where he came ashore is a tidal flat, so at high tide it's covered with water all the way. At low tide it's ground. He came ashore on a heavy storm surge.

He was never in the water. He was placed there by human hands.

In fact, when you go back and look at the pictures, you can see the line of debris where the heavier objects settled first and, you know, the lesser heavy objects, as the tide was receding. That's what was going on. As he's back and forth in that storm surge and floating ashore, he just wrapped up in this stuff.

Impossible. Nature doesn’t tie knots. Humans tie knots.

For anyone who's having a hard time grasping that or believing it, how do you get knots in something like that, think of some simple examples. An extension cord. I do it all the time. I take my extension cord that I use when I clip my hedges, I throw in it a drawer. When I pull it out, it almost always has a knot in it.

You are a human (I assume). But this is not evidence.

What about Christmas lights? I don't know if anyone's ever unwrapped Christmas lights every year without getting a knot in it. It's what happens when you put all this stuff together.
Remember the doctor testified, he even testified that babies in the womb will sometimes get knots in their umbilical cords. So the fact that there's a knot in there, or even kind of a loose bow tie, if you look at that thing, it's actually not even wrapped around his neck. It comes around and comes down under his arm. That's where it is. He just floated into that, and in the tidal surge it got wrapped around him. It has nothing at all to do with his disappearance.
How else do we know that?
Let's say it did. Let's say that somebody killed Laci and tried, for whatever reason. Let's just pretend. That's what the defense's theory is. Let's just pretend. Killed Laci, tried to pull the baby out and the baby died. Well, for one thing, if they both go into the water at the same time, Conner's gone. Once he's out of the womb, he can't be protected.
There was some talk that well, maybe, you know, I guess that's why this TARGET bag came up. Maybe they put him in a plastic bag. Maybe they did this or that.
Well, the bag's not airtight, so he's going to keep decomposing at the same rate as Laci.

Untrue. Medical experts testify that if he never took food he would not decompose at the same rate. And the bag merely has to cut down on insect access – and the twine would help do that by wrapping him up.

Remember what the doctor told you? He would be gone. There's no way that they could float together like that and be found at the same time, no possible way, unless he came out of her just like Dr. Peterson said, through normal decomposition, that tidal surge when it broke him free, he broke free, and they both started their tracks to shore. That's the only way this could have happened.

Once again, an evidence free statement.

Friday, February 29, 2008

The Prosecutor's Case .. continued

Let's talk about the autopsy. The cause of death in this case could not be determined. And that's a fact. You know, the sea doesn't give up its secrets very easily.

And yet we are supposed to believe the impossible – that both bodies were given up by the sea within 24 hours but in two widely spaced locations. That cannot be believed.

And simply because someone is a good murderer and is able the hide the body for a long period of time doesn't mean they get off. You don't get a free pass for being a clever murderer.

But it's a fact that these bodies were too decomposed for the pathologist to tell us what, what happened to them.

Cause of death is not an element of this crime. The elements of this crime are somebody, a person, here Laci and Conner, both under the law considered people, even though Conner was a fetus, were killed unlawfully, done with malice aforethought. There was a murder, and I'll talk about this later, but if it's done with premeditation, it's first degree murder.

I'll talk about premeditation. You hear that all the time. Probably hear it on TV. It's not some big secret or, you know, some magical legal term. It's just that somebody stopped and thought about what they were doing. That's it.

You can premeditation in the blink of an eye, if you want to. Just that somebody, instead of just killing, somebody actually said: I'm going to kill; I've made the decision to kill.

That's what premeditation means.

The example I frequently use, it's a little silly but it makes the point, is when you come up to a stop sign, or not a stop sign, but a streetlight and the light's red. And you walk up to it and you stop and see the light's red, so you acknowledge that it's red, and you say, You know what, I'm going to go ahead and cross the street anyway, and you start crossing.

Well, you just made a premeditation jaywalking in the street. That's all it means. It just means you stop and think about or you acknowledge what, what you're about to do.

And yet with no time, place, method or means of death how can you assume premeditation?

