Day 12: Updates

5:00pm update: Adjournment

Lots happened this afternoon but the rain started and lightning has been spotted.  The TV guys folded their tents and I’m going to find a dry place too and bang out the wrap.  It should hit around 7:00pm-ish.

3:40pm Update

The afternoon session began with expected spirited cross of Bryan Waid, the MPD lead detective on the case. 

Zaborsky counsel Tom Connolly was up first and he did his best to pick apart any failings in the investigation Waid was heading up.  He first dove into the necessity of interviewing witnesses seperatly, suggesting the Thomases were done in tandem. 

AUSA Pat Martin was in his feet with constant objections, most of them being sustained against Connolly’s formation and foundations of his inquiries.  We learned that Waid interview EMT Jeff Baker at least twice.  Then things got wierd.

Connolly introduced a defense exhibit, photos from the August 16, 2006 edition of the Washington Post.  We’re not sure what the headlines were, but Judge Leibovitz glanced at it and said, “I didn’t know Hezbollah had anything to do with this case.”   Some much needed laughter followed.

Connolly asked if it was SOP to take pictures of any witness or suspect injuries. It is.  He then asked about one of the WaPo photos and if he saw any injuries on Zaborsky’s hands. Martin objected, sustained.

Then we got the first second mention of MPD Officer Diane Durham’s involvement in the case.  Based on a August 17 interview with Waid, she said she was the one who first turned on the patio lights at 1509 on the night of the murder. 

We heard that when Detective Lewis climbed up the patio trellises in his canvas of the backyard, no vines were damaged either.  That may have neutered the Waid contention about how he inspected the trellis and saw no damage.

We also learned that bikes were stolen from the backyard of 1509 in 2008, and that both the perp and bikes made it over the fence twice.  Another Swann Street burglary took place via the alley too.

Then things got weirder. Tom Connoly played a video of he and two others scaling the fence at 1509. 

More on that later and more on Grimm’s aggressive cross of Waid and the videotapes of Sarah Morgan’s MPD interviews in which she tells detectives how bad the crime was in her former neighborhood.

1:30pm Update – Lunch Recess

The morning session continued with more playback of the defendants’ videotaped statements; Zaborsky’s was next and the interview was conducted by Detective Waid.  I’ll summarize, so please read along with the transcript. Zaborsky told of the night’s events:

Coming home from Dulles, going to the gym to see Price, dinner with the steaks being interrupted by news that his son lost a tooth and got the training wheels of his bike taken off, watering the plants, making the guestroom bed with Ward, watching Project Runway, the Sudafed & Unisom, going to sleep around 11:00pm, being awoken by a “low breathy grunt,” the discovery of Robert and his 9-1-1 call.

Waid asked him how an intruder might scale the back fence. Zaborsky guessed using the Beemer as a launch pad. That was it for that twenty minute portion. 

Waid retook the stand and Pat Martin quizzed him about his return to 1509 on the afternoon of the 3rd and the further processing of the scene and his follow on innvestigation of the home, inside and out.

Waid said he saw no signs of disturbance in either the patio or parking area; the delicate plants and trellis vines were not disturbed, no footprints in the planters or dirt and that no cobwebs on the trees or on either side of the fence,  one attachedto the shed appeared broken.

Waid told Martin about the BlackBerrys  (Robert’s and Ward’s), and the home and office PC of Price’s that was seized.  Aside from Robert’s device, Waid said all the other ones were analyzed by the Secret Service and results were returned to him.  He was not asked, nor did he volunteer what the results were.

Martin next asked Waid what else he did as part of his investigation to follow up on whether the crime was the work of a known or suspected burglar or other criminal, in other words, efforts he made to chase down the intruder theory. 

Waid said he alerted his colleagues at MPD, in particular the Robbery and Burglary squad, the narcotics team and put the word out for others in the department to work their street sources.  None of those efforts turned up any leads. 

Of the latent fingerprints recovered from the guestroom, one on the other nightstand and one of the window sill, were compared against known prints in the criminal database and no matches came up.  Martin’s direct was complete.

Judge Leibovitz called for a recess from 12:50pm – 1:00pm, and the triple cross of Detective Waid is expected to start when the afternoon session begins.

12:00 Update:

The morning session got underway at 10:00am with MPD lead Detective Bryan Waid retaking the stand.

The first order of business was further playback of the videotaped interviews conducted by the MPD in the early morning hours after Robert’s murder.  A portion of Ward’s tape was played with Waid conducting it. 

Waid’s style differed significantly from his colleagues Wagner and Norris’ heavy-handed approach.  Waid came off as freindly to Ward, easy going, understanding and more of an advocate rather than an inquisitor.

At one point Waid took a call and excused himself from the drab interview room.  The camera was trained on Ward, seated in the corner, his legs together and ankles crossed.  At times Ward’s head was buried in his hands.  Minute after minute went by with no motion in the room, reminiscent of the experimental Warhol film, Sleep.

Next up on the big screen was Price’s interview Waid and that was followed by a portion of Detective Brian Kasul’s interview with him.

Again, watching these tapes if far different from reading the weighty transcripts.  Some lines are easily passed over while reading them, but when heard, some tend to stand out.  In particular, Price’s unprompted remark to Kasul, “We had no chance after the cops got there, that we could get together with our stories.”

9:00am Update: The Robin Givhan Edition

Pardon Our Dust

Today’s session kicks off with the continued direct of MPD Detective Bryan Waid. 

At the close of business yesterday, AUSA T. Patrick Martin was walking him through his first recollections and observations from his inital walk through and canvas of the crime scene at 1509 Swann.  The defense cross of Waid could get feisty. 

Longtime case watchers will remeber that it was Detective Waid that signed the original Dylan Ward affidavit back on October 27, 2008. 

Other government witnesses we still expect to see include another friend of Robert’s from the W&M Tribe, Jason Torchinsky, and retired FBI G-MAN and blood trace expert, Robert Spaulding. 

Catch-22: There was some comment overnight about Tara Adams Ragone’s emotional and powerful testimony yesterday, and the fact that she was not asked about Joe Price’s ‘Catch-22’ email that he sent her about a year after the murder.  The email was first reported in Harry Jaffe’s Washingtonian Magazine opus on the case.

We’ve seen the email in its entirety, and while the language is indeed curious, it does not reveal a smoking gun at all.  Like much of what we’ve seen in this case and trial, Price’s email to Ragone was plenty ambiguous, and it did not come off as an admission of anything, let alone guilt.

The difference between Ragone’s testimony and Sarah Morgan’s was stark.  Ragone could not share enough; she was confident and forthright, while Morgan, although emotional too at times, seemed halting, cautious and hesitant.  Morgan came off as one who’s still clearly playing for the home team.

Stringers:  Also in the comments, we’re seeing some first-person reporting of the sessions.   We ask that anyone who’s in court and wishes, to introduce themselves and maybe kibitz with us in the hallway a bit during the breaks.  Don’t be surprised if you walk away with a writing assignment, however.

While on the subject of trial reporting, we’ve falling behind somewhat in updating our media page with the links to some crackerjack reporting over the past few days.  The local TV affiliates, Post, City Paper, Examiner, Washingtonian continue to turn out every day that court is in session.  We’ll update it soon.

Yesterday, an item on the trial even turned up in Human Events (at one time Ronald Reagan’s favorite publication) of all places.  And speaking of the Right, it was mentioned in the comments last week that National Review’s Jonah Goldberg posted something on the trial.  If anyone has that link, please send.

Hazy, Hot and Hopsack:  We’ve spent so much time in the Moultrie courthouse that the attorneys are all starting to look alike, save for Bernie Grimm of course.  Inside room 310 yesterday, it was hard to tell the difference between AUSA Glenn Kirschner and Victor Zaborsky counsel Tom Connolly.  Both were smartly turned out in nearly matching summer suits.  But when it comes to courtroom attire, maybe WRC-TV’s Pat Collins has the best idea, cargo pants.

220 comments for “Day 12: Updates

  1. Kate
    06/03/2010 at 9:04 AM

    Thank you, Editors for your clarification of the “Catch 22” email.

    Greatly appreciated by all,
    Kate

    • Dee
      06/03/2010 at 12:04 PM

      I have to bring up a point here that I don’t think has been questioned. Was it typical for Robert Wone to shower in the evening? If not, I think it is odd that he would shower twice (morning and night) when he is a guest in someone’s house. His wife would know his habits–personally, if someone told me my husband showered before he went to bed it would raise a red flag. I am beginning to think that he was put in the shower so the blood washed down the drain. Were the drains checked?

      • Bea
        06/03/2010 at 12:39 PM

        Dee, Kathy Wone testified that ordinarily Robert did NOT shower in the evening.

      • Not Skippy, Not Sprout
        06/03/2010 at 1:05 PM

        Keep in mind, it _was_ August. I don’t normally shower at night, but if its been a particularly sticky day, and I’ve been walking from the Metro…

        Now, the drains were checked, and as I recall, the cadaver dogs did signal the presence of blood.

        • mia
          06/03/2010 at 3:29 PM

          I agree with with one. But what makes me feel odd is Robert was found laying on the top of the sheet but Kathy said he normally would sleep under a sheet. I do the same thing and sleeping on the top of the sheet without any covering would make me feel really uncomfortable, even in summer. And I assume they should have air-conditioning on of course.

          • dee
            06/03/2010 at 7:12 PM

            Agree! People who sleep under covers sleep under covers and people who shower in the morning, shower in the morning.

            if I remember correctly, 4,000 IU (can’t remember measurement used) was missing from Robert Wone’s body. The blood was not in the house. Blood was detected by cadavers in the drain. I don’t recall anyone asking the housemates what happened to the blood in the interviews. The intruder must have snuck in, walked up the wooden stairs, stabbed Robert (with no known motive), cleaned up the blood, turned on the water, washed it down the drain, walked down the wooden stairs, sound the alarm–at which time the housemates heard a noise…utterly impossible!! V, D, and J know exactly what happened to Robert Wone’s blood. God Bless his wife, parents, siblings and all the people who loved him.

      • Bill
        06/03/2010 at 1:39 PM

        I don’t think it is particularly relevant what Robert’s shower habits were when he was home. He was staying in their house for the first time and he may have taken his shower at night so as not to interrupt the routine of the three who lived at the house.

    • deduce
      06/03/2010 at 12:52 PM

      I believe the ‘tell’ in the Catch 22 email is when Joe says, ‘they didn’t even pursue the intruder theory.’ Theory? That is not how you describe the situation when you have an actual intruder in the picture.

      • cinnamon
        06/03/2010 at 1:21 PM

        It could also just be ‘lawyer speak’

        • Carolina
          06/03/2010 at 1:57 PM

          That’s how I took it, too, BUT! Try it yourself. Imagine you were telling someone who had not given you 100% blind support. Would you say, “They aren’t even *looking* for a the killer!” or “They don’t believe us and they’re not following through on other evidence,” or something that would be more definitive in terms of it being The Truth?

      • ML
        06/06/2010 at 3:12 AM

        One (particularly a lawyer) might use the phrase “intruder theory” because none of the housemates claim to have seen the intruder. They are assuming it had to be an intruder because they maintain it wasn’t them. (Not to say I believe their story, just that the language Price used in the e-mail does not raise a red flag.)

  2. Aquanetta
    06/03/2010 at 9:05 AM

    HA HA. Funny comment about the writing assignments. 🙂

  3. Kate
    06/03/2010 at 9:28 AM

    On the lighter side here:

    Just watched Pat Collins’ broadcast report from yesterday and he’s sportin’ a business shirt and tie, to go along with those practical cargo pants. Please tell me he didn’t round out the ensemble with sandals …. and socks.

    Fashion Police, please get thee to the courthouse!

    • Vandy
      06/03/2010 at 11:09 AM

      The Robin Givhan Edition. TOO FUNNY. Luvs it.

      Kate, did you mean “courture house” instead of “courthouse”? Tee-hee.

      • Kate
        06/03/2010 at 11:49 AM

        Now that’s funny, Vandy. I wish I had thought of it!

    • Ivan
      06/03/2010 at 11:21 AM

      Victor looked very stylish in a navy pin stripe suit. He appears the most relaxed of the group. JP appears stressed and Dylan seems a bit shell-shocked but that may be his norm.

      • Kate
        06/03/2010 at 11:53 AM

        Ivan – many thanks for your eyewitness perspective. I’m not surprised to read that Victor is the best “turned out”. In his former position as a marketing/promotional gent, he’d certainly be dressed for success.

        But I am surprised to hear that he appears to be the most relaxed.

        • Ivan
          06/03/2010 at 12:00 PM

          Perhaps relaxed is not the best word. I don’t know how anyone could be truly relaxed in this situation. He seems to look around the courtroom the most.

          • NYer
            06/03/2010 at 12:03 PM

            One trial attendee wrote the other day that Vic had given him/her the evil eye/staredown.
            So maybe Vic’s simply the most confident.

          • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
            06/03/2010 at 12:21 PM

            Is Victor, perhaps, the most calm?

            • Ivan
              06/03/2010 at 12:43 PM

              I think Victor is too emotional to be considered calm. Perhaps he projects more of a “que sera sera” attitude which would imply confidence. During one of the breaks he walked around the open sunlight area neat the escalators – JP on the other hand didn’t leave the room. He seems like he could be quite the charmer.

      • Carolina
        06/03/2010 at 1:59 PM

        I find Victor very handsome. If he wasn’t involved in all this, I’d have given him a place to fall if Dyl had kicked him from the nest. /needless TMI

        • Cecily
          06/03/2010 at 2:36 PM

          I think many people think or at least thought Victor to be the nicest of the 3 and I still can’t imagine why he is in that relationship. I guess even men, and smart, successfule, good-looking at that, can fall prey to dominant partners. I don’t think this trouple thing was his idea.

    • josephina
      06/03/2010 at 4:39 PM

      Oh, come on, what’s wrong with sandals and socks?

      • ladyg
        06/03/2010 at 5:17 PM

        it’s just sooo wrong, on so many levels. where’s the fashion guru, when you need them. (smile if you can).

  4. Vandy
    06/03/2010 at 9:54 AM

    Eds,
    Do you think the MPD (i.e. Chief Lanier) will ever address the sloppy job that the police and detectives did in this case? Any word on this?

    • Bill
      06/03/2010 at 10:00 AM

      Do you actually think that any function of the DC government would take responsibility for any negative action???? Where has it ever been done before? Do you actually think Chief Lanier would take the stand and say, “we really did screw up here and could have done a far better job. The memory of Robert Wone and the rights of the defendants both deserve better police work from the District.”

    • Michael
      06/03/2010 at 12:31 PM

      Chief Lanier’s standard response when asked about the Robert Wone case continues to be that she cannot comment because it is an “active investigation”.

  5. Agatha
    06/03/2010 at 10:30 AM

    Deceit on so many levels appears to be the norm within the Price network of family, friends and colleagues.

    In JP’s first interview – he says that Sarah Morgan is his tenant. Yes – on one hand that is true. However, more of the truth is that she is a fourth member of this family. Going on vacation with a ‘tenant’ is a bit of a stretch. She was a regular member of this household – watching tv, having dinner …etc.

    Her lawyer’s advice to not talk with JP, DW, VZ is more for her protection – to avoid being included into the current charges of obstruction of justice. There is absolutely no way that she didn’t know what was going on in that house. The fact that she is a woman in a house of gay men was another cloud of illusion. Why would the police suspect she knew anything … her appearance and demeanor suggest otherwise and JP says she is just a ‘tenant’ giving lots of distance between the three men and her. In my opinion, she is damn lucky she is not sitting at the defense table herself.

    JP’s calls to William and Mary alumni to tell his side of the story before the news reaches everyone is another dedicated effort to deceive. The first ‘story’ told is usually the one remembered by anyone. Think of the rules of speechmaking – make your point in the first five minutes – or anything you say after twenty minutes …no one will remember the details.

    To have Lisa G. another member of this William and Mary alumni send Defense documents to the group is another effort to deceive. Horrifying to think that she doesn’t even consider the death of another friend from William and Mary – who is brutally killed in the supposed protection of JP. As someone in the media business – why weren’t there a million questions. A simple question would be: How could Robert Wone have been killed in your house and you not hear a thing? or even – If Robert Wone had stayed with her … none of this would have happened. What really happened that night?

    Of course, our legal system is innocent until proven guilty. However, as much as the legal system works to prosecute and defend this case – it relies upon people to step forward and tell the truth – willingly, immediately and without hesitation. How can the police department do their job – if people obfuscate the truth.

    It makes me ill that taxpayers are spending millions on this case – so that affluent people with a displaced sense of entitlement connected to this case can manipulate and avoid the consequences of their actions – this is a second travesty after the first – the brutal killing of an innocent person.

    I truly hope the upcoming prosecution witnesses will restore a sense of humanity within this bunch.

    • William
      06/03/2010 at 11:31 AM

      All this talk of family reminds me of the Manson family – another “family” that perpetrated horrors with no reason. Was it really a coincidence that SM wasn’t home that night? Could someone have told her to make herself scarce?

      • Elizabeth
        06/03/2010 at 8:29 PM

        I had absolutely the same thought regarding the word “family.” Chilling.

    • NYer
      06/03/2010 at 11:33 AM

      “There is absolutely no way that she didn’t know what was going on in that house.”
      Maybe she did, maybe she didn’t. Sarah testified under oath that her evening away from 1509 was done “on the fly.” This, as well as her testimony in general, seems to distance her from any sort of plot/conspiracy.

    • NYer
      06/03/2010 at 11:52 AM

      Another thought- while it’s conceivable any of the three men would lie to police at VCB to protect each other, I find it hard to imagine Sarah would lie under oath in open court to preserve a friendship that, in effect, no longer exists. So while anything is possible, and her testimony could very well be false, I have the feeling that she really does not know a thing about what happened that night.

    • Bill 2
      06/03/2010 at 12:04 PM

      I can’t help but wonder if Sarah Morgan has any life away from gay males. Does she cling to the Swann St. “family” and the other gay couple simply because she has no others in her life? I can’t help but think that she knows more but doesn’t want to alienate her Swann St. family.

      • JackStar
        06/03/2010 at 1:45 PM

        Well, if that is the case she would feel right at home on this site.

      • susan
        06/03/2010 at 8:37 PM

        Bill,

        I get the same impression.

    • Not Skippy, Not Sprout
      06/03/2010 at 1:10 PM

      Lisa Goddard was the unofficial PR machine for the “family” from Day 1. Apparently, she was making call after call from outside the police station to the W&M network (I found out from someone who had been called by someone Goddard called).

      • Bill Orange
        06/03/2010 at 4:50 PM

        Please. She was not an “unofficial PR machine”. She was calling people to tell them that one of their friends had just died. That seems like a pretty logical thing to do. What would you have expected her to do? NOT call people?

        • Not Skippy, Not Sprout
          06/03/2010 at 10:04 PM

          Lisa Goddard is a professional journalist with years of experience in how to get a story spread with a particular slant, BO (and where’s your MO?). Calling friends is one thing. Calling people attached to William and Mary with whom Robert had had limited contact in the decade between his graduation and his murder is something else entirely.

  6. Lyn
    06/03/2010 at 10:43 AM

    The city paper has Ragone’s quote as “There’s a difference between tampering with a crime scene and wiping away blood because you’re freaking out.”

  7. Ivan
    06/03/2010 at 11:56 AM

    I don’t mean to intrude on your space. Regrets if I did. How can I tell who the editors are? I may be there Monday pm but we’ll see.
    Thank you for your good work/efforts.

  8. Aquanetta
    06/03/2010 at 12:05 PM

    Lightside Comment: Does anyone else think that we need Nancy Grace all over this? I love her and would love to hear some of her colorful comments and facial expressions. I can visualize it now as she say’s PLAYMAT. 🙂

    • Carolina
      06/03/2010 at 2:17 PM

      If only there had been an adorable Caucasian toddler killed in the next room! I would pay good money to hear her say, PLAYMAAAT!

      • josephina
        06/03/2010 at 4:44 PM

        I am ashamed to admit that I watch so much Nancy Grace and I wish she’d do this–but I’ve never seen her do a death of a man. It’s always, women who kill children and men who kill women. And it doesn’t have to only be a caucasion baby. Has anyone ever seen her do a man? They only count when they die in war–like she has them in the end. Still, I don’t really care about the BDSM stuff, but I’d love to see her roll her eyes over all the lies…She does cut through the sh*t.

  9. AnnaZed
    06/03/2010 at 12:13 PM

    “…In my opinion, she is damn lucky she is not sitting at the defense table herself.”

    Heavy stuff, something I try to partake of only in moderation, yet Sarah’s protestations that she coincidentally made herself scarce that night do not sit easily with me.

    • Carolina
      06/03/2010 at 2:19 PM

      I was a little surprised by the eds take on her testimony vs. Tara’s. I wonder if the “split” was, as someone suggested, at the insistence of legal advice.

  10. Hoya Loya
    06/03/2010 at 12:16 PM

    Here is my updated “scorecard.” Thanks for all the feedback last week, much of which was considered in this revision. I also reordered the items to try to give a sense of a possible “narrative” by both sides. Again, I’m trying to keep track of the facts established by the prosecution as well as any contrary facts or doubt cast by the defense. The shorter defense list does not reflect a lack of success as the defense can only “score” on cross at the moment and some of the doubt it casts can outweigh several prosecution points.

    The prosecution has established that:
    1) Kathy and Robert were happily married and Kathy knew about the visit to 1509
    2) Robert arrived at 1509 around 10:30
    3) Neighbors hears a scream between 11:00 and 11:35
    4) The 911 call was made at 11:49
    5) Victor’s 911 call cited “one of our knives” and Joe applying pressure to wounds with a towel
    6) EMTS saw Victor crying on the stoop, a non-responsive Dylan, Joe sitting on Robert’s bed, not applying pressure
    7) Robert was stabbed three times but there was little blood at the scene or on the towel
    8) Robert appeared to be dead already when the EMTs arrived
    9) Joe called Kathy to tell her “Robert was stabbed in the back”
    10) Striation marks were observed on Robert’s torso by an EMT
    11) There were needle marks on Robert not made by the EMTs or ER attendants
    12) The stab wounds indicate that Robert was motionless when stabbed
    13) Robert was missing more blood than was accounted for at the scene
    14) Robert lived for up to ten minutes after being stabbed (i.e. did not die from tamponade)
    15) The back of Robert’s shirt was very bloody.
    16) The bed sheets had two small blood stains
    17) There was no “cast-off” blood traces from a knife being pulled from a wound
    18) Joe made stabbing motions while telling Kathy what he heard the night of the murder
    19) Joe told Tara Ragone that he removed the knife from Robert’s chest
    20) Joe told Tara Ragone “There’s a big difference between tampering and wiping away some blood, freaking out about a crime scene.”
    21) Expert Deedrick’s tests suggested that the knife had been wiped down with a towel
    22) Deedrick’s fiber tests suggest that the knife found may not be the murder weapon
    23) The defendants said there was an intruder who entered through the unlocked kitchen door
    24) The defendants said they heard the door chime and grunts
    25) Nothing was stolen from the house
    26) The police did not find any evidence of an intruder, to the extent they searched for same
    27) Dirt around and on top of the rear fence was undisturbed
    28) Michael Price missed his phlebotomy class for the first time on the night of the murder
    29) Michael Price attended Robert’s funeral (comments to police admissible, but not yet in)
    30) Joe told Sarah Morgan that Michael did not have a key or security codes, but he did
    31) Sarah Morgan was part of the 1509 “family” raising doubts about her objectivity
    32) The defendants would place washed, overturned garbage cans next to a shed that was four to five feet from the fence

    The defense has:
    1) Raised doubts about the knife – the ME couldn’t rule it out as the weapon
    2) Raised doubts about the extent of the search for evidence of an intruder
    3) Raised doubts about Detective Wagner’s objectivity due to homophobia
    4) Raised doubts about expert Deedrick’s methodology and findings
    5) Established, via Sarah Morgan, that the defendants were a “cohesive unit”
    6) Established, via Sarah Morgan, that the defendants often left the doors unlocked
    7) Established, via Sarah Morgan, that there had been a recent break-in on the street
    8) Established that Tara Ragone has read about the case, including this blog
    9) Established that Michael Price was only being trained to draw blood, not to give injections

    • can'tstopreading
      06/03/2010 at 12:55 PM

      Has anyone considered a theory that someone may have drawn blood from Mr. Wone prior to the stabbing, which may have incapacitated him and resulted in less blood at the scene?

      • Ivan
        06/03/2010 at 12:58 PM

        Yes, I’ve held that theory for some time now. With that amount of blood loss Robert would (1) probably go into shock and (2) the (hate to use the word though) “mess” would be less.

      • Fascinating
        06/03/2010 at 3:25 PM

        I know nothing about phlebotomy, but isn’t it weird that Michael Price took the class, and that Robert Wone has unexplained marks in various places on his body?

        But a quick Wikipedia search put a damper on that theory — blood would have had to been drawn from a vein, which it was not (top of the foot, the neck, and one other place — was it Wone’s hand?)

        For a couple of days there, I was seriously thinking Michael Price, probably drugged out, could have committed the murder and stuck Wone with his phlebotomy needles. But I just don’t think there was enough time for that.

        I’m still reading the trial reports, waiting for something to become more clear or for some juicy details to emerge that have previously not been revealed.

        • Bill Orange
          06/03/2010 at 4:52 PM

          Um, you can draw blood from all of those sites. There are veins in all of those places. If you don’t believe me, just take a look at your hands and feet.

    • Bill
      06/03/2010 at 1:43 PM

      Not bad since the defense hasn’t even put on its case.

      • Bea
        06/03/2010 at 2:32 PM

        ‘Not bad’ meaning . . .

        Thinking about the defense case, I’m guessing it will be experts saying that the knife at the scene was the murder weapon and that the lack of blood is ‘normal’.

        Whether either of those two suppositions will be believable, let alone accepted as truth by the Judge, remains to be seen (logic weighing against both – knife blade length, towel fibers, and having to hit the heart first with the one ‘reasonable’ explanation for lack of blood).

        But what will the defense do about the timeline? Hard to make that 19-49 minute fracture go away in view of Joe’s odd comment (posited by Eds today) that there wasn’t time to concoct a story, Joe’s admonition to Victor that ‘Robert was our friend, right?’ and Joe’s stink eye when Dylan began with how he/we heard a grunt (since Dylan himself did not hear a grunt). Too, the 911 call that allegedly came immediately upon discovering Robert (within one minute) in which Victor said “we think an intruder” and “one of our knives”, the continuing use of this wording by all three, and the illusive use of “11:43” as a repeated mistake.

        I realize my opinion and its bias is showing through but how does the defense begin to try dismantling these things (forgetting that the fence top was covered in undisturbed debris, the unlikelihood of an intruder scaling a 9 foot gate not once but twice, how no one heard anything but a low grunt yet Sarah could hear people on the stairs from the basement)?

        When you add in what is likely to be Jason Torchinsky’s testimony about Joe’s pre-funeral call to persuade Kathy to waive her attorney client privilege with Torchinsky, it doesn’t add up that Joe & Co. were simply mourning their friend’s murder – Joe, at least, was in overdrive mode, and not directed at finding Robert’s murderer-the-intruder. When you think the cops are doing a poor job of investigation, particularly when the murder happened in your home and you feel a certain desire bordering on obligation to do right by your friend and his widow, this is how you behave? Why not knock on your neighbors’ doors to see if anything was missed; why not pool money to hire a very good investigator; why not make appointments with the detectives to see what else you can do to help?

        It’s not a normal reaction to circle the wagons to find out what the cops asked of the widow when your friend has yet to be buried.

        • Bill
          06/03/2010 at 3:13 PM

          I understand your very human reactions and, of course, they all make sense. It may be plausible to think that Joe was acting “like a lawyer” knowing that he and his housemates were the assumed criminals. For me, thus far, the prosecution’s case is built on a lot of circumstantial evidence. In particular, how they could so quickly clean the entire house while building a case of plausible deniability in a few minutes.

          • Carolina
            06/03/2010 at 3:53 PM

            Again, I offer you a playmat to help with that quick clean up. Of all the things inventoried in Ward’s room, we don’t see one mentioned. That, I must say, is very, very unusual considering their S&M bent.

          • Bill 2
            06/03/2010 at 3:56 PM

            If they go free after this trial and need dollars to pay their lawyers, they could start a Jiffy Maids business and really clean up.

          • Lynn
            06/03/2010 at 4:01 PM

            The timing of all this bothers me. If the scream was as late as 11:35 (per #3 above), how could the three have cleaned scene, showered, and made up story in 14 minutes?

            Unless these guys were Dexter fans and had the scene covered in plastic, which Michael carried off. Which would put Joe’s comment about it being like TV in an even creepier light.

            But the BIG thing I don’t get is WHY they would have killed him so fast and called the police so quickly. Impossible to put myself into the mindset of someone who would torture & kill a friend for fun, but if you were to do such a bizarre thing, wouldn’t you want to take your time with it? Seems counterproductive to kill him right after he goes to bed. But if he wasn’t dead (or at least stabbed), why would Victor (who must have been used to their S/M antics) have screamed? So question 1: why did they kill him so fast?

            On to question 2: why did they call the police so quickly? It seems that the working theory is that Victor’s scream was closer to 11 and that Price/Ward had to clean up and come up with story quickly because of scream. OK. But if they waited 30-45 minutes, wouldn’t it have been obvious that the neighbors hadn’t called the police? (And even if neighbor recalled scream the next day, couldn’t they have said they were asleep and didn’t hear?) I read the theories above about a switch from dumping body to calling police. But, couldn’t they have simply waited and called it in in the morning? Claiming they discovered him when he didn’t turn up for breakfast?

            I have only been following this for a few weeks, so I am sure I have missed many discussions. Maybe someone can shed light on this?

            • Bill 2
              06/03/2010 at 4:06 PM

              You’re saying, “If the scream was as late as 11:35,” but the scream could have been fifteen minutes prior. Further, the scream could have taken place after they were already carrying playmats and towels out the door.

              • lil
                06/03/2010 at 7:20 PM

                Perhaps the murder was premeditated

            • DonnaH
              06/03/2010 at 8:02 PM

              As to your question #1, “why did they kill him so fast?”–most posters here who’ve postulated the involvement of house member(s) in Robert’s death also have hypothesized that the murder was not premeditated, but was the result of their thinking Robert had died from an overdose of whatever drugs they were injecting him with. They presumably decided on the subsequent stabbing (and possibly dumping the body) to minimize the chance that an overdose would be suspected once the body was found.

            • Eagle
              06/03/2010 at 8:46 PM

              Let’s not forget that one of the officials (an EMT, I think,) having just arrived on the scene, noted that Robert’s body was cold and clammy. After death, body temperatures decrease only .75 to 1.25 degrees per hour and thus his body should not have been cold and clammy.

              • susan
                06/03/2010 at 8:54 PM

                I didn’t see that statement by an EMT, but if drugs were administered, it’s possible they altered the body temperature.

                • lawmed
                  06/04/2010 at 7:42 PM

                  Nice try…but not possible for any drug which would have been administered. And, as I said, cold and clammy is the EXPECTED state.

              • lawmed
                06/04/2010 at 7:40 PM

                That is not correct.
                ALL hypovolemic shock (shock from loss of blood) patients are cold and clammy. It is one of the hallmark signs and independent of passage of time. All of your blood vessels constrict and your blood is shunted to impotant organs like the heart and brain, while diverted from peripheral circulation including blood flow to the skin, arms, legs. Low blood flow equals cold and clammy which actually may not represent any change in core body temperature.

                • Bill Orange
                  06/04/2010 at 7:51 PM

                  Hmmm. You know, I didn’t really think “cold and clammy” meant all that much when the EMT testified, but your comment made me think about it a bit more–I wonder if the ER staff got a core temperature on him when he came in. In addition to the chest tube outputs, that’s a number I’d really like to see.

          • Bill Orange
            06/03/2010 at 4:53 PM

            Who said anything about the entire house?

          • KKinCA
            06/03/2010 at 6:35 PM

            Bill – It seems like ALL of the prosecution’s evidence is circumstantial. It’s been a while since I took criminal law, but I don’t believe that is uncommon in criminal cases, unless there is direct evidence of the commission of a crime, such as a credible witness who observed the crime.

            • Bea
              06/03/2010 at 7:16 PM

              I’d hazard a guess that most convictions are secured on the weight of circumstantial evidence.

            • lil
              06/03/2010 at 7:23 PM

              I don’t necessarily think they’d need physical evidence in this case, lots of circumstantial evidence could be enough to prove obstruction

              • KKinCA
                06/03/2010 at 7:29 PM

                Thanks Bea and Lil. Nice to know that my memory isn’t too bad! 🙂

              • Bea
                06/03/2010 at 7:39 PM

                A lot of physical evidence is circumstantial – use of these in common parlance is confusing. To use the oh-so-reliable Wikipedia:

                “[E]xamples of circumstantial evidence are fingerprint, blood analysis or DNA analysis of the evidence found at the scene of a crime. These types of evidence may strongly point to a certain conclusion when taken into consideration with other facts, but if not directly witnessed by someone when the crime was committed, they are still considered to be circumstantial in nature. . . A popular misconception is that circumstantial evidence is less valid or less important than direct evidence. This is only partly true: direct evidence is popularly, but mistakenly, considered more powerful. In fact many successful criminal prosecutions often rely largely or entirely on circumstantial evidence . . . Speaking about Timothy McVeigh’s trial, University of Michigan law professor Robert Precht said, ‘Circumstantial evidence can be, and often is much more powerful than direct evidence’. The 2005 murder trial of Scott Peterson trial was another high-profile conviction based heavily on circumstantial evidence.

                Indeed, the common metaphor for the strongest possible evidence in any case—the “smoking gun”—is in fact an example of proof based on circumstantial evidence.

                In practice, circumstantial evidence has an advantage over direct evidence in that it is more difficult to suppress or fabricate.”

                In a CONSPIRACY case such as this, I have trouble understanding what direct evidence people expect to get unless the defendants testify against one another.

                • susan
                  06/03/2010 at 9:02 PM

                  Thanks, Bea.

                  and as I understand it, circumstantial evidence can also include a person or persons behavior, etc., like a verbal threat, spending an inordinate amt. of money for a crime where $ was taken, etc., etc.

                  So what you wrote makes a lot of sense in terms of the circumstantial evidence the prosecution has in this case.

                  • Bea
                    06/03/2010 at 9:47 PM

                    Yep – the lawyers here have heard this a thousand times but it helps with ‘direct’ evidence AND (more often) to show why a lawyer never asks a question he/she doesn’t know the answer to. In a criminal trial for a man charged with biting off another man’s ear, the defense attorney questions a witness who came along after the fact.

                    “Isn’t it true that you never saw my client bite off the man’s ear?”

                    “Yes,” he answers.

                    “Why on earth would you believe that he did?” the defense counsel asks with irritation.

                    “Because I saw him spit it out.”

                    Direct evidence of seeing the ear leave the mouth. Circumstantial evidence that he bit it off.

                • Kate
                  06/03/2010 at 9:11 PM

                  Thanks for the great info, Bea
                  … not to mention all that typing!

                  I always thought that items such as finger prints, blood, DNA were called “physical evidence” and had their own category.

                  I’m getting smarter now.

                  Many thanks,
                  Kate

    • Carolina
      06/03/2010 at 2:35 PM

      I have a knife question.

      The ME said she is often asked but cannot say whether one knife is a murder weapon.

      What does that mean? Is it:

      A. She cannot say if a SPECIFIC knife is THE murder weapon, but can say if it is consistent with the wounds? One assumes that unlike ballistics, there is no “fingerprint” with knives, although they may have specific patterns such as a broken tip, serrated edge, length and width of blade, etc. It would be hard to discern which of two pristine knives made a particular wound.

      Or is it,

      B. She cannot differentiate between any two knives when it comes to murder weapons. Shown a 10″ knife and an 8″, she would not be able to give an informed opinion on which was responsible for the wound.

      • New Alias
        06/03/2010 at 4:10 PM

        I believe she meant “A” – she can’t say if a specific knife is THE murder weapon. But she can say if it is possible, or impossible, that a specific knife is the murder weapon. I believe she testified that she wrote in her report that she could not exclude the knife that was found on the scene; the idea that the knife that was found was not the actual murder weapon did not come from her.

    • BenFranklin
      06/03/2010 at 3:25 PM

      You make an early, compelling case for acquittal or dismissal.

      Michael Price won’t float as the murderer. It’s just another desperate turd the prosecution dropped to foul the water.

      9-14 are not facts but opinions of a discredited non-certified ME chasing evidence for the detectives’ theories: the worst kind of science!

      Can’t wait for Waid’s triple cross & the defense presentation.

      Innocent. Innocent. Innocent.

      • Carolina
        06/03/2010 at 3:56 PM

        Potato salad goes bad all on its own, no matter how nice its friends are.

        • Bill Orange
          06/03/2010 at 4:54 PM

          But before it goes bad, it tastes really good!

      • Elizabeth
        06/04/2010 at 12:26 AM

        What desperate turd are you referring to? Does it float? While there is much speculation on this blog, as is appropriate, what is the prosecution doing to “float Michael Price as the murderer?”

    • susan
      06/03/2010 at 8:46 PM

      1. I thought one of the three’s testimony states that VZ didn’t make it all the way down the stairs and into the room before Price told him to go back and make the call. If that’s the case how did he identify it as one of their knives?

      2. That “low grunting” sound. It was both a low grunting sound AND “loud”? And this woke him up?

      What seems to be the more believable story is that he indeed heard the low grunting sounds. Because that’s probably the sound R. Wone made after being stabbed. But he couldn’t say he heard that from the third floor because he couldn’t hear something like that from that distance. So he made it “loud”; and he had to use the low grunting sound because that is the only sound he would, at that moment in his life, at that time, be sure that a dying, stabbed man would make.

      • Leo
        06/04/2010 at 12:30 AM

        And Dylan heard a high-pitched sound.

  11. NM
    06/03/2010 at 12:17 PM

    Sarah came of as either completely biddable (tractable) or lying. She claimed she only asked what had happened once – the morning of August 3rd, at Cosi, when the group was sitting together. She (or someone) asked Joe what had happened and Joe told his story about the intruder/burglar. Prosecution asked Sarah if she had asked any further questions of Joe. She said no. Had she asked Victor? She said no. Had she asked Dylan? She said no.

    Huh?

    According to her, she never followed up with any additional questions – not then, not later in the day, not ever. No ‘do you think it could have been —‘ ? Then or later she never asked Victor or Dylan directly what they heard or saw. Apparently, her curiosity ended when the Word of Joe came down at breakfast.

    Its not like what happened was none of her business. She lived there!

    Either she’s lying or the most docile, uncurious, biddable person alive.

    • NM
      06/03/2010 at 12:18 PM

      Sorry, meant to be “Sarah came off as..”

    • Casual Observer
      06/03/2010 at 1:05 PM

      Sarah is not biddable or tractable; Sarah is very smart, very loyal, and completely law-abiding. She would never participate in a cover-up, nor would she lie to protect anyone. But she would definitely be smart enough not to put herself in a compromising position by asking any questions.

      I can imagine that she heard the trouple’s story, recognized the nightmare that was coming, and took her lawyer’s advice to get as far away as possible from those guys and that house.

      • Liz
        06/03/2010 at 2:01 PM

        How would you know about Sarah? Just because she has no criminal record, doesn’t mean she never lies to protect her family. Well, I agree with NM. It sounds weird Sarah has never asked her “family” what really happened. Does she even know how the intruder theory goes as suggested by her family? I’m not saying she’s not smart (There is no way I would know if she is smart), but I would assume she would more likely to choose to protect her family.

        • Nelly
          06/03/2010 at 4:43 PM

          I agree. If she were such close friends with all of them, why didn’t she ask any more questions? That doesn’t sound normal at all to take one person’s explanation at face value and then shut up about it. Surely, she must have read some of the Wash Post articles or watched the news, or had people asking her about the murder. She was still talking with them months after Robert was murdered. Is it credible that she didn’t even ask any more questions of any of the 3?

      • NM
        06/03/2010 at 4:32 PM

        Sorry, CO, but I think you’ve got it wrong. A person can be smart and loyal and still have a weak personality. Being intelligent, quiet, and nice doesn’t mean you can’t be cowed by your own insecurities and conditioning into blindly following the lead of a strong personality.

        After hearing her testify, all I could think was that you’d have to be a complete moron to not ask *any* follow up questions – if not then, then later in the day, or the week, or the month. This happened IN HER HOME. She MIGHT HAVE BEEN KILLED. And she tells us she was told – must have been a burglar, no idea what happened – and said, “oh, okay.”

        Well, Sarah obviously is not a moron, so that leaves two other possibilities. Either she is so suggestible, so obedient, so in thrall to a stronger personality that she takes his word as the alpha and omega of truth. Or she did ask more questions, but she hasn’t told anyone because she doesn’t want to be asked about it on the witness stand.

        We’ve all heard of – and some of us know of – mothers that could be described as smart, loyal, and law-abiding, yet who ‘looked the other way’ for years while their husband abused a child? A mother who remained loyal to her husband while evidence piled up around him? A mother who claimed she never suspected a thing?

        As for your contention that she heard the story and took her lawyer’s advice to get away from the trouple ASAP – she testified that Victor was a dear, dear friend to her for nearly 2 decades. If she turned on a dime August 3rd and shut him out even though she thought he was innocent, then she is not nearly as loyal and nice as you think she is. If she did so because she was scared of testifying (even though she thought all concerned were innocent), she is also very weak.

        If she turned on a dime August 3rd and shut him out because she suspected one of the trouple or Michael were guilty – for reasons she never shared with the investigators – then she obstructed justice.

        Take your pick. Any way you go, Sarah comes out of this looking very bad.

        • cinnamon
          06/03/2010 at 5:15 PM

          Seems she made more of an effort to find out details about a prior break in at a neighbors house than at her own. Strange.

        • Casual Observer
          06/03/2010 at 8:33 PM

          Or a third option–she knew about all the sketchy things going on in the house (drugs, BDSM, etc) but didn’t want to be in a position where she knew anything further about that night and would be forced to get involved in one way or another. Maybe they “protected” her by not telling her anything, and she didn’t want to know.

          As someone mentioned, both of Sarah’s parents are/were lawyers, and she would be very sensitive to her liability if she had any knowledge of what happened. Suppose she suspected that Michael was responsible, Victor was asleep, and that Joe and Dylan were somehow covering for Michael. So she “accepts” what they said about the intruder, doesn’t ask questions, and hopes that Victor will not get caught up in it. Then by the time everything starts to shake out, she was advised to stay as far away from them as possible.

    • Aquanetta
      06/03/2010 at 1:28 PM

      My 2 cents on Sarah. She obviously feels a great deal of gratitude towards J and V. She’s basically part of the ‘family’, and not just a tenant. I would guess that she paid well below market rent for her space, if any. I think that she wants to believe them. (Haven’t we all be guilty of wanting to believe a really close friend, though deep inside..know they’re not telling the truth.) She is skating that fine line of not really lying on the stand but not really disclosing everything. Thus, remaining loyal but not landing in jail. The fact that she quickly cut ties after the murder tells me that she knows something more than she is telling. She wanted to distant herself from them QUICK. If your a GREAT friend and BELIEVE in your friends, you don’t abandon them. (Maybe that’s just me! LOL_)

      FYI – I have the day off tomorrow due to a mix up in my rotations. I may come to the trial. Any advice as to when to get there would be helpful.

      • Kate
        06/03/2010 at 2:21 PM

        Aquanetta – Your 2 cents on Sarah is very compelling and makes sense in regards to human responses to a horrific situation.

        I believe that you told us in an earlier post that you work in the mental health field? Did I read that correctly?

        At any rate, I greatly enjoy your posts and insights. Besides, your “handle” is delightful – reminds me of that classic hairspray of yore!

        Cheers,
        Kate

        • Kate
          06/03/2010 at 2:23 PM

          As for court times – the editors usually post what time the next day’s proceedings begin. No doubt the info is also available on the court’s website.

        • Aquanetta
          06/03/2010 at 3:53 PM

          Kate

          Thanks for the kind words. My blog name is actually the name of my cat. (I hope she doesn’t sue me for copyright infringement or something. :))

          I am a Mental Health Professional, although I feel just mental most of the time. 🙂

          • Kate
            06/03/2010 at 4:41 PM

            Cheers Aquanetta – I’m feeling a wee bit mental myself of late – by spending way too much time trying to figure out this crime.

            Each day brings new twists and turns.

            • des
              06/03/2010 at 4:50 PM

              “I’m feeling a wee bit mental myself of late – by spending way too much time trying to figure out this crime.”

              tell me about it! i’ve been here (and completely obsessed) since the beginning and i’ve just recently started having dreams that i was discussing the case with a couple of the “regulars”.
              sheesh…

              • Kate
                06/03/2010 at 5:39 PM

                Cheers des – I caught myself talking about this case to a total stranger in the grocery store check-out line the other day.

                I can’t imagine I made a very good first impression, unless it had been Dominic Dunne.

                • des
                  06/04/2010 at 10:56 AM

                  lol!

                  • ladyg
                    06/04/2010 at 11:03 AM

                    i think we all have. first thing in the am, i’m checking to see any/all updates. this has become consuming. i feel as if i’m one of mrs.wone’s prv. investigators, on line trying to help solve this crime

            • Aquanetta
              06/03/2010 at 4:56 PM

              Kate

              You are right… twists and turn. Does this trial sound more and more like OJ? Is this just me? We have attorney scaling fences now !! We already have a Kato (actually two of them – D and S) What’s next? Joe in white Bronco on the Beltway? Wait, it would be Mercedes or BMW, right? 🙂

              • Kate
                06/03/2010 at 5:37 PM

                It certainly has become very high profile – despite the lack of a celebrity.

                I’ll vote for Mercedes, Mercedes , Mercedes for Joe (although he used to have a BMW).

                Kate

      • Fascinating
        06/03/2010 at 3:30 PM

        Aquanetta (great name!!), I agree. I’d sized up Sarah the same after reading about her statements at the trial.

        I think the emotional reactions on the bench were very revealing. And there is MUCH between the lines, IMHO.

        I would hate anyone to cover for a murderer. However, I am also human and see how hard it must be to give testimony at a trial for people you used to LIVE WITH.

        • Aquanetta
          06/03/2010 at 4:01 PM

          Thanks, Fascinating. I’ll fess up like I did with Kate.. my blog name is my cat’s name.

          AND, i 100 percent agree about her emotional response. You are spot on !! This is probable one of few times since the murder (and charges being pressed etc.) that she’s had to face them all together. During this time, she’s realized that they are guilty of SOMETHING. Oh, and she probable scared to of the whole life in a women’s prison thing too. LOL

      • Ohio
        06/03/2010 at 4:16 PM

        The fact that she quickly cut ties could also mean that she knows someone is lying and doesn’t want to have anything to do with them.

        • NM
          06/03/2010 at 4:34 PM

          In which case, she’s obligated to share her suspicions with the investigators, if not legally then morally.

          • James
            06/03/2010 at 4:52 PM

            She was told to cut ties by her lawyer…which is why she was emotional on the subject when testifying.

          • Bill Orange
            06/03/2010 at 4:57 PM

            She very well might have. But her suspicions can’t be used in court.

            • James
              06/03/2010 at 5:08 PM

              If my lawyer — especially in a murder case – told me to do/not to do something, I would follow it to the detail.

        • Bill Orange
          06/03/2010 at 4:59 PM

          Ditto. I don’t believe the tripe about her lawyer told her not to talk to them anymore. While I’m fairly certain that her lawyer DID give her that advice, I don’t think she would have heeded the advice unless she was already fairly sure that something was very, VERY wrong with her (now former) friends.

          • Michael
            06/03/2010 at 5:16 PM

            As I recall, but cannot put my fingers on the sources, one or both of Sarah’s parents are attorneys, so she was raised in a legal savvy environment.

            Michael, co-editor

          • Eagle
            06/03/2010 at 5:48 PM

            I think it can be safely asserted that Sara remains emotionally involved with her former housemates.
            Note her fond giggling and sensitive tearing up at times. That tells me that she is still emotionally in some sort of fairy-tale like thrall.
            Sara does not give any evidence of a critical analysis of her former housemate friends. Denial? Maybe. Unrealistic attachment. Looks like that to me.
            She even let the guys keep the doors unlocked in their alleged
            crime-infested neighborhood. I bet if Joe Price had demanded that the doors always be locked, they would have been locked.
            Just like he demanded the the bedroom doors remained closed and they were always closed. Something very strange in this “family-like” constellation.
            There is still no answer as to why she frequently fled the apartment to home of her two friends.

    • Carolina
      06/03/2010 at 2:42 PM

      I believe her, unfortunately. Someone described her as “a lady.” I understand that far too well, and I doubt that she would ask again. I think that very much like the loyal Lisa G, she prefers to judge them by their treatment of her, until forced to do otherwise.

      • Eagle
        06/03/2010 at 5:53 PM

        What happens to the loyal friends if they find out they have been deliberately fooled? And used?
        Would they still be in denial. In fact, maybe that is why they are in denial. They cannot face that they have been misled all along by apparently harmless people who
        have misused their loyalty.

      • susan
        06/03/2010 at 9:22 PM

        I can’t fathom what that is supposed to mean–that she was described as “a lady.”

        • Clio
          06/04/2010 at 10:11 AM

          Susan, I took that to mean that she is not a slut, unlike at least two members of her former Family. Sarah is a lady, like her (formerly) close ally Victor.

          • christy love
            06/04/2010 at 11:42 AM

            Every “lady” I know LOVES to gossip and would have been asking a million questions. lol.

  12. Also From the Post Story
    06/03/2010 at 12:22 PM

    > …Price’s unprompted remark to Kasul, “We had no chance
    > after the cops got there, that we could get together
    > with our stories.”

    That thought is surely why they’re at such pains to have Robert die instantly just moments before the 911 call. Because the converse is, if Robert was killed earlier they would have had time to coordinate their stories. Price was trying to close this hole in the timeline that very night.

  13. DCGuy
    06/03/2010 at 12:25 PM

    First time posting, but have been keeping up with the trial and the blog. While I think one or more of these guys is at the least guilty of obstruction if not outright murder, I am still puzzled by the clean up. If one of them committed the murder and they were going to concoct the story of an “intruder” why bother clean it up? I know someone speculated about a possible drugging and then hosing down in the backyard and then showering Robert, but that just seems so complicated, especially given the timeline. I guess anythign is possible. I thought they were accused of cleaning up blood from the bedroom though?

    • Lyn
      06/03/2010 at 12:46 PM

      First, I think we are all trying to apply rational thought to an event which was completely irrational. We’re trying to make sense of something that doesn’t.

      Why cleanup if concocting an intruder theory? Maybe the murder took place in a manner or setting that was even more highly unlikely to have occurred with an “intruder.” Some have theorized that Wone was killed in a bathtub after the trouple used water to wake Wone up from a drugging. Does Wone normally take a bath? With his clothes on?

      If the answers are no, then the trouple have to remove him from the bath and clean up any blood evidence that existed in that area.

    • Also From the Post Story
      06/03/2010 at 1:11 PM

      > If… they were going to concoct the story of
      > an “intruder,” why bother clean it up?

      Maybe because the “intruder” story was an emergency Plan B. Maybe they’d intended to remove the body and dump it miles away (after draining it of blood so it wouldn’t mess up the car). They could have taken all night to do this, and everything else, calmly at their leisure. And then, when a missing-persons investigation eventually got under way, they could say that Robert had left for work happily the next morning.

      But suppose Victor stumbled onto the scene and freaked, screamed loud enough that they knew the neighborhood would hear, and they panicked with the fear that neighbors might be calling the police. They’d have to race to fix things up — and their stories — as best they could with the body still there. An additional person (Michael?) might have dashed off with the cleanup materials.

      But they betrayed themselves by taking tellingly long to make their own 911 call after the scream. (Which would account for Victor’s odd concern, in the middle of his hysterical call, about asking the operator what time it was.) They may have felt they HAD to call 911 themselves because if the police showed up without them having done so, they’d look guilty as hell.

      Okay, poke holes in this scenario?

      • Also From the Post Story
        06/03/2010 at 1:31 PM

        An interesting thing about this scenario: it would have allowed for maybe a half an hour of cleanup/fixup to have been done carefully, methodically, and without time pressure, and maybe half an hour to have been done in a mad panic. That might account for some otherwise inexplicable mixtures of evidence/behaviors.

      • CCF
        06/03/2010 at 1:37 PM

        (First time poster)

        That’s a likely scenario.

        I suspect that J and D, and perhaps M as well, started the clean-up before V stumbled onto the scene and screamed, so they have actually over an hour’s time. When you killed someone — not that I have any experience in that — the first reaction would be to dump the body.

        • Leo
          06/03/2010 at 9:30 PM

          No I don’t think so. First reaction would be to clean up scene of your own fingerprints and any other evidence linking the body and weapon to yourself. Then clean yourself. Then concoct a story as to how/when you found your friend dead in bed. I don’t see how anyone could do this in 30 mins but maybe with all 3 working together…

      • Bill 2
        06/03/2010 at 1:43 PM

        I agree that the intruder fairytale was Plan B. It’s easy to figure that they had already cleaned up and were getting ready to dump Robert elsewhere when the plans were changed by an unplanned scream.

        • Goose
          06/03/2010 at 4:24 PM

          I also agree that intruder theory was Plan B. I think it’s also clear that they made up the intruder theory in a panic. Considering Joe’s changing stories, and his original statement that they found Robert bleeding at the back door, that he was stabbed “in the back,” it seems like they wanted to say that he got stabbed outside by an unknown assailant.

          They were probably thinking frantically how they could make that work, and they decided somehow on the intruder theory. From Joe’s slip ups later, it seems that they created a story in a panic.

      • Tarfunk
        06/03/2010 at 1:53 PM

        But it does seem that if they had time to do all that cleaning up after Victor’s scream, which we know was some time between 11:00 and 11:35 pm, wouldn’t they start to realize that maybe the police WEREN’T coming? In that case, it would have been easier to revert to Plan A than to call 911.

        • Timeline
          06/03/2010 at 1:59 PM

          Not if they figured that the police would interview neighbors of the house where he spent his last night as part of an investigation into Robert Wone’s disappearance. I think having a scream heard by your neighbor on the very night when your friend disappeared while staying over at your house would seem really suspicious and make the police start to consider whether you had anything to do with his disappearance, no?

          • Carolina
            06/03/2010 at 2:47 PM

            “All that cleaning” would be considerably less if a playmat, patio or bathtub was involved.

            • Aquanetta
              06/03/2010 at 4:05 PM

              Playmat… that just kills me (no pun intended) everytime that I read that word. 🙂

          • Phil
            06/03/2010 at 3:11 PM

            I have never really bought the theory that the scream precipitated a change from plan A to plan B.

            (not that I have a better theory–just that we are all merely guessing.)

            At any rate, my guess is that something other than the changed-plan scenario happened that night. I think this because 1) once you’ve made sure the police aren’t coming, it seems much, much easier to revert back to plan A, than go forward with plan B. In this regard, it seems much easier to explain a scream in the middle of the night (if it ever comes to having to explain), than it would be to explain A BODY IN YOUR GUESTROOM!

            And, from what little I’ve read of these things, 2) it is very, very hard to convict anyone of murder without a body, which is presumably what they would be focused on that night. Still best to get rid of the body.

            And finally, 3) if you are going to fake an intruder theory–why wouldn’t they do a better job of it? (for example, let the police find some evidence of an intruder??? unlock the back gate? etc.) –they would have time after they realized the police aren’t coming…

            I just don’t get it.

            • Also From the Post Story
              06/03/2010 at 3:57 PM

              > after they realized the
              > police aren’t coming…

              Maybe in their panic and guilt, they were so terrified that the police could arrive ANY MOMENT that it clouded their judgment. In retrospect, if this scenario is the way it happened, their better bet would have been to sit tight and not call. But that’s easy for us to say now.

              • Phil
                06/03/2010 at 5:13 PM

                I agree…I guess I think this is the best answer I’ve heard….but at some point they would have had to DECIDE to call 911 (that is, a proactive step to bring the police there!), rather than just revert back to plan A. Still seems unlikely to me. (Especially given the acting job a 911 call would require).

            • mia
              06/03/2010 at 4:46 PM

              I don’t think a friends’ dead body was found outside your house who was supposed to be at your place combines the scream overheard by your neighbor on the very night would make you looks less suspicious. And it’s very likely Robert took a cab from his RFA office to 1509 Swann St (considering he called from the office at 10:22 and arrived at 10:30), it’s not that difficult to find the cab driver to confirm it.
              And don’t forget, those three men were not veteran criminals. Killing someone under panic is one thing, disposing a dead body is another thing. What if somebody saw them? Where should them dump the body to ensure it wont be discovered later?

        • NYer
          06/03/2010 at 2:03 PM

          If they had reverted to this “plan A,” it indeed would have been easier, but then they’d have to eventually deal with likelihood of police asking about the scream, whether it was through a 911 call or simply to investigate a disappearance. If police learned of the scream and they had asserted that RW left without that morning, they would still have a major problem on their hands.

          • David
            06/03/2010 at 2:10 PM

            And let me just underscore your thinking on that. In Victor’s video that they played in court this morning he mentions that they can hear a baby crying in the house that shares the guest wall, so they were very aware that a loud scream would have been heard by the neighbors.

            David, co-ed.

            • Wassup
              06/03/2010 at 7:46 PM

              The correct term is “party” wall.

          • christy love
            06/03/2010 at 2:28 PM

            You guys must live in the best neighborhoods in the world. I hear people scream from the time to time and not once have I reached for the phone to call police. One scream, no way. I’ll look out the window or look around to see if I see anything, but calling the police over one scream, I find that hard to believe.

            Also, even if the police interviewed a neighbor and she said she heard a scream and Robert was “missing” that’s much less evidence of guilt than they have now. I would take my chances and not know a thing.

            The reason people clean up evidence is because the more evidence, the more likely the police can tell what happened. Look at the case of Dr. Jeffrey MacDonald, they were able to detail his every move in that house through the evidence. They don’t have to guess what happened, they know what happened, the evidence tells on you.

            • NYer
              06/03/2010 at 3:02 PM

              And you must not live next door to elderly folks. I can tell you- they ALWAYS notice things out of the ordinary in the neighborhood (almost to the point of paranoia).

              There is also a big difference between calling the cops when you hear a scream, and reporting to cops knocking on your door that one of your neighbors had screamed on the same night a person who mysteriously disappeared had been staying in their apartment .

              • Timeline
                06/03/2010 at 3:14 PM

                Right. I lived more many years just around the corner from 15th & Swann and screams are definitely out the ordinary. I might not have called the police about one scream, but I certainly would have been able to report it to police the following day on hearing news of a neighbor’s guest disappearing overnight.

                And while a neighbor hearing a scream alone might be less evidence than what’s out there now, I would think it would be enough to turn a harsh spotlight on them as subjects of a missing person investigation, which would have more than likely led to more evidence against them.

                I can see how a scream (from Victor?) would have definitely freaked them out and could have caused them to change course midway through whatever Plan A was.

                • christy love
                  06/03/2010 at 4:13 PM

                  Actually, the other day my cat and dog were fighting at 4am in the morning and I got so mad, I got up and yelled at them, when they didn’t stop I through my shoe at them to break it up, before I could get back in bed, my neighbor called me on the phone and said “I heard the cat and dog fighting and you yelling, you OK?” So I understand about the neighbors hearing everything. After taking it out with you guys though, the best plan was to leave the body there, because as soon as the police find the body and find any blood in the house and match the knives to their knives they are in jail forever! So it’s best to say, someone came in and we don’t know what happened. That explains the knifes the blood, everything.

                • susan
                  06/03/2010 at 9:26 PM

                  I was wondering too if the scream could have been before the stabbing by Wone seeing someone coming towards him or by someone witnessing the stabbing in action, and then came the grunts and groans. Whatever the case, the timeline doesn’t seem to work out for the defendants.

        • Bill 2
          06/03/2010 at 2:07 PM

          People in a panic are not very good at keeping track of time. You can be sure that if they had been calm, the scream put them in a panic mode.

      • KKinCA
        06/03/2010 at 6:55 PM

        Also From the Post Story – sorry for coming into this so late, but I was wondering if your theory includes Michael at the outset (he was already in the house when Robert arrived), or that Michael was summoned by Joe to help them deal with the situation? If the latter, I would be very curious to know what calls, texts, emails were made by the trouple between 10:30 and and the time of Victor’s 911 call. Well, probably only calls – it takes too long to text or email in a crisis.

    • Aquanetta
      06/03/2010 at 1:18 PM

      I completely agree. It does seem like if they were going with the intruder story, they would have left everything a mess and maybe even made MORE of a mess. GREAT POINT.

      • christy love
        06/03/2010 at 2:42 PM

        One could also ask why they didn’t send some valuables with the mat, the knife and the bloody towels. So it would really look like a burglary.

        • Carolina
          06/03/2010 at 2:59 PM

          Honestly? I think they were very rattled and possibly high. They knew they had a limited time to get things cleaned up, then once that was blown, they had to think fast and valuables didn’t enter the picture.

          Another problem is with the police finding those things. If they’d taken the BB, they could get a ping off a tower. If they’d taken his wallet, the location might have provided more evidence. And as for donating their own valuables, I don’t think they could bear to part with them. (Just look at the careful way they placed that bloody knife on their nice table.)

          • tucsonwriter
            06/03/2010 at 9:37 PM

            I think Wade and Price were on drugs. If you read the EMT’s description when he first arrived on scene – Wade avoided contact and Price had his back to him. The three top date rape drugs are odorless and colorless and could have been given to Robert with the glass of water he had in the kitchen. Whoever gave it to him, my guess is Wade, then knew it would be acting in 10-15 mins or so. What “they” subsequently injected him with is anyone’s guess. As far as I can tell there was blood splattered but it was cleaned up. The fact that Robert Wone was showered tells me that the bathroom was involved. The scream may have come from someone at the moment when Robert Wone was stabbed. It is my guess that “they” thought he was dead – faint pulse – so they faked the stabbing death so it wouldn’t look like an overdose. Due to the evidence of the ME he was paralyzed and immobile when stabbed. Maybe whoever witnessed the stabbing screamed. Let’s say this happened at 11:05-11:15. Was Victor involved or not? If not involved wouldn’t the scream have woken him up? What kind of testimony is there about the scream in the inteviews? I don’t recall anything. Its a weird deal. They bumbled through doing the best that they could. I wonder if one of them just started cleaning in an obsessive compulsive way – maybe if I clean this up it will just go away? I wonder if just one or two of them were initially involved and then things went south so one brought in the other. Its possible that Victor was kept in the dark initially. Price could have helped Wade clean up and then gone up to bed at 11:15, simulated awakening, fed the chime story to Victor, they then got up and got downstairs and maybe Victor was the screamer at 11:25 or so. They then do some checking of the house before calling 911…. its so weird because anyone looking at Victor Wone’s body should naturally understand (you would think) that there would be blood there. Unless they didn’t really let Victor see very much…. Joe Price seems to have said a lot of really damning things. More than one that makes him seem overly concerned with the theory of the crime rather than acting like someone who lost a friend from college.

        • Bill 2
          06/03/2010 at 3:48 PM

          Because the mat, the knife, and the bloody towels going away could have been part of Plan A. After those items had left the building, they couldn’t call an accoplice on a cell-phone and say, “Quick, come back and take some loot with you!” After the scream, they would not want an accomplice to be caught returning to the house.

        • Aquanetta
          06/03/2010 at 4:08 PM

          Christy

          Another excellent point !!!

  14. AnnaZed
    06/03/2010 at 12:38 PM

    “We had no chance after the cops got there, that we could get together with our stories.”

    Oh boy, is Joe ever going to rue the day that he got that time-stamp wrong during the 911 call, 11:43 it was not. Plenty of time my friend, plenty of time.

  15. CDinDC (Boycott BP)
    06/03/2010 at 1:48 PM

    “Aside from Robert’s device, Waid said all the other ones were analyzed by the Secret Service and results were returned to him. He was not asked, nor did he volunteer what the results were.”

    I imagine some of these things are more relevant to the murder than to the conspiracy trial.

  16. Tori Reads
    06/03/2010 at 1:59 PM

    Has anyone considered whether Wone could have been infected with insulin? Were any of the defendants, Michael, or Sarah diabetic?

  17. Tori Reads
    06/03/2010 at 1:59 PM

    Sorry, meant “injected”

  18. des
    06/03/2010 at 3:55 PM

    ok cdindc, work your magic and show us how we can find photos from the washpost of 16 august 2006. 🙂

    • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
      06/03/2010 at 4:28 PM

      LOL

      Page prints of WaPo articles are available, but they are costly. $75.

      I checked the library at my firm and they only keep 4 months back. Darn.

      • des
        06/03/2010 at 4:43 PM

        yeah, that’s too bad. but i knew you would know how to find it!

        • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
          06/03/2010 at 4:44 PM

          LOL Thanks des!

    • Linds
      06/03/2010 at 5:58 PM
      • Linds
        06/03/2010 at 6:09 PM

        And here are all the photos published that day; I’m scanning through now, but others may have a better idea what to look for.

        http://gallery.pictopia.com/wpost/search/?q=publication_date%3A2006-08-16

        • Linds
          06/03/2010 at 6:13 PM

          Actually, I guess WaPo can only sell the photos they took — maybe the ones in question were provided by the MPD?

  19. AnnaZed
    06/03/2010 at 4:08 PM

    “…Connolly asked if it was SOP to take pictures of any witness or suspect injuries. It is. He then asked about one of the WaPo photos and if he saw any injuries on Zaborsky’s hands. Martin objected, sustained.”

    This I simply do not understand.

    • Nelly
      06/03/2010 at 4:51 PM

      It’s an irrelevant question. Don’t know why Connolly wanted to ask it, except to show that Victor could not have killed Robert because he (Victor) had no wounds on his hands, and supposedly a victim would have fought back. Except Robert was probably paralyzed.

      • AnnaZed
        06/03/2010 at 5:43 PM

        Maybe to demonstrate that he didn’t have dishpan hands from cleaning up.

        • Nelly
          06/03/2010 at 7:16 PM

          LOL! That’s right. They only had a jug of caustic, industrial strength cleaner in the home, so surely if Victor had helped with the clean-up, he would have had chemical burns on his hands and arms, visible in the Wash Post photo. *snicker*

    • Timeline
      06/03/2010 at 4:52 PM

      I am extremely curious about this as well. What would Zaborsky having an injury prove for the defense? Wondering what kind of injury we’re talking about? Scratches? Sprained wrist? What? Very curious.

  20. Ivan
    06/03/2010 at 4:13 PM

    I’m not sure how having 2 bicycles stolen in 2008 (two years after Robert Wone was murdered BTW) substantiate terrible streetcrime. Also, what hour of the day did Mr. Conolly “scale” the wall? Sorry but I think the defense is becoming desperate.

    • New Alias
      06/03/2010 at 4:44 PM

      I cannot believe I missed the tape of Connelly climbing the fence.

      Mr. Connelly strikes me as a rather ungainly fellow. The mental image I’ve formed of his feat of athleticism is quite comedic.

      Does seem like a desperate move – the judge already learned yesterday that an intruder who would have used the overturned garbage can and then shed to climb up over the fence would have dropped down into the yard of 1511 Swann, not the enclosed patio area of 1509.

      • NYer
        06/03/2010 at 4:58 PM

        Agreed, NA, on the issue of Connelly’s athleticism. Didn’t the Eds. report that he almost passed out in court the other week?

        • susan
          06/03/2010 at 9:41 PM

          I agree the stolen bicycle story is a desperate one on the part of the defense. Good question re what time of day it was. Also, the bicycles weren’t in the house on the second floor when everyone was at home. And presumably no one was murdered when the bikes were stolen either.

          Back to today’s court day. It was reported that in J. Price’s taped statement to police he said that Zaborsky and Ward were so harmless they “couldn’t spank a child that was being bad.” But Mr. Wone wasn’t a child and we know that Ward could and has done a lot more than spank an adult, whether the adult was “bad” or not.

          • Ivan
            06/04/2010 at 9:55 AM

            Good point regarding Mr. Ward. I’m sure he knows how to invoke pain when he wants to.

  21. CDinDC (Boycott BP)
    06/03/2010 at 4:31 PM

    Who cares if they CAN scale the lattice, fence, wall, etc. That’s not the point of the argument.

    Can they scale it without leaving hand, foot, a$$ prints??

    I’m certain they CAN’T.

    • Timeline
      06/03/2010 at 4:55 PM

      Exactly. I have never really cared that much about whether an intruder could scale the fence or not. Obviously they could. I think all the evidence about how Wone didn’t move when stabbed, etc., is much more compelling, and when added to the information about about the difficulty of scaling the fence without leaving any evidence of such, it becomes even more so.

    • Timeline
      06/03/2010 at 4:55 PM

      Did they get Michael to fake the bike thefts also?

      • Ivan
        06/03/2010 at 5:04 PM

        Ha Ha. Good one. I was thinking the same thing.

  22. WIGuy
    06/03/2010 at 4:36 PM

    How could neighbors have heard Robert scream if he was incapacitated into a state of motionless while being stabbed? They must have heard someone else or the wound evidence is incorrect.

    • Ivan
      06/03/2010 at 4:43 PM

      I believe it was Victor’s scream they heard not Robert’s.

    • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
      06/03/2010 at 4:50 PM

      I’ve always thought it was Robert that screamed. Incapacitation isn’t necessarily unconscience. He could have been incapacitated to a point of unable to defend himself. Easily subdued. But still somewhat verbal. For instance, if someone drinks a 6-pack of beer, they may still be able to move and speak, but you could knock them over with a feather.

  23. Aquanetta
    06/03/2010 at 4:48 PM

    Tell me that I read this wrong…please. VIDEO was introduced (Tom Conley and others) leaping the fence. I watch Bear Grylls in Man vs Wild enough to know that any obstacle can be conquored with the right skills. 🙂 BUT… to climb the fense, break in, kill someone, leave, re-scale the fense……. AND leave no prints or ANY evidence that it was climbed… Even my Bear couldn’t pull that one off AND he was in the British special forces! I call Bu_l Sh_t on this one !!! IM sure they conveniently forgot to film any close ups of visible prints in the pollen or any finger prints left behind.

    PLEASE tell me that this PLANNED SIMULATION will be brought out for the misleading hoax that it is…

    • christy love
      06/03/2010 at 4:52 PM

      Obviously, it was a black person, we all know how high they can jump. Where was Kobe Bryant that night?

      • aquanetta
        06/04/2010 at 11:46 AM

        DAMMIT Christy… why didn’t I think of that. 🙂 Especially after J basically said a black dude did it.

  24. John
    06/03/2010 at 5:00 PM

    Could we get some more details on the electrical stimulation sex toy? I asked a friend recently how it works. He said that the electrical charge if done right can cause quite a release of fluid. And the evidence showed that there was a lot of fluid in Robert’s anal region. Would an abnormal amount of electrical charge have caused cardiac arrest? Then the cover up follows? Any thoughts?

    • NYer
      06/03/2010 at 5:15 PM

      Was the electric toy ruled as admissible? I cannot recall- I know earlier posts said a lot of the BDSM evidence was not permitted.

    • William
      06/03/2010 at 5:26 PM

      Was the evidence of semen introduced at the trial? I read about it on this site, but I don’t know if the ME testified about semen anywhere. If it wasn’t introduced, can anyone figure out why not? That was pretty compelling evidence.

      • Bill 2
        06/03/2010 at 5:47 PM

        Compelling evidence of what? This isn’t a murder or rape trial? How would that be compelling evidence of a conspiracy?

        • AnnaZed
          06/03/2010 at 5:51 PM

          Er, umm, well there better be or the charges should never have been brought and they could never be convicted of conspiracy. Conspiracy to mislead the authorities in a murder inquiry is a crime; to be convicted of it compelling evidence needs to be demonstrated that you did conspire. What part of this is unclear?

          • Bill 2
            06/03/2010 at 6:03 PM

            Er, umm, are they now being charged with sexual assault? Er, umm, did they conspire to get semen into his rectum? Er, umm, I don’t think that’s part of this trial.

            • AnnaZed
              06/03/2010 at 6:13 PM

              Yike, Bill2, I completely lost context (getting posts via email out of sequence) and posted a totally irrelevant and totally rude comment at you there, so sorry!

            • Wassup
              06/03/2010 at 8:04 PM

              It seems the whole tragedy was a result of their conspiring to get semen into his rectum and most likely into their own as well.
              Jeez, they are gay men, thats what gay men do.

              • Craig
                06/03/2010 at 8:23 PM

                Wassup / JackStar: Welcome back Manopener. Care to settle on just one screenname? Bandwidth may be plentiful, but my patience with game players is not.

              • DonnaH
                06/03/2010 at 8:44 PM

                Gay men do not plan on rendering others unconscious and then raping them any more than heterosexual men do.

        • Tarfunk
          06/03/2010 at 5:58 PM

          It might be compelling evidence of a sexual assault, but the government dropped the sexual assault charge. So I’m guessing that information will not be offered at trial.

          • William
            06/03/2010 at 6:09 PM

            If an intruder did this, how did he get the electrostimulation device over the fence with him and how did he have time to commit rape as well as murder under the defendants’ timeline of events? If there is evidence that the victim was sexually assaulted and his own semen was in his rectum, I think that’s compelling evidence for the prosecution that the defendants must be lying.

            • AkaZappa
              06/03/2010 at 6:17 PM

              We don’t yet know whether it was semen or seminal fluid in the rectum. If it was seminal fluid, the defense will argue voiding. Also the defense may be contending the rectal sample was cross-contaminated.

              More will be revealed.

              • Tarfunk
                06/03/2010 at 6:30 PM

                But wasn’t semen/seminal fluid also found around his genitals? Hard to see how voiding could have anything to do with that.

                • AkaZappa
                  06/03/2010 at 6:36 PM

                  If it was just seminal fluid, then yes, voiding could well have accounted for it. Seminal fluid is found in the fluids secreted by dead men in a pretty high percentage of cases (I can’t remember the number, 65 or 70, I thought), and that would include fluids that are ejected out of the penis, I believe. In fact, I think it’s more likely that the voiding accounts for seminal fluid around the genitals than in the rectum, in my very limited understanding. If it is really semen, and not just seminal fluid, that is another matter. But the fact that the govt dropped the sexual assault charges suggests to me that the evidence from the fluids was not compelling enough for it to be pursued.

            • KKinCA
              06/03/2010 at 7:00 PM

              The electrostim device was found in Dylan’s room, along with many other BDSM “toys”.

    • DonnaH
      06/03/2010 at 6:54 PM

      When I was first reading about this, I researched e-stim devices and came across a site called sextek.com, which clarified the technical issues…and yes, if improperly used, such as around the heart regions, such devices can be a possible cause of cardiac arrest, as the site warns. As noted elsewhere on this site (as I recall), it can also produce orgasm even on someone who is unconscious (as Robert might have been from the injection of ketamines or whatever). But the autopsy did state that the cause of death was the knife wound in the chest.

  25. John
    06/03/2010 at 5:25 PM

    thanks NYer- just curious about anyone who thinks this might have been the initial problem with Robert’s death? I guess I just don’t want to believe that anyone is that evil.

  26. YournormalJoe
    06/03/2010 at 5:42 PM

    After the trial is over how long do have to wait for a verdict from the judge.

  27. wonewatcher
    06/03/2010 at 5:46 PM

    After Waid’s testimony concluded today, the prosecution suggested that it has about eight witnesses left to testify before it rests.

    The judge then talked to the lawyers about the assumed defense motions for acquittal and the government’s response to those. She seemed fairly confident that the defense team would know how to frame their motions.

    But with the U.S. attorneys, she went on for a couple of minutes with her instructions, telling them not just to reiterate the facts presented at trial but to suggest to her what inferences she should draw from the testimony. She also wants the government to explain to her how the D.C. obstruction of justice statute applies specifically in this case.

    Furthermore, she said she wants the government to demonstrate to her the relevant inferences for each defendant, not just the three together.

    It came across to me as her telling them “you better show me your best stuff if you expect me to continue the trial,” but I know I’m just one observer.

    • BenFranklin
      06/03/2010 at 6:53 PM

      Thank you for your keen, unbiased observations.

      Sounds like the judge may be inclined to acquit or dismiss after the prosecution rests. This is the second day in a row that that ended with acquittal or dismissal foremost on her mind.

      The MPD & prosecutor’s malicious, incompetent, misconduct is truly disgraceful. It has inflicted unforgivable anguish & damage to the Wone family & the defendants.

      • AkaZappa
        06/03/2010 at 6:55 PM

        I ordered two eggs over easy for breakfast, but they arrived over medium, and there were three of them.

        • Bill Orange
          06/03/2010 at 8:50 PM

          I like my eggs scrambled.

          • Kate
            06/03/2010 at 9:19 PM

            With potato salad on the side?

            • Clio
              06/04/2010 at 10:05 AM

              “Let me be clear. I am not gay. I never have been gay … I did nothing wrong at the Minneapolis airport.”

      • DonnaH
        06/03/2010 at 7:06 PM

        I do not read from her actions that she is leaning towards acquittal. To the contrary, I think she wants to have as solid a prosecution case as possible so that if she renders a judgment of guilty, the case will be likely to hold up under appeal.

        As for the rest of your accusations about the prosecution and its damage to the Wone family, we await your presentation of supporting facts.

      • Matt
        06/03/2010 at 8:46 PM

        Ben Franklin —

        Once again you have proved you are a biased and uninformed moron who is clearly friends with the defendants. They are going to jail in a few weeks and I understand your frustration with that. I have had discussions with friends at the US Attorney’s office and they are fine with exactly how this progressing and comfortable in how this will play out.

        In the end your buddies will see how (un)comfortable the inside of DC jail is for quite some time. My guess would be after conviction, old Victor (who I believe is actually relatively innocent in all of this) will roll on the two freakshows thus lightening his sentence and lengthening theirs substantially.

        Instructions regarding Motions to Dismiss / Acquit and oppositions thereto are not uncommon and indicate no “inclination” of the judge to acquit or dismiss the defendants.

        Get your head out of your ass Benjamin or at the very least explain to all of us what exact pain you believe the Government has inflicted on the Defendants? Moreover, please enlighten us in why exactly you believe the “intruder” theory.

        • wonewatcher
          06/03/2010 at 9:02 PM

          Matt —

          Without taking sides between you and Ben Franklin, I do wonder about the specificity of the judge’s advice/instructions to the prosecution about its rejoinder to a motion to acquit. She did take some pains in explaining what she waned. Is that also common?

          • wonewatcher
            06/03/2010 at 9:03 PM

            what she wanTed, i mean.

            • Matt
              06/04/2010 at 12:33 AM

              Wonewatcher —

              Common enough. If my understanding of what she asked for is correct (I was not there) and I have full faith in the editors of this site for their reporting than what the Judge requested was not out of the ordinary for a bench trial such as this…although ben and tasso might wish otherwise.

        • BenFranklin
          06/04/2010 at 5:36 PM

          Matt-
          I believe you when you say your source in the US attorney’s office is comfortable with the way this will play out.

          It’s pretty obvious they know the defendants were framed by the MPD’s malicious incompetence, especially after the FBI lab test results. It’s almost over & I keep asking myself was that REALLY a prosecution witness?

          They know justice will be served by losing this one.

          • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
            06/04/2010 at 5:50 PM

            I found a penny today.

        • NYer
          06/04/2010 at 7:38 PM

          Matt wrote: “Victor (who I believe is actually relatively innocent in all of this) will roll on the two freakshows thus lightening his sentence and lengthening theirs substantially.”
          If that’s how it plays out- all after VZ pled innocent which resulted in this trial, drawing out the agony of the Wone family and incurring thousands of $$ of the taxpayers, I hope the judge would show SCANT leniency on VZ’s sentence. (Say, 25 years instead of the 30 for obstruction.) At this point I view VZ practically as guilty as the others for his role in this, and I hope there’s serious retribution, even if at this point he were to come clean.

    • gertiestn
      06/03/2010 at 7:05 PM

      I’m curious. Did the defense hint how long those eight or so witnesses might be likely to be testifying? Do you have an idea whether we’re talking about days of testimony, or hours?

      • wonewatcher
        06/03/2010 at 8:18 PM

        It sounded like a few more days.

        • wonewatcher
          06/03/2010 at 8:19 PM

          … and it was the prosecution, not the defense.

  28. Danali
    06/03/2010 at 7:14 PM

    Did Connolly’s cinematic depiction include proof he could scale the fence without leaving any footprints or other telltale signs of his presence?

    If he’s going to recreate the alleged intruder’s entry, he better do it without disrupting pollen and dust and leaving other signs behind- which surely he did not do.

    If the video is hi-res enough maybe the prosecution could some of that out..

    What a joke.

  29. Leo
    06/03/2010 at 9:55 PM

    The fact that the Judge has asked for the defense motions for acquittal and the prosecution’s jury instructions (essentially) is routine and not an indication of how she’s leaning or going to rule. All cases progress along these lines, and she is just trying to insure the trial stays on track and no time is wasted next week when it will not be in session. I agree the prosecution seems to need more hand-holding than the defense, but given the disparity in resources this is often the case. The government is always having to wing it compared to the highly paid private attorneys they often face, who are backed by a whole law firm staffed with paralegals, associates, expensive technology, etc. This Judge seems scrupulously fair and determined to have both sides present their best case to her so she has a fully developed record on which to base her decision.

    • dcbill
      06/04/2010 at 5:55 PM

      I was in court yesterday–all this week in fact–and the judge definitely communicated that she wanted both sides to spend next week getting their ducks in a row. She made it crystal clear to the government exactly what she wanted to see from them. I had no sense that she’s already decided the case. She strikes me as very fair and impartial and very smart. For the lawyers on here, when you say, in order to acquit, she has to find what a reasonable jury would consider reasonable doubt, is this really just her understanding of reasonable doubt? In other words, will there be some extra layer of legal analysis she will have to execute in light of the fact that there’s no jury? Or can she just find what she finds and render a verdict? Does that make sense? Thanks.

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