Day 19: Updates

5:00pm Update: Adjournment
 
Defendant Dylan Ward’s mother, Diane, took the stand this afternoon and said the missing knife from her son’s cutlery set never was in DC and was in Tacoma all the time.  Nervous and weeping on the stand, she actually produced two knives.  One of them fit into the case.  She says she produced them to attorneys after Ward’s arrest.
 
Also testifying: The baby-sitter who was on duty at 1511 Swann Street, Ms. King, said the top cover of a turtle sandbox that was in the backyard was crushed upon seeing it on August 3.  MPD photographs of it were produced.  On cross, King stated she did not know what transpired on the night of August 2 but had seen earlier news reports.
 
A full wrap of the day hits around 7:30pmET.
 
11:00AM and 1:30 PM Updates:
 
Dr. Henry Lee takes the stand qualified as an expert in blood pattern analysis and crime scene reconstruction, under direct questioning by Price counsel Bernie Grimm.   He testified on the towel, the t-shirt, the bed, as well as the results of prosecution expert Douglas Deedrick’s fiber pattern transfer (to the knife) test.
 
More on Lee’s testimony follows.
 
 
 8:30am Update

The Plan: Trial resumes at 9:45 this morning in 310 Moultrie.

David Schertler on Friday said the defense may call six more witnesses before they rest, but that number isn’t hard and fast: there’s still that witness trying to return from China/Mongolia.

Up to three witnesses may be called today.

A Defensive Shift? We may have heard a shift in the defense last week…and then again, maybe not.  Previously, defense counsel asserted that tamponade would have immediately incapacitated Robert – and thus no defensive wounds.

But last week Schertler and Connolly had adopted Dr. Fowler’s :45-1 minute incapacitation theory…sort of.  On Friday Schertler repeatedly used the :45 second time-window when trying to dial back the clock to somewhere near 11:49.  However he muddled it, several times, as :45 seconds that perhaps Robert lived.  Despite the muddle, it seemed clear that Judge Leibovitz remembered Fowler’s assertion.

Blonde on Blonde: Ever since the trial kicked off on May 17, a lot of faces have become familiar to us: reps from media, associates, paralegals, MPD and the DoJ officials who fill the nearly fifty seats in room 310.  It’s almost always crowded and while filing in or out through the courtroom’s narrow doors, spectators can find themselves shoulder to shoulder with a defendant, a prosecutor, a wmrw.com stringer and one woman in particular, a mystery woman.

Mysterious only because she won’t identify herself.  Obviously a member of the defense team, we first thought she was attached to Grimm, then Schertler, now we’re just confused mystified.

Sean’s Dissent: Intern Sean had a different take on Friday’s proceedings:

“I think the defense overall had a pretty good day.  After the break, they got what they wanted – they managed to lay a foundation for the tamponade stuff after all, even after Judge Leibovitz told them before the break that they hadn’t yet.  And they got the PEA testimony that might undermine the prosecution’s evidence regarding the time line of the 9-1-1 call.

“Dr. Smith also had a pretty good explanation for the 12:17 (record of PEA with Robert at GW) – he made very clear that the :12 minute reference was only for untreated PEA.  Once medical intervention began, PEA could last 20 or 30 minutes.  I think Martin’s biggest hit was with the studies, and Judge Leibovitz’ questioning – particularly that those studies supporting his (Smith’s) opinion were all essentially extrapolations from animals.”

Lee examined the towel at his New Haven laboratory. In addition to the three identified stains (identified as 1B, 2, and 3), Lee applied tetramethylbenzidine as a presumptive test to find more blood.

The Towel. Exhibit E

As to the identified stains, Lee said stain 1B had a large semicircular area that came from a direct contact applying pressure to a bloody surface. 
1B also contained stains that Lee described as “fingermarks” which showed movement upon contact with a bloody surface. 
Lee concluded that 1B was consistent with a right hand applying pressure on a surface such as the wound.

Stains 2 and 3 were smaller, and Lee testified they came from secondary transfer (not from directly contacting blood, but from another

Lee’s examination of the knife resulted in his conclusion that the blood could not have come from a towel.  Deedrick’s exemplar knife showed grease spots and evidence of cleaning. 

On the crime scene knife, Lee also found “multiple deposits”; 3 distinctive patterns.  “Multiple deposits,” he said, indicated “multiple stabbings.”

Finally, the blood on the t-shirt and the bed. While recognizing that the t-shirt was saturated while the sheet only showed two spots of blood, Lee indicated that it was much of the blood on the shirt came after Robert had been moved and while the EMTs were attempting to resuscitate him.

AUSA Glenn Kirschner began his questioning by asking Dr. Lee about the differences between a staged scene and a non-staged scene. Lee insisted that, if anything, a staged scene would often be easier to examine.

Kirschner then moved on to the towel.  Was it Lee’s testimony on direct that this was a normal amount of blood?  Lee answered, as he said in direct (although he did not actually say it in direct) that it was less than expected for a struggle, but not unusual when there was no struggle.  “A quick stabbing may have very little blood.”  Was it usual to see a struggle in stabbings?  Lee said he could not say.

 Kirschner asked how many stabbings Lee had worked.  “Over 100, maybe 1000.”  Would Lee expect to see more blood on the towel if it had been used to apply pressure on a wound?  Lee took exception to the premise that there was not much blood found.  “That’s not little, that’s 5 to 10 ccs.”  That, and because of the “limited surface area” that was exposed to the blood, and because Robert was laying face up, equal a perfectly expected amount of blood that was found on the towel.

 Moving on to Lee’s objections to Deedrick’s conclusions, Kirschner noted the possibility that someone could have placed the knife blade side up, with the spine of the knife on the towel.  Then he pointed out the relative lack of blood on the knife’s cutting edge.  Lee hedged, indicating there was blood there.  At this, Judge Leibovitz interjected, saying that to her layman’s eyes, there was much less blood on the edge.

 Lee said that the reflections and camera angles could make this deceptive.  “So you’re saying . . . this is an illusion?” Leibovitz asked.  Lee conceded that no, it was not, and that although there was blood on the edge, there was less.  So, after all this, was it possible for the knife to have been wiped across the towel, blade-up?  Lee never answered it definitively, and the cross continued onto details regarding the differences between the patterns on Deedrick’s example knife and the crime scene knife.

 Ward counsel David Schertler started his re-direct of Lee with the subject of struggle.  Would he expect no movement, and would he expect no defensive wounds from a sleeping victim?  Yes, to both questions.  Then Schertler moved on to the shirt and the sheets.  The shirt, although saturated, showed a flow pattern consistent with the spots on the bed.  The rest of the blood, he reiterated, likely came when Robert was moved.  Finally, Lee pointed out the presence of hair and fatty tissue on the crime scene knife, things that would not be added if the blood had been dabbed on later from a towel.

Grimm’s redirect was similar, again emphasizing the differences between the exemplar knife and the crime scene knife, as well as the lack of evidence of staging.

Following Lee was Dr. Vincent DiMaio, who was qualified as an expert in forensic pathology.  Questioned by Zaborsky counsel Thomas Connolly, DiMaio’s testimony was simple, repeatedly emphasizing that nearly all the findings of the prosecution’s forensic experts were meaningless.  Lack of fishtailing?  “You don’t see them in most, a majority” of stab wounds.  “Even,” he added, “when the victims are fighting with knives.”  Lack of defensive wounds? Again, “a majority of people who are stabbed to death have no defensive wounds.”

 In the medical literature, he claims, that number is 60%. Then he said that it was almost impossible to determine the length of a blade that makes a specific stab wound, and that the blood in the abdomen could easily have come from resuscitation efforts.

The prosecution will cross examine Dr. DiMaio after lunch.

315 comments for “Day 19: Updates

  1. Bill Orange
    06/21/2010 at 9:12 AM

    RE: Mystery woman. Describe her, please.

    • Pete McLeanVa
      06/21/2010 at 5:00 PM

      Don’t get all ruffled. She’s writing a sequel of Legally Blond.
      Oh My Gosh! Am I wrong? Is she Reese? Is she wearing Fendi sunglasses?

      • Bob
        06/21/2010 at 8:05 PM

        How tall is she? The real Reese is 5’3″.