So you heard, as I went through that definition, cause of death is not an element. And, you know, people kill and the cause of death is not determined all the time. Here these bones were basically skeletonized. You heard that there was some fatty tissue that had turned. Of course, Laci was missing limbs and, and parts of her. And I hate to say this, but, but some jurors even kind of wonder Well, you need the whole person to find, to find someone guilty of murder.

No, that's not an element either. Doesn't say you have to have recover the entire person, just that you proved that somebody had been killed. Clearly that was done here.

Laci had been in a marine environment for three to six months. That was Dr. Galloway's determination from her analysis, which, of course, fits the facts perfectly here because she went, the defendant killed her on December 24th.

Dr Galloway is wrong. A human body can be reduced to bones in 9 days under optimum conditions. To the state Laci was in would take 7 days. Double that for under water and add some for the temperature and partial clothing and you are still miles away from 111 days. And Galloway originally said 6 months to a year - so which was it? Evelyn Hernandez was a skeleton after 84 days - Galloway was wrong.

She was found on April 14th. So what is that, January 24th, February 24th, March 24th, it would have been, April 24th would have been four months. So one, ten days shy, I guess. Did I miss a month in there? I'm not sure.

Anyway, it fits right in that three to six month period that she said.

Which was wrong. The body of Evelyn Hernandez proves that – she was skeletonized in water in 84 days, OR LESS. In air, Laci could have decomposed as she was found in 30 days or less.

Now, why is that important? Well, let's jump ahead to, let's go all the way back to when I started this morning and said Okay, Laci and Conner washed up right where the defendant was. So that's a fact. Proven fact. I can't say anything about it. The only other way, either he did it, of course, or somebody put the bodies there to frame him.

And I'm going to talk about what possible reason you would have to frame an unsuccessful fertilizer salesman in Modesto.

Once more a lie. Scott was far from unsuccessful. He was doing very well for a start-up business.

But before we get there, let's look at how somebody, or why somebody would frame, you know, anyone. Let's take Scott Peterson out of it for a second.

If you're going to frame somebody, that means you're going to try to pin the crime on them, right? So let's say I'm this faceless bad person that has abducted Laci Peterson. Somehow I figured out exactly where the defendant went, because I would have to know exactly where he went fishing in order to put the bodies right where he went. And I want, I want the bodies to be there, or at least to be found, so that the suspicion will go onto Scott Peterson.

Faulty logic. The bodies were dumped where others have been dumped before and will be again. It was just convenient.

What possible, here's how you know without any doubt that that's not true.

What possible reason would there be then to weight down or hide the bodies so they aren't found for, what, four, four and a half months, whatever it is.

There is no evidence anyone used any weights – none.

If you're going to pin it on somebody, that means you're going to want to make it look like they did it. If you want to make it look like they did it, you put the body right up on the shore right out of the gate. Maybe you put it ten feet off the shore, but you're not going to put it so it's hidden in the water so nobody finds it, because how is that possibly framing Scott Peterson?

Laci was dumped off the Albany Bulb or Point Isabel. Conner was placed next to a walking track well away from the shore at Point Isabel.

The only reason these bodies were found, yeah, the defendant put them in the water with weights on them.

Then where is the evidence? Why is it all supposition?

The only reason they were found is not because of some frame-up job or somebody all of a sudden said let's raise them up and pin it on Scott Peterson. Why would anybody do that? They've gotten away with it for four months and now all of a sudden they're going to raise the bodies so suspicion will go to him?

They couldn’t leave them where they were after the four months. That would lead the cops directly to them.

No. I mean that's ridiculous. Ludicrous. It's not reasonable. It didn't happen.

Nonsense. It did – but there’s no need to assume a frame up by others, just a convenient dump site.

The only reason those bodies were found is remember what Dr. Cheng testified to.

There was an extremely low tide on February 12th. And there was a very violent storm on February 12th. That combination broke the, broke Laci Peterson free and sent her floating towards the shore.

No, the two events did NOT happen at the same time. Cheng got it wrong.

That's the only reason that those bodies were found at all. Not because of some magical frame-up job, or for any other reason.

Correct – for once.

And if that's the fact, and that's the evidence that was before you in this case, then that man's a murderer. It's as simple as that.

Simple but wrong.

Again, like I said, there's no mysteries in this case.

There are many. Where was Laci held from Dec 24th to her death in March? Who cut the baby out of her and why?

What was Laci wearing when she was found? She was wearing those pants which I showed you. And I'm not going to show you those autopsy pictures again. You know, I could hold those pictures up and prove it to you, but you saw it. If you want to see it again, absolutely look at it, but you saw this stuff.

She was wearing those pants, they were very frayed and degraded, of course. And they were in the normal position of wear.

Yes, the pants which were NOT the pants she wore to the salon.

So what does that tell us? She wasn't sexually assaulted. Nobody assaulted her and, you know, had her get dressed up again and throw her back in the Bay.

Evidence? Still none?

The other reason we know she wasn't sexually assaulted is there were no injuries at all to any of her genitalia.

Her bra was in its normal position of wear. So that's further evidence of that.

And, finally, her maternity panties were in the normal position of wear. All those things were found on her body.

And her panties were worn out in back – which showed she had worn them for many, many weeks.

What else do we know from her body? There was no vaginal birth in this case.

So it wasn't like somebody grabbed Laci to hold her for the baby. That did not happen.

Still not evidence – all speculation.

No vaginal birth. Her cervix was intact and closed. That means that Conner did not come out of the birth canal.

What else do we have? There's no tool marks, which means she wasn't dismembered.

No, all it means is that there is no proof she was dismembered, but also no proof she wasn’t.

There's no indication that she had been stabbed, that she had been cut. You know, dismembered. Her arms, I mean her legs, arms, or head had been cut off. No evidence of that whatsoever.

No evidence is the theme of this case. No evidence of anything. No cause of death. No proof of homicide. All inference and suggestion.

There was duct tape on her. So we know that whoever killed her, the duct tape was attached to her. I think it was running up one leg and her upper torso. So we know that whoever killed her used duct tape.

There were barnacles, the duct tape is important for a couple of reasons. One of the main ones is it obviously proves she was murdered, but secondly, it has barnacles on it.

Once again assumptions. But duct tape doesn’t prove WHO killed her.

Remember there were barnacles on the duct tape and there was barnacles on Laci's body itself. Both consistent with Laci, you know, obviously being in the marine environment.

For no more than one or two days. Nothing else can be assumed.

Now, why do I bring that up and tell you about it? Because remember all that testimony that we had about that big plastic TARGET bag that was found and, you know, the insinuation, you know, kind of from the defense, remember they called Officer Phillips who testified he smelled the bag, and I'll talk about that in a minute. But kind of the insinuation was that's somehow related to this crime.

Well, that TARGET bag had no barnacles on it at all. It was wrapped in some duct tape, but you remember from Pin Kyo, the criminalist's testimony, it didn't match the duct tape that was on Laci. That TARGET bag had no human tissue in it. No deposing fat. No nothing that you would have if Laci Peterson had been wrapped in that bag.

It only proves she wasn’t in the bag long, if at all. It doesn’t prove that Conner wasn’t in the bag when he was moved to the shore.

That bag didn't have anything to do with this case. The only reason it even came up was because Officer Phillips had this memory at the last minute that the bag smelled like Laci. That's what he said.

I believe him.

Well, you know, there's a couple things about that. First off, remember they ran a cadaver dog by the bag, and a dog's got a better nose than Officer Phillips, and that dog didn't hit on the bag.

Secondly, this is going to sound very crude, and I apologize for it, but Officer Phillips had been standing by Laci Peterson's body for I think the testimony was seven or seven and a half hours. You know, I'm surprised he could smell anything but Laci Peterson at that point. I mean it's unfortunate, like I said, I hate to put it in those terms, but maybe one that's a little more palatable. Kind of like when you go into a smoky bar. Even though you're not smoking, you walk out in an hour and that's all you smell is the smoke. You know, it's the same kind of phenomenon.

Once again Distaso is testifying with no basis in fact. If he wanted to bring this in he should have produced evidence or witnesses.