  2. chilaw79
    06/21/2010 at 9:18 AM

    The medical evidence on PEA is leaving me confused. Did the EMT provide any treatment to Mr. Wone in the ambulance and, if so, what treatment? The trauma center made serious efforts to resuscitate Mr. Wone, but those efforts failed and the nature of the wounds suggests that any such efforts would never have been successful. I was not under the impression the trauma center made any effort to repair the wounds he suffered.

    How does Dr. Smith reconcile the lack of defensive wounds and the surgical precision of the sounds with the notion that Mr. Wone somehow was still alive in any way?

    • Bill Orange
      06/21/2010 at 9:32 AM

      “The medical evidence on PEA is leaving me confused. Did the EMT provide any treatment to Mr. Wone in the ambulance and, if so, what treatment?”

      I’ll leave the definitive answer to the eds, but my recollection is that the EMTs at a minimum put an IV in the left forearm, so they probably gave him both meds and fluid through the line. I also think (I’m less certain on this point, though.) that the EMTs were the ones who did the intubation (breathing tube placement). Most non-medical types don’t know this, but you can actually squirt meds through the breathing tube, which would’ve been another route for medication administration.

      • anon
        06/21/2010 at 12:22 PM

        The affidavit states that the EMTs thought Robert looked like he had been dead awhile, no pulse, and an EKG was completely flatlined. Doesn’t that mean that there could not have been PEA and thus negating completely the defenses timelin?

        • Carolina
          06/21/2010 at 3:12 PM

          They did not say flatline, but PEA.

  3. Kate
    06/21/2010 at 9:23 AM

    Just popped up in the comments bar: “Watch Glee Online Free”

    Incredible silliness.

  4. tassojunior
    06/21/2010 at 10:18 AM

    Over the weekend I noticed this on Wikipedia attributed to a Lou Chibarro story in the Blade which is no longer available online:

    “”In 2007, D.C. police revealed that they had been preparing to make an arrest in the Wone murder case in 2006, but that the burglary had derailed those plans.[17] Police have not revealed the name of the arrest target, nor the charge(s) that would have been filed.[17]””

    I assume it means they were prepared pretty quickly to go with an arrest of Ward for murder but that Michael Price (I would have thought Collins) became an additional suspect. The arrest warrant served on Ward reads more like a murder warrant.

  5. BadShoes
    06/21/2010 at 10:50 AM

    Our editors write:

    “But last week Schertler and Connolly had adopted Dr. Fowler’s :45-1 minute incapacitation theory…sort of.”

    –The defense can use “instant death” to explain the precision of the wounds and the absence of bleeding.
    –The defense can use “45-second incapacitation” to explain why Mr. Wone screamed/groaned/moaned after he was stabbed.
    –The defense could use “lived for a few minutes” to explain why EMT Baker detected PEA at 11:59pm, within the 12-minute max window for untreated PEA.

    But they cannot logically argue for all three. Since (IMHO) the precision of the wounds and the absence of bleeding is a bigger problem than the exact time of death, they are pretty much stuck with instant death.

    Possibly the defense is going to argue for a quantum theory of murder, in which Mr. Wone, like Schrodinger’s cat, was both alive and dead until actually observed by Mr. Baker.

    • Kate
      06/21/2010 at 11:21 AM

      Excellent points, BadShoes – I especially like your Scrodinger’s cat-in-the-box analogy. I wonder if Michael’s cat-torturing buddy, Phelps, ever thought of that one?

      Sorry for the rather sick joke (I’m a cat lover, by the way) and on a more serious note:

      Do you, or anyone else, recall a point in EMT Baker’s testimony that the PEA recorded in the ambulance may have been caused by the vibrations on the road? I’ve looked back through the coverage and think I’ve missed something. Perhaps my ol’ brain is both dead and alive until I can see it working properly …

      Thanks,
      Kate

      • BadShoes
        06/21/2010 at 11:41 AM

        Bill Orange has argued on several occasions that it may not have been possible to distinguish between PEA and asystole in the back of an ambulance.

        However, AFAIK, Mr. Baker’s testimony matched his notes–PEA.

        (Keep in mind that I wasn’t present, and don’t have access to a transcript, so my understanding of witnesses’ exact testimony is based on summary reporting by our editors and others. Even when I have access to perfect information, I still sometimes remember it wrong.)

        • Kate
          06/21/2010 at 12:20 PM

          Thanks Bad Shoes – “I still sometimes remember it wrong.”

          It’s great to know I’m not the only one with the occasional memory mishap. There’s so many intricate and confounding details to this case, I find it increasingly difficult to keep my ducks in a row.

    • Bob
      06/21/2010 at 8:31 PM

      I have been familiar with the thought experiment of Schrodinger’s cat for decades, and am not a lawyer or a physician because I am a chemist turned computer scientist, and quantum mechanics is basic to modern chemistry. I have always thought that, in computer science slang, the thought experiment of Schrodinger’s cat is a “crock”, a worthless intellectual exercise. This is not a family newspaper, but I will not say what it is meant to be a crock of; we all know that, and the computer slang is “crock” with no qualifier. I personally think that the Copenhagen interpretation is also a crock, but one can recognize Schrodinger’s cat as a crock without thinking that the Copenhagen interpretation is a crock.

      The thought experiment of Schrodinger’s cat insults cats and is otherwise dishonest. It is said that someone has put a cat in a box, and that there is a quantum random device, perhaps based on the decay of radium, that either will or will not cause a vial of hydrogen cyanide to be broken open, killing the cat. The premise of the experiment is that the cat is not dead and not alive, but possibly either, until the box is opened.

      The problem is that the Copenhagen interpretation is observer-centric, but there is already an observer before the box is opened. The cat is in the box. If she is still alive, she knows that she is alive (and is probably trying to get out of the box). If she is dead, then she briefly knew, as the cyanide was released, that something was wrong. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist or quantum physicist to check the life status of a cat. A live cat can do that.

      Any comparison of the death of Robert Wone to this experiment is insulting, not only to cats, but also to Robert Wone. If the defense indeed intends to use such a varied argument, that insults the victim.

      If Robert Wone was alive and conscious when he was stabbed, the truth was known at the time, because he knew it, and any human is an observer. If he was rendered unconscious, he knew briefly, until he lost consciousness, that he was being rendered unconscious, or at least that something was wrong.

      Also, at any point, if he was dead, then, according to some religions including Christianity, he knew that he was dead. If I am right, the final judgment does not get anyone off the hook for Dante’s Inferno.

      However, Schrodinger’s Cat is a crock. The cat knows, and Mr. Wone might have known. Don’t try that defense, either before Judge Liebovitz (and don’t insult her by trying to appeal to a wiser Judge, who will leave it to judges.)

      • BadShoes
        06/21/2010 at 9:03 PM

        I intended no disrespect to the memory of Robert Wone, nor to cats. If my remarks are seen as insulting to either man or feline, I humbly apologize, and promise that never again will I mention Schrodinger, quantum mechanics, or cats on WMRV.

        In fairness to the defense, by apparently deciding not to call their two “instant death” experts, Drs. Nazam and Wechsler, they have elected to not make any qua–uh, dual theory arguments either. The defense, I guess, now argues that Mr. Wone lived on for a a few minutes–just long enough to be in PEA at 11:59pm.

        So, now the defense has the problem of explaining why the stab wounds were so perfect, and for that purpose, they have Dr. Lee, who tells us that a) perfect wounds aren’t special, Mr. Wone was just asleep; and/or b) a martial arts specialist put Mr. Wone in a paralyzing grip. Dr. Di Maio tells us that he once put a screwdriver through his palm, and didn’t feel a thing, so maybe Mr. Wone didn’t feel anything either.

        The defense’ new line actually fits the defendant’s narrative better than instant death, but Drs. Lee and Di Maio don’t appear to have been particularly persuasive un explaining the neat wounds.

        I’m not sure that this has been a good swap for the defense, particularly as they laid the groundwork for “instant death” in their cross-examination. I don’t remember if instant death figured in the defense’s opening arguments or not–I think it may have.

  6. Hoya Loya
    06/21/2010 at 11:58 AM

    I have to disagree with Sean. I don’t think the judge was buying the 12 minute business at all — it was too transparent an effort to use medical analysis to establish an alternate timeline.

    And I think at this point tamponade is pretty much accepted in this case, as is internal bleeding, but that Fowler’s testimony pretty much said “So what?” to both of these as they still don’t explain the surgical nature of the wounds, the lack of defensive wounds and the lack of blood on Robert’s arms and hands. And even if one accepts that Robert was instantly killed it had to be with one incredibly lucky first incapacitating stab — unlikely by a random, surprised intruder.

    The Examiner reports that Dr. Lee is testifying. Not sure what he will add now that there is general agreement on internal bleeding. Probably analysis of the blood on the towel, sheets and the knife?

  7. gertiestn
    06/21/2010 at 12:16 PM

    That link also has a link to the … um … interesting web page of the good doctor. Worth clicking around, I think.

  8. commonsensewillprevailihope
    06/21/2010 at 12:22 PM

    Great strategy: associate yourself with experts most known from a case that any sane person remembers as an absurd travesty of justice where a bamboozled jury let a killer free.

  9. commonsensewillprevailihope
    06/21/2010 at 12:25 PM

    On the other hand, I can see the appeal it has to a guilty defendant.

    • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
      06/21/2010 at 12:29 PM

      Not if they have looked at his recent record. The Media Obsessed Attention Whore, isn’t that the name of his website, lol, didn’t help out Phil Spector or Michael Petersen much, did he?

      • commonsensewillprevailihope
        06/21/2010 at 12:32 PM

        Agreed. I was being sarcastic sort of. Maybe I should say, I see the appeal to a (delusional) guilty defendant.

        • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
          06/21/2010 at 12:39 PM

          Commonsense,
          Complete aside while we wait, why are there long unicode blocks at the end of your messages? Also, sorry, I am overwrought with the suspense. If I had known Henry Lee was testifying for sure in person this am, I would have taken the train down to be in the courtroom myself. I still do not know if that happened or he was on Skype.

    • Craig
      06/21/2010 at 12:30 PM

      It sounds like Lee just wrapped up. We should be updating soon.

  10. WhatACase
    06/21/2010 at 12:33 PM

    For whatever reason, jury consultants must believe that jurors may still be wowed by Lee—his celebrity, etc. I presume the defense picked Lee back when a jury trial was still in play. But will this judge give any extra credence to what this disgraced “expert for hire” has to say? I wouldn’t count on it.

    • Corgivet
      06/21/2010 at 2:58 PM

      Lee never fails to underwhelm me with his explanations.. Did someone call him a media whore”. Lol

      • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
        06/21/2010 at 3:19 PM

        Yes, Corgivet, I confess, it was me, I referred to Dr. Lee as a Media Obsessed Attention Whore. Bill Orange won’t be accused of being the catty bitchy one today.

        If you have the time, check out this part of Dr. Lee’s website titled “The Winning Attitude” http://www.drhenrylee.com/about/#winatt

        It is really alarming, Lee comes right out & says he will do anything it takes to win. Anything it takes, because otherwise you are a loser with a problem.

        • gertiestn
          06/21/2010 at 3:25 PM

          Oh, my. Until I checked out that particular part of the good doctor’s web site, I hadn’t noticed that he lists, under “Education,” a string of honorary degrees. Like maybe the nonhonorary degrees aren’t enough?

          • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
            06/21/2010 at 3:39 PM

            Maybe not enough to justify what he charges for his “expert testimony”, rumored to be around 5k per day.

            The charges are not just for the testimony, you have document & evidence review (not sure if tampering is extra), as well as his preparation time to consider, & any reports that he generates.

            So he wants to match up the puffed up fees with the puffed up resume.

          • Craig
            06/21/2010 at 3:45 PM

            Taking Dr. Lee’s extensive work with ketchup into account, he could also have an honorary degree from Hamburger University.

            • David
              06/21/2010 at 3:47 PM

              Or I was thinking he could be a knight at White Castle!

              • Bea
                06/21/2010 at 3:58 PM

                He’s negotiating to license his name to Parker Bros. “Clue” board game to go head-to-head with Colonel Mustard! Dr. Ketchup in the office with a paring knife. . .

                • Bea
                  06/21/2010 at 4:02 PM

                  My bad – Hasbro. And I’m kidding.

              • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
                06/21/2010 at 4:02 PM

                A bit of a stretch guys, because as Kate & Bea have pointed out, in his prior courtroom ketchup demos (which sadly we were not treated to 1 today), Dr. Lee watered down the ketchup to lessen its thickness of consistency.

                If there is 1 thing that people don’t want in a ketchup dolloped on their fast food burger, it is a sense of watery runniness. I think they add things like Xanthan gum to make sure that does not happen.

                That being said, Dr. Lee has more potential IMHO as a future “Hamburger Helper”.

                • Kate
                  06/21/2010 at 5:03 PM

                  Hmmm, great ideas, one and all.

                  But there’s one thing Dr. Lee should know:

                  A HOTDOG should never go anywhere near the ketchup!

                  It is just not done in the finer circles … or low-brow foodie circles, come to think of it.

            • Daphne
              06/21/2010 at 4:39 PM

              LOL

            • tucsonwriter
              06/21/2010 at 8:26 PM

              VERY funny.

        • tucsonwriter
          06/21/2010 at 3:27 PM

          I caught that too. I have recently been reading a psychology book about rational beliefs vs irrational ones. The author, Albert Ellis, calls irrational beliefs “mustabatory” i.e. shoulds woulds must – i.e. always or never thinking.

          Lee is definitely a “mustabatory” thinker.

  11. Hoya Loya
    06/21/2010 at 12:35 PM

    Word is (via City Paper): more ketchup!

    • KiKi
      06/21/2010 at 12:41 PM
      • AnnaZed
        06/21/2010 at 12:51 PM

        How amazingly vulgar Dr. Lee is, how strange.

      • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
        06/21/2010 at 12:53 PM

        Such a strange analogy. I take it Dr. Lee has not been crossed yet. Ketchup in a bottle versus human blood pumping in a person are not AT ALL similar in thickness or consistency. For fun, I just tried it with both barbeque sauce as well as ketchup. (Full dsiclosure, both organic, not Heinz.)
        Both times the knife came out covered very thickly on both sides with the red stuff. Hope he is asked to demo this in court.

        • AnnaZed
          06/21/2010 at 12:59 PM

          Well exactly, I didn’t try this because I don’t have to. Is this sort of testimony just designed to shock and insult people? The consistency of blood and the consistency of ketchup are entirely different, even leaving aside the actions of a pumping heart on the posited situation, which is ridiculous. How on earth did this person become an expert on anything?

          • cinnamon
            06/21/2010 at 1:13 PM

            Honestly. This is making the pork loin test look so much better.

      • Bill Orange
        06/21/2010 at 1:01 PM

        From the link: “Analyzing photos of a kitchen knife found at the crime scene, Lee testified that blood stains on the dagger indicate a backward and forward motion, consistent with a stabbing. Lee went on to say that you would get the same sort of smears by “dipping” a knife into an open ketchup bottle and plunging it in and out. “Same principle,” he said.”

        Has he been crossed yet? The prosecution really needs to just hand him a knife and a ketchup bottle.

        • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
          06/21/2010 at 1:11 PM

          Look above. I said that at 12:53 pm. We are almost in sync.

      • chilaw79
        06/21/2010 at 1:37 PM

        Sometimes you just have to say, “What were they thinking?”

        There is a big difference between putting a knife into human flesh and a liquid like ketchup or barbecue sauce.

        Let’s just hope that the judge did not decide to leave her common sense at home today.

        The inconsistencies in the defense case just keep mounting up. First, they say there is no blood and now they say that the knife was inserted into a liquid. Then, Wone is dead immediately and now he lives on in the ambulance. Next, the defense may claim that Robert Wone fell on the knife three times in some bizarre accident.

        Creating inconsistencies in your own theory of the case does not create reasonable doubt. My view is that thus far the prosecution has done a better job of coming up with a consistent theory of the case.

        • Gama
          06/21/2010 at 2:54 PM

          I keep thinking about a line from the musical Chicago:

          “And then he ran into my knife! He ran into my knife TEN TIMES!”

          • Kate
            06/21/2010 at 3:54 PM

            That’s FUNNY!

            Thanks for the laugh, Gama.

            I now have an ear worm of the song in my head running over and over.

    • Kate
      06/21/2010 at 12:47 PM

      Say it ain’t so!

      Dr. Lee’s testimony in the Michael Peterson case was incredible, to say the least. Spitting blood to demonstrate how the victim caused the blood spatter patterns – with the victim’s children in the courtroom.

      I could no longer respect him after that ugly bit of showmanship … perhaps I’m old fashioned.

      Thanks Hoya for the heads up!
      Kate

      • Nora
        06/21/2010 at 2:08 PM

        “The victim’s children”?

        Now I’m even more confused….

        • Bea
          06/21/2010 at 2:12 PM

          Nora, Kate was referring to the Michael Peterson case regarding the “victim’s children” being in the courtroom during the ketchup experiment. In that case he actually SPAT blood to prove his point (which was, strangely, that there would be LESS blood on the walls/floor if the victim had been bludgeoned than if she fell).

          • Nora
            06/21/2010 at 2:18 PM

            Thanks, Bea – hadn’t read much about that one. Incredible is right!

    • Turtlejay
      06/21/2010 at 1:28 PM

      City Paper: “Lee went on to say that you would get the same sort of smears by ‘dipping’ a knife into an open ketchup bottle and plunging it in and out. ‘Same principle,’ he said. Lee’s testimony would suggest that the knife found at the scene might be the actual murder weapon.”

      I beg to differ. In addition to everyone else’s incredulous comments, how does this not “cut” (sorry) both ways equally? Could you not totally believe Lee and then infer that the defendants dipped the darn knife in the pesky ketchup??

      • Craig
        06/21/2010 at 1:34 PM

        Server troubles.. again! Bear with us. Errrrrrrrrr

        • Bill 2
          06/21/2010 at 1:48 PM

          No complaints – glitches happen. We’ve got patience and I promise we won’t ask for a refund.

        • tucsonwriter
          06/21/2010 at 2:25 PM

          Craig – Do you have any idea how many people are following this blog? I am amazed by how well you editors are doing! Better than the regular media by far.

          • Michael
            06/21/2010 at 7:57 PM

            I agree.

  12. gertiestn
    06/21/2010 at 1:57 PM

    “So you’re saying . . . this is an illusion?” Leibovitz asked.

    Excuse me; I seem to have fallen head over heels for this judge.

    • Bea
      06/21/2010 at 2:02 PM

      Move over, sister. Me too.

    • Michael
      06/21/2010 at 5:48 PM

      Leibovitz saying that is not only classic but even without hearing it it sounds snarky as hell.

    • cinnamon
      06/21/2010 at 5:49 PM

      I think this pretty much reveals her thoughts on Lee’s credibility.

  13. CDinDC (Boycott BP)
    06/21/2010 at 2:01 PM

    “As to the identified stains, Lee said stain 1B had a large semicircular area that came from a direct contact applying pressure to a bloody surface. 1B also contained stains that LEe described as “fingermarks” which showed movement upon contact with a bloody surface.”

    This sounds like Joe could have pressed the towel against Robert’s body to get the semicircular pattern and then grasped the knife blade to transfer the blood.

    • Kate
      06/21/2010 at 2:30 PM

      That’s how it sounds to me, CD.

  14. Bea
    06/21/2010 at 2:01 PM

    Does it strike anyone else that Dr. Lee is willing to do ‘experiments’ which will allow him to say what the defense wants him to say (i.e. prostitute)? The thing about blood on the edge of the knife sounds like Judge Leibovitz’s own a-ha moment. I hope she’s as smart as she seems . . .

    Still wondering about the damned ketchup: testimony staple, it appears, for the good doctor – rather, testimony condiment.

    • Nora
      06/21/2010 at 2:12 PM

      The cardinal sin of scientists: finding what you’re looking for. Is this the usual procedure among paid “experts?”

      • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
        06/21/2010 at 2:28 PM

        Don’t tar them all with that brush, Henry Lee really is willing to go the extra mile. In the Phil Spector trial, 3 witnesses, including a defense attorney named Sara Caplan (who had withdrawn) as well as a defense investigator, testified against Dr. Lee because they were so aghast at his TAMPERING with the evidence.

        “The judge concluded that Lee hid or destroyed evidence from Lana’s death scene, evidence that the prosecution contends was potentially damaging to Spector’s case.” For those who don’t know, Dr. Lee discovered & then disappeared a piece of the victim’s acrylic fingernail, which would have demonstrated that rather than shooting herself in the face as the defense claimed, she had put her hands up to cover her face from the gunshot, which then tore off the fingernail.

        “Judge Fidler on Wednesday called Lee a “world-renowned expert” but said, “I have to choose between the two, and Miss Caplan is more credible than Dr. Lee.” Fidler ruled that “Dr. Lee did recover an item that was flat, white and irregular around the edges”.

        The judge here will be determining both the credibility & weight to be given to the expert witness. All of them, on both sides.

        • Bea
          06/21/2010 at 2:37 PM

          I’m guessing this sanction was raised in cross.

          • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
            06/21/2010 at 2:50 PM

            Bea,
            Even if it was not, this judge is all about sua sponte. She jumps right in with very penetrating questions/comments of her own accord. That illusion remark was priceless.

            When she ultimately decides the credibility of CME David Fowler compared to that of Dr. Lee, as well as the weight she assigns to their testimony, from the way she remembers every single word that CME Fowler said, it doesn’t appear to be a close contest.

            • Josh
              06/21/2010 at 3:46 PM

              I’m no lawyer, and I suppose this would be out of order, but if I were in a position to ask a single question it would be: “Dr. Lee, How many times have you turned down a fee or returned a retainer because upon examining the evidence you concluded in good conscience that it spoke against the side that had hired you?”

              • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
                06/21/2010 at 4:17 PM

                Your question contains the assumption that Dr. Lee has a “good conscience”.

                A fact not in evidence. His website already states flat out that the answer you are looking for is NOT part of a “Winning Attitude”.

        • Carolina
          06/21/2010 at 7:50 PM

          Can you explain how it is that Lee wasn’t charged with tampering? Someone asked earlier when expert testimony crosses over into perjury, which I understand is harder to pin down. However, in the case of Dr. Lee and the Missing Manicure, there were witnesses, yet he was not charged.

          It seems the cumulative effect is to give expert witnesses, and thereby defense teams, carte blanche to lie and tamper, with no repercussions for the either. What am I missing?

          • Bea
            06/21/2010 at 7:57 PM

            Carolina, my guess is that while the judge found Dr. Lee to less credible than the young woman, that isn’t to say it would withstand ‘beyond a reasonable doubt.’ The sanction alone should be sufficient to show his true colors, much as I’d like a perjury conviction to seal it.

            • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
              06/21/2010 at 8:57 PM

              Carolina & Bea,
              People often ask why after a criminal conviction defense witnesses aren’t charged with perjury & I can only tell you why I would never bring such charges.

              It makes the government seem too over-reaching, too powerful. The suggestion overall has a chilling effect on the fundamental right to a defense.

              In the end, the juice just isn’t worth the squeezing. The prosecutor would come across as overly vindictive & a SORE WINNER to boot.

              I know that there has been comment about the strangeness of seeing the affable way the attorneys from both sides interact in the hallways. Many defense attorneys are former prosecutors who may be socially quite friendly with their former colleagues.

              One of my closest confidantes is a former office mate who is now a member of The Public Defender’s Office. He turned to the dark side because TPDO has a higher payscale. I have sat in on his cases to offer him technical advice despite the fact that I despise his clients. I just don’t despise their lawyer.

              He could be making 10 times as much if he went private. Go figure.

              • Carolina
                06/21/2010 at 9:16 PM

                In general, I agree with this. I was just curious in this matter as it seemed he actually went farther than “interpreting” and stepped into “tampering.” I suppose he could have said he lost it, but since he claimed he never had it in the first place…

            • Carolina
              06/21/2010 at 9:14 PM

              That makes sense. I was under the impression there were multiple witnesses, most of whom were on Spector’s team.

    • Kate
      06/21/2010 at 2:36 PM

      “Testimony condiment,” that’s truly funny.

      Folks have commented that ketchup is much thicker than blood. I seem to recall in the M. Peterson case that the ever-inventive Dr. Lee watered down the ketchup to be more consistent with blood for his courtroom demonstration.

      Bea, do you remember that little factoid, as well?

      • Bea
        06/21/2010 at 2:40 PM

        He did ‘water it down’ indeed. Right before he spat it at a poster board. Great behind the scenes stuff in the documentary ‘The Staircase’ about the Michael Peterson case, including the prep before Dr. Lee took the stand where they whittled down and puffed up the testimony Dr. Lee would provide. Not a pretty picture of jurisprudence.

        • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
          06/21/2010 at 2:53 PM

          I can’t believe Judge L isn’t seeing through this nonsense. I can’t believe ANY judge wouldn’t see through it. Henry Lee lost his credibility long ago.

          • Michael
            06/21/2010 at 3:47 PM

            I think she IS seeing through this guy.

            • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
              06/21/2010 at 8:52 PM

              LOL That’s what I meant…I didn’t phrase it correctly in my haste.

        • Kate
          06/21/2010 at 4:11 PM

          Thanks, Bea – I’m going to have to get a copy of “The Staircase” documentary you mentioned – sounds fascinating … and sad.

          Then I won’t need to trouble you to confirm my sometimes nebulous recollections!

    • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
      06/21/2010 at 3:53 PM

      Good thing he didn’t do those experiments in his “little lab at home.” LOL

  15. KV
    06/21/2010 at 2:19 PM

    “Would he expect no movement, and would he expect no defensive wounds from a sleeping victim? Yes, to both questions.”

    Sounds odd. Even for a sleeping person wouldn’t reflexes like clutching their chest kick in, assuming they have not been drugged or otherwise incapacitated? Any comments from medical pros here are appreciated?

    • tucsonwriter
      06/21/2010 at 2:27 PM

      Fowler, who was the head ME from Maryland, was amazed by lack of blood on Robert Wone’s hands. If you are stabbed, you will clutch your chest was my paraphrase of his testimony. Plus he said death would not have been instantaneous.

      The only way a stab victim wouldn’t clutch their chest is if they were physically restrained – there were padded restraints in the home. Found in the home.

    • Bea
      06/21/2010 at 2:28 PM

      Besides being contrary to the prosecution witnesses, it does defy common sense. And 60%? I hope the cross was thorough and blistering.

      • Carolina
        06/21/2010 at 7:52 PM

        Maybe 50% are stabbed in the back? Pretty hard to grab your wound if it’s between your shoulders.

    • galoon
      06/21/2010 at 3:35 PM

      “When his chest was pierced, he clenched his fist. His arm pulled up slowly as if he were lifting something and then released. The motion repeated.”
      This comment is from a reporter who witnessed the firing squad execution of a man in Utah this past weekend. The prisoner was bound to a chair so the clenched fist was the only movement he could make. I thought immediately of Joe’s interview with police when he described Robert’s clenched fist, how he detailed how Robert gripped his thumb.
      Robert’s lack of defensive wounds has nothing to do with sleeping and everything to do with being bound in some way.

      • AnnaZed
        06/21/2010 at 3:39 PM

        Galoon! That is a remarkable piece of deduction, well observed.

        • galoon
          06/21/2010 at 3:51 PM

          Thanks AZ.

          • tucsonwriter
            06/21/2010 at 5:25 PM

            A bit chilling really some of what Joe Price said in testimony. He seems to know too much – to have seen too much.

    • Carolina
      06/21/2010 at 5:19 PM

      If someone pokes me in the middle of the night, I move. I don’t think I’m abnormal in this. Is it unusual? Does everyone else out there in Blogland stay immobile?

    • Bill Orange
      06/21/2010 at 6:11 PM

      You don’t need an MD to know that no one sleeps through three stab wounds to the chest.

      • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
        06/21/2010 at 7:10 PM

        Some people do not seem to have the kind of body awareness that you would normally expect. People show up at Emergency Departments with knives in their backs which they did not know were there until someone told them. There are people who have been shot with bullets but did not realize it until after they heard about a shooting on the news. My personal favorite as it was an element in a case I had, is the number of females who show up at Emergency Departments in full term labor, who really had no prior idea they were even pregnant at all.

        I hope Robert Wone did not feel anything.

  16. Rich
    06/21/2010 at 2:27 PM

    Easy question for youse Legal Wonks or Courtroom Watchers:

    If JUDGE LEIBOWITZ RULES THIS WEEK WITH GUILTY VERDICTS RESULTING IN JAIL TIME, WILL THE DEFENDANTS be immediately taken into custody or do they have until sentancing?

    Or, worse, even more time to organize after the sentancing?

    If after sentancing, how long do we have before sentancing?

    3 months? More or less

    • Bea
      06/21/2010 at 2:35 PM

      Rich, I think others in the know about DC practice (not me) have indicated that she may render a verdict quickly or may take a while depending on whether she does so via written opinion. My take on this case is that she’ll do a written opinion as she works through her verdict as she’s a careful judge/jurist. I wouldn’t expect the verdict “same day” by any means. As for sentencing, I don’t know if there will be a delay or not but a pure guess from me is that she’ll be sentencing them quickly. Given that they’ve been out on bail, I expect that will continue UNTIL she sentences them. I don’t see them being out pending appeal (assuming guilty verdict here). Of course, a not guilty means they go home immediately.

      • CC Biggs
        06/21/2010 at 2:42 PM

        I think release pending appeal is left to the discretion of the judge.

      • KiKi
        06/21/2010 at 2:44 PM

        I agree with Bea that they will remain on bail pending sentencing. She could revoke the bail as bail after conviction has a different (less strict) standard than bail when the defendant is still “innocent.” But in a case such as this she will likely continue bail – just a guess.

        As far as when sentencing will happen. There will be a delay as the court will prepare a pre sentence report which takes some time and the defense may also create their own pre sentence filing. Defense can waive delays but that is highly unlikely. There may be a specific time limit but it has been about six years since i practiced in DC and can’t remember if there is or not.

  17. Hoya Loya
    06/21/2010 at 2:28 PM

    10ccs is a lot of blood? I’m not in love with that testimony.

    • can'tstopreading
      06/21/2010 at 2:43 PM

      That has got to be a mistake. 10 ccs is 1 teaspoon!

      • can'tstopreading
        06/21/2010 at 2:43 PM

        -correction, 2 teaspoons.

        • tucsonwriter
          06/21/2010 at 3:20 PM

          Two teaspoons from a traumatic, death inducing wound…. a stabbing that hit a major vein…. oh boy! This guy is a nut job. His website is disturbing.

          At what point does that (kind of commentary) become perjury?

      • cinnamon
        06/21/2010 at 2:47 PM

        I was once getting a “contrast” injection for an MRI and the technician accidentally missed the vein and the liquid went into my tissue. He said to me “don’t worry it’s only a tiny amount, 10cc” Those were his exact words. 10cc is not alot. I had a welt the size of a bee sting.

        • Bea
          06/21/2010 at 3:11 PM

          I am a klutz and I’ve been to the ER on three different occasions needing stitches, twice from slicing/dicing and getting my finger (my spouse thinks I am a hazard in the kitchen). I am staring at my quarter-inch scars as I type and remember how much blood I lost before being convinced to go to the ER – this is ridiculous.

    • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
      06/21/2010 at 3:10 PM

      Hoya Loya,
      You are not in love, wait until you find out Dr. Lee didn’t say it was 10 ccs. Dr. Lee’s actual testimony, it was “That’s not little, that’s 5 to 10 ccs.”

      So as little as 1 teaspoon, possibly as much as 2 teaspoons. Posters on this site have been overly generous in going with the top of the range of Dr. Lee’s estimate.

      • Hoya Loya
        06/21/2010 at 3:35 PM

        But 5cc didn’t have any hits.

        In any event, as I noted the other day, Fowler set the bar incredibly high for the defense because he not only exuded an air of authority (from all reports), with the credentials and experience to back it up, but his opinions also coincided nicely with common sense. If the judge is weighing differing opinions of opposing, credentialed experts, it comes down to credibility as you noted, and odds are she’ll side with the view that is most logical.

        • cinnamon
          06/21/2010 at 4:15 PM

          “But 5cc didn’t have any hits”

          By the way, I got this joke.

          Also, I feel that Fowler was more credible because his answers left some room for opposing views or a slim chance that something else could have happened. Lee, on the other hand, seems to answer the questions with 100% certainty that his opinion is correct and there is no other option.

          • Hoya Loya
            06/21/2010 at 4:30 PM

            Exactly — Fowler did not say there should have been gallons more blood or that the knife was absolutely not the weapon or that Robert could have lived for 45 minutes in order to fix a desirable timeline. He conceded that most bleeding would have been internal but that there should have been more when pressure was applied, that either knife could have been the weapon but “Dylan’s knife” was more likely (handle bruises, etc.) and that Robert would have been conscious for less than a minute but should have reacted somehow.

            On the defense side we are told the knife was definitely the weapon, 5 to 10ccs is plenty of blood, PEA went on for 12 minutes (conveniently two minutes before the 911 call) — basically pure contradiction of the government’s experts rather than considered, nuanced but differing opionions that could raise genuine doubt and I think the latter is what this judge is looking for.

            I think the only point Dr. Lee may have scored was the presence of hair and fatty tissue on the knife and its credibility was undercut by the ketchup bottle analogy and the photo “illusion,” never mind the assasins (can’t believe he actually went there).

            • Bea
              06/21/2010 at 4:55 PM

              Agree. In watching Lee in action (via video) in other trials, it seems that he has no common sense about when to shut up. Must come with the territory in being willing to stretch facts to fit testimony. The assassin thing does not help anyone, only serves to discredit him.

            • Carolina
              06/21/2010 at 5:24 PM

              If the largest wound was gaping enough that a man might insert his finger, than I see no problem with the fat being transferred to the knife via towel.

              As for body hair, I could see the same thing happening. It isn’t ask if Asian men are known for their bearish chests, so I’m wondering exactly how much and what kind of hair we’re talking here.

        • leo
          06/21/2010 at 4:42 PM

          Fowler indeed “exuded an air of authority,” bolstered immensely by the fact that “his opinions also coincided nicely with common sense.” Lee’s testimony does not comport with common sense. I’m wondering how DiMaio’s is going; he is the defense’s forensic pathologist, and one might assume he will directly rebut Fowler’s testimony. If he’s as asinine as Lee, the defense is in very bad shape. I’m planning to attend the trial tomorrow in hopes of catching closing arguments. Or possibly more defense “experts.”

        • Carolina
          06/21/2010 at 7:54 PM

          And “I’m Not In Love” with either Lee or DiMaio’s explanations.

    • Sean
      06/21/2010 at 6:03 PM

      Y’all should have heard the example Lee used to illustrate that point. “If you cut your finger, it will take a long time for 10 ccs to drip out” (not an exact quote). No mention, of course, of the difference between a cut on a finger and a fatal stab wound.

      • cinnamon
        06/21/2010 at 6:07 PM

        Just crazy. If we were talking about just a cut finger, we wouldn’t be in court!

      • Carolina
        06/21/2010 at 7:55 PM

        Any question how he lit upon the 5-10 cc number? Did he pour watery catsup on a towel?

  18. CDinDC (Boycott BP)
    06/21/2010 at 2:29 PM

    “Lee said that the blood pattern on the towel was consistent with a hand holding it to put pressure on a wound.” (From BLT)

    This seems a bit like a smoke screen to me….whether Joe held a towel to Robert’s chest has never been in question.

    • Carolina
      06/21/2010 at 5:29 PM

      If that’s all he’s got, a smoke screen will have to do. Notice that fiber science and transfer patterns are a solid science when Lee testifies, but under Deetrick, it’s new and unproven.

      I mean, really, he can detect *movement* in the fingerprints as they pressed against the wound? The only way you could claim this is if there were identical imprints repeated at intervals– as if he pressed down with all five fingers here, then moved and the same pattern repeated. Even then, you’d be stretching it to say it was the same hand.

  19. CC Biggs
    06/21/2010 at 2:40 PM

    Isn’t that the towel that Price supposedly held to Wone’s open wound? For Dr. Lee to suggest that the towel showed a significant amount of blood given these circumstances seems utterly ridiculous.

    • KV
      06/21/2010 at 3:14 PM

      And one of the wounds was quite large — reportedly big enough to put your hand in. With a wound that size much larger blood stains would seem to follow on the towel, IMO.

      • tucsonwriter
        06/21/2010 at 3:24 PM

        I question this. I saw this on another website – that one of the wounds was large enough to put your hand in. That however does not seem consistent with the ME’s testimony of “surgical precision” as to the wounds.

        Does anyone recall if this is accurate or not?

        • AnnaZed
          06/21/2010 at 3:25 PM

          My recollection is that the EMT said “finger” not had, as in it gaped open and he could have put his finger into it (the wound).

          • AnnaZed
            06/21/2010 at 3:26 PM

            hand

            • KV
              06/21/2010 at 4:03 PM

              Thanks for the correction.

            • Nelly
              06/21/2010 at 4:25 PM

              That’s right. It was the TruTV article online that erroneously reported that one of the wounds was big enough to fit a hand into. News articles soon after Robert’s murder said it was big enough for a finger to fit into.

            • Carolina
              06/21/2010 at 4:29 PM

              This was the correct statement. Finger, not hand. Still, though, a fingersized knife wound is going to yield bleeding and I think we’ve all had enough personal experience to know that what’s on that towel doesn’t measure up.

              • KV
                06/21/2010 at 8:55 PM

                “a fingersized knife wound is going to yield bleeding and I think we’ve all had enough personal experience to know that what’s on that towel doesn’t measure up.”

                One look at the towel picture convinced me. As far as a finger-sized self-sealing wound (per the defense), now that takes a bit more convincing.

          • cinnamon
            06/21/2010 at 4:21 PM

            This is my recollection as well. Finger, not hand.

            • leo
              06/21/2010 at 4:46 PM

              Right, the “hand” quote is wrong. But the wounds were also said to be “self-sealing,” so even one big enough to put a finger in was not open and bleeding profusely (like one of Bea’s cut fingers).

              • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
                06/21/2010 at 4:52 PM

                The defense said self-sealing to explain lack of blood.

                I would imagine if a wound was gaping enough to put your finger(s) in it, it was open and bleeding at one point.

                Again, Robert was not necessarily stabbed in that room. The linens on the bed were not even wrinkled.

                • Turtlejay
                  06/21/2010 at 8:17 PM

                  Remember – from Joe Price’s own lips – he “was stabbed in the back.”

  20. commonsensewillprevailihope
    06/21/2010 at 2:45 PM

    When the experts differ, doesn’t this devalue both sides a bit, and make it likely the judge will rely on common sense,  within reason, to get a sense of what really happened? Isn’t the judge accustomed to experts disagreeing on just about everything, so she is unlikely to automatically cast everything subject to such disagreement as under a cloud of doubt.

  21. AnnaZed
    06/21/2010 at 2:57 PM

    You know, I have to concede that it was something of a stroke of genius on Joe’s part to have called the ambulance even 45 minutes to an hour after Robert was attacked and to have had Victor insist that Robert was still breathing and had only been recently stabbed. I think that’s why he insisted that the chimes and grunts and discovery of the body were so close together ~ not we heard grunts and chimes and after thinking about it for fifteen minutes or so I went to check it out.

    That way no matter how cold and obviously dead Robert was the EMTs would be duty bound to begin measures to save him, measures that would be bound to obscure what actually happened, most particularly as to blood on his person and needle marks. He needed some sort of medical attention to be paid, not to save Robert because that sure was not going to happen but to hopefully create chaos and thus maybe reasonable doubt as to what happened. Didn’t work, but it was an inspired effort on his part.

    • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
      06/21/2010 at 3:26 PM

      “Oh what a tangled web we weave,
      When first we practise to deceive!”
      (Sir Walter Scott)

    • Carolina
      06/21/2010 at 4:32 PM

      It’s painful to think he was that calculating. I hate to think of any fellow human being so cold, and when they are I like to think it’s mental illness at work. All of that aside, I think you’re on to something.

  22. commonsensewillprevailihope
    06/21/2010 at 3:33 PM

    I am sure the judge is accustomed to conflicting experts. That happens in every case. It doesn’t per se create reasonable doubt. She will use common sense to make sense of what happened here. My humble view.

  23. Michael
    06/21/2010 at 3:52 PM

    Would anyone like to speculate approximately how much Dr. Lee is paid for his testimony?

    • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
      06/21/2010 at 3:53 PM

      Too much.

      • Bea
        06/21/2010 at 4:05 PM

        Someone mentioned $5K per day of testimony, plus all those “experiments” in his refrigerator, er, “lab” at an hourly rate – plus luxury travel and accommodations. $50K or more?

        • Pshep
          06/21/2010 at 9:13 PM

          I was in court today. Kershner asked how much he was being paid by the defense. Lee testified “10 – 20k”.

    • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
      06/21/2010 at 4:07 PM

      I’ve already addressed that, his fee is rumored to be around 5k per day.

      The charges are not just for the testimony, you have document & evidence review (not sure if tampering is extra), as well as his preparation time to consider, & any reports that he generates.

      And you thought crime does not pay!

  24. CDinDC (Boycott BP)
    06/21/2010 at 3:57 PM

    From the City Paper:

    “Lee backed up the sleep theory, but also brought up another possibility: “A martial art expert can hold a joint and the victim cannot move,” he said. Lee also mentioned that an “assassin” might also be able to do it.”

    Lee is talking ninjas assasins now.

    • Bea
      06/21/2010 at 4:03 PM

      Dr. Ketchup will indeed pin it on Colonel Mustard, ninja assassin!

      • Carolina
        06/21/2010 at 4:36 PM

        Now in the column of reasonable doubt:

        An alien did it.

        A Tibetan monk levitated in and out.

        A ninja assassin did the Secret Ninja Hold.

        Joe would never have ruined his own good linens.

        • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
          06/21/2010 at 5:41 PM

          Carolina,
          Now that the towel Dr. Lee marked up has been posted, take a look at the figure identified as 1B. It does look like an alien face. 1B.

          Perhaps that is what inspired Dr. Lee’s line of um, “thinking”.

          • Carolina
            06/21/2010 at 6:10 PM

            A veritable Shroud of Swann Street.

            • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
              06/21/2010 at 6:32 PM

              Well said, Carolina. I am caught between your post & CDinDC’s “Crouching Tiger Hidden Sex Toys” as the best 1 liner of the day.

              Dr. Lee’s stunning evocation of the alien ninja assassin who mysteriously cleaned too much reminds me of the X file tagline, “The Truth Is Out There!”

    • Craig
      06/21/2010 at 4:04 PM

      Martial arts?!?!? It’s official then; Henry Lee must be a reader here. But maybe he took the Ninja chatter a little too seriously?

    • Daphne
      06/21/2010 at 4:04 PM
      • Bea
        06/21/2010 at 4:07 PM

        Wow, the wiped knife would have flown up and hit the guy in the forehead? WTF?

        • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
          06/21/2010 at 4:42 PM

          Thank you Daphne for posting that link. Apparently so, Bea, if the judge finds Dr. Lee to be both credible & convincing.

          “Lee somewhat unbelievably disagreed, and subsequently mimed how the knife could fly up and cut Kirschner in the forehead.”

          Sounds like projection to me, Dr. Lee really wanted to actually cut off the Prosecutor himself at that point, and he was not just miming about his theory of the case.

          Too early to call this as Ben Franklin has not weighed in yet, but it doesn’t sound like a great day for the defense.

          • Kate
            06/21/2010 at 5:30 PM

            And, dear lady, we mustn’t forget tassojunior! He has been enamored of the fence-jumping ninja for ever so long.

            Also, many thanks to Daphne for the great link. I’m ashamed to admit it, but I had a good belly laugh after reading the article.

            My overall reaction: incredulity.

        • Carolina
          06/21/2010 at 6:14 PM

          Am I alone in wanting to see both the pantomime of the knife hitting Kirschner in the forehead and Kirschner’s reaction?

        • Turtlejay
          06/21/2010 at 8:28 PM

          “wiped knife would have flown up and hit the guy in the forehead”

          Wow, I finally have a theory that would work . . . It was He Who Must Not Be Named or maybe just Draco Malfoy.

        • Carolina
          06/21/2010 at 9:20 PM

          I am glad I am not the only one driven to WTFdom.

    • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
      06/21/2010 at 4:07 PM

      I’m waiting for the ray guns and xray vision glasses.

      • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
        06/21/2010 at 4:37 PM

        Does 1509 have a fireplace? Maybe Santa came down the chimney.

        • Kate
          06/21/2010 at 5:33 PM

          Could it be “Bad Santa?”

          Alas, I don’t think there’s a fireplace at 1509 Swann, but thank you for the smile, CD.

          Cheers,
          Kate

    • ccf
      06/21/2010 at 4:36 PM

      A joint? OK, what kind of joint?

      • Carolina
        06/21/2010 at 4:38 PM

        If he told you, he’d have to… well, you know that joke.

      • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
        06/21/2010 at 4:40 PM

        LOL

      • Kate
        06/21/2010 at 5:41 PM

        Took me a moment to figure out your joke, ccf – but I must say, very funny indeed!

        Although I am now an upstanding citizen, there was a day when I know what kind of joint I’d be tokin’ on, I mean, reaching for ….

        Great turn of phrase, thanks,
        Kate

  25. commonsensewillprevailihope
    06/21/2010 at 4:18 PM

    The martial arts thing illustrates how absurd the defense arguments are. It strikes me as damaging when you need to reach for examples like that. Thanks for coming Henry.

    • Daphne
      06/21/2010 at 4:25 PM

      That’s a good point. The more outlandish the alternatives the more likely it looks like the defendants were involved.

      • Carolina
        06/21/2010 at 4:38 PM

        If I were Joe Price, I’d give Bernie a good thrashing over this. Or ask Dylan to.

        • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
          06/21/2010 at 4:45 PM

          Dylan? Thrash someone? Please, Dylan would not so much as even spank a very bad child.

          • tucsonwriter
            06/21/2010 at 5:00 PM

            So what does that make Joe Price? (re: pictures JP had of himself with Dylan)

            • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
              06/21/2010 at 5:14 PM

              A liar who cannot stop lying.

              Joe told the police Dylan would never hit anyone or even spank a child.

              I was referring to Joe Price’s original statement to the police “There’s NO WAY on the face of the earth that Dylan COULD EVEN PUNCH SOMEBODY (emphasis added).

              I know Victor and Dylan better than I know my mom. They (WARD and Zaborsky) couldn’t EVEN SPANK A CHILD THAT WAS BEING BAD. (emphasis added.”

              • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
                06/21/2010 at 5:19 PM

                I think that was BEFORE the unconventional sexual practices were made public.

                Say what, Joe?

                • tucsonwriter
                  06/21/2010 at 5:28 PM

                  This is really out in left field but I think Ward and Price are both from military families.

                  • Carolina
                    06/21/2010 at 5:43 PM

                    Price, definitely. Dad was Navy, I believe.

                    • tucsonwriter
                      06/21/2010 at 6:37 PM

                      Ward is the son of “prominant Army cardiologist”Needham Ward

                    • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
                      06/21/2010 at 6:38 PM

                      Dylan’s father was in the Army.

  26. Nelly
    06/21/2010 at 4:33 PM

    Dr. Lee sounds like a clown for hire. With his exorbitant fees, he might as well provide some more entertainment by demonstrating with the boys’ toys and spitting some Heinz 57. What an embarrassment for the defense. I wonder if it was even necessary to cross-examine Dr. Lee about how a victim could be immobilized by a martial artist pressing on a joint.

    • Carolina
      06/21/2010 at 4:46 PM

      My question would then be, what did the ninja want? Robert was not a man who would arouse the ire of anyone willing to track him for weeks, then plan and execute such a thing.

      But then asking it gives the theory credence, which is just plain sad.

      • tucsonwriter
        06/21/2010 at 6:26 PM

        The ninja cleaned their house quietly and took all the cameras, needles, blood soaked sheets, jumped the wall without touching it but mistakenly landed on the turtle toy lid next door, crushing it.

        Bad ninja!

  27. Bea
    06/21/2010 at 4:41 PM

    Thoughts for rebuttal: (1) deal with dangling PEA issue; (2) bring back Fowler to deal with DiMao and Lee; (3) bring back Deedrick – pork loin beats ketchup bottle.

    • commonsensewillprevailihope
      06/21/2010 at 4:46 PM

      Really….all that wailing during the prosecution case seems a little amusing now given how clunky and unprofessional some of the defense case is turning out to be.

      • Bea
        06/21/2010 at 4:49 PM

        I am hoping that the cross exam by AUSA was as good as it should have been as to both Lee and DiMaio.

      • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
        06/21/2010 at 5:21 PM

        I certainly don’t see any defense groupies struttin’ and crowing and giving each other high 5s.

    • Lyn
      06/21/2010 at 4:51 PM

      “pork loin beats ketchup bottle”

      I’m picturing an odd alternative game of rock, paper, scissors.

    • chilaw79
      06/21/2010 at 7:40 PM

      When the pork loin testimony was given, I thought it was a little strange, despite the fact that the various forensic shows always say that pig flesh is a lot like human flesh, etc. Still, I thought it was the weakest part of the prosecution’s case.

      In retrospect, it seems like serious scientific evidence compared to Dr. Lee’s testimony and his proposed (but never conducted) ketchup experiment.

      I wonder whether the judge ever thought she would hear testimony in one single case about pork loins, fence-jumping defense attorneys, ketchup and ninjas.

  28. Lyn
    06/21/2010 at 4:50 PM

    Is “Dr.” Lee qualified to provide expert testimony with regard to martial arts and assassins?

    • ccf
      06/21/2010 at 4:54 PM

      All Asians are experts in martial arts.

      Except for me. I’m Asian and I am divorced.

      Wait!

      • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
        06/21/2010 at 5:22 PM

        No you di’nt.

      • Kate
        06/21/2010 at 5:52 PM

        ccf – you’re in rare form today. Great posts.

    • cinnamon
      06/21/2010 at 4:58 PM

      good point

    • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
      06/21/2010 at 5:16 PM

      Crouching Tiger Hidden Sex Toys

      • Kate
        06/21/2010 at 5:57 PM

        A-ha CD – you’re on to something. Perhaps that’s how the cameras and other stuff disappeared from the scene. They did that elegant air-walky thing out the window, perhaps?

        Cheers,
        Kate

        • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
          06/21/2010 at 8:58 PM

          oh em gee…..I’m dying at that visual. Joe in his tidy whities cascading through the air with a CVS bag of evidence.

  29. tucsonwriter
    06/21/2010 at 4:57 PM

    I was reading about this on another site – which sourced this site as a reference – nice little infinity reality loop- two things I was struck by.

    1) The police were about to make an arrest when the burglary of Swann Street happened. The arrest candidate was Dylan Ward. Something about the burglary made it so that the police could not subsequently follow through on the arrest.

    2) Dylan Ward’s numerous trips to Asia… China and Thailand. The site suggested he had a thing for Asians.

    • Carolina
      06/21/2010 at 5:46 PM

      He lived abroad for some time with an Asian couple, I believe.

  30. CDinDC (Boycott BP)
    06/21/2010 at 5:07 PM

    Something that keeps coming to mind, is the number of stab wounds and the possible length of time between the wounds. It seems most people speak of the wounds in a set and in rapid succession. Perhaps the first wound was in the abdomen and nearby. Seeing that this wound was not sufficient to kill Robert, perhaps he was stabbed AGAIN in the heart area a few minutes after the initial stabbing and right before they called 911 to make sure he died.

    The stabbing could have been in more than one phase and stretched out over 15 or more minutes.

    Not to mention, the signs of suffocation. Suffocation didn’t work. First and second stab wounds didn’t work. a few minutes elapses. The third and final wound to his heart was enough to stop Robert’s breathing and pulse right before 911 was called. Hence, the signs of shock, possible tamponade, and PEA at the hospital.

    Goslinoski believed Robert did not die quickly. A stab wound to the abdomen could have caused Robert to linger longer than the defense is claiming.

    The orientation of the wounds (nearly identical) could still be achieved if Robert’s body and the assailant remained in basically the same position.

    • tucsonwriter
      06/21/2010 at 5:35 PM

      That really is a chilling scenario you offer.

      I think the assumption that the wounds are in rapid sequence arises from that is the way most violent crimes occur. I think this crime differs significantly from a random robbery or burglary that’s gone wrong.

    • Carolina
      06/21/2010 at 5:49 PM

      Damn you, CD. I was all for the three quick, nearly identical stabs *because* it meant Robert probably lost consciousness and died quickly.

      • tucsonwriter
        06/21/2010 at 6:13 PM

        I just read the autopsy report on this site.

        And comments about that on this site. Can’t remember the day – to whit- BOTH the coronary artery and the inferior vena cava were punctured. Either of them would have lead to death in minutes, 4-7 minutes tops.

        There is a drawing of the location of the stab wounds and everything else including in the autopsy report. The needle marks are really weird when you see them. And the stab wounds are pretty striking in the drawing. So similar in shape and size. Very precise.

        So the stab wounds were most likely done in quick succession by the same person.

    • AnnaZed
      06/21/2010 at 7:06 PM

      I too hate to contemplate this, but I think it is possible that his murderer (or murderers) tortured him by making the neat incisions over a period of time as he bled out in the bath. Horrible I know, but entirely possible given that I think this killing had a thrill-kill element to it.

      • chilaw79
        06/21/2010 at 7:49 PM

        I freaked myself out a little today doing the following Google search “Blood spatter knife wound” which led to a forensic forum called “Zeno’s Forensic Forum” dated July, 2006. The individual who posted poses a question about how much blood would result if an individual were stabbed in the heart while sitting in a bathtub. The individual claimed to be writing a book and said he had no intent of killing anyone.

        Eventually the poster wrote back in and said they had found that there would be relatively little blood loss especially if the victim was lying on his back.

        • tucsonwriter
          06/21/2010 at 8:16 PM

          Freaky deaky. It would be interesting to see the orientation of the bathtub in question.

          • tucsonwriter
            06/21/2010 at 9:14 PM

            I went to that site. The coincidence in the timing is quite disturbing.

  31. leo
    06/21/2010 at 5:24 PM

    “Missing” knife was in Tacoma all along! Whew, that explains a lot. Were Mrs. Ward and the sandbox lady the defense’s last witnesses? Closings could be tomorrow.

    • tucsonwriter
      06/21/2010 at 6:14 PM

      Actually the defense mentioned that on Day 1. That the knife was in Tacoma Wa.

  32. Bea
    06/21/2010 at 5:26 PM

    With due respect to Diane Ward, who must also be suffering, unless those knives (why produce two?) had some kind of numerical markings on them suggesting they came from the set AND a logical reason for the set having been broken up, I’d be at least skeptical. It’s his MOM for crying out loud.

    • cinnamon
      06/21/2010 at 5:30 PM

      Agree….and shouldn’t this knife at least have been tunred over and DNA tested to see if it travelled to Seattle after the fact.

      • Bea
        06/21/2010 at 5:32 PM

        Hope to hear from Eds. as to whether there was any numerical markings consistent with this being “the knife”, why she brought two, and whether she gave a logical explanation for having the set broken up.

        • cinnamon
          06/21/2010 at 5:45 PM

          Yes, I’d like to hear if there are numerical markings as well. But if there were, then why the second knife? Showing two knives seems to show uncertainty that this is THE knife that was kept from the set. I’d also like to hear the reason that this knife was removed from the set to begin with.

          • Bea
            06/21/2010 at 5:49 PM

            I checked the news reports for more details but all WJLA says is that the knife was missing from the set before it left Tacoma. That certainly does not help clear up the questions in my mind. Was it missing when she gave it to him? Was it so special that she kept it – but she doesn’t know which of the two it was?

            I have to assume there are numerical markings showing this to be a knife logically missing from the set.

            • AnotherSean
              06/21/2010 at 6:09 PM

              I watched some of the testimony today. There were numbers on the knives, but it’s not clear to me whether they were unique to that particular set of knives or to all knives that size produced by the company that produced them. The knife was distinguishable from the other two pieces (a larger knife and a fork) because it was significantly discolored. Mrs. Ward said that this was due to the dishwasher.

              Also, Mrs. Ward said that she specifically remembered keeping that particular knife for herself because it would fit into the space where she had a knife missing from her butcher block. She wasn’t sure when and where she gave the knives to Dylan, but she was sure she kept that knife back.

              • Bea
                06/21/2010 at 6:10 PM

                Did she come across as believable?

                • AnotherSean
                  06/21/2010 at 6:36 PM

                  I don’t know. I think she came across as someone who was doing whatever they could to help their son–as sincere and sympathetic as most mothers would I suppose. It wasn’t unbelievable. I just thought it was funny that she couldn’t remember a lot about giving the knives to Dylan but she could very specifically remember keeping that one knife–maybe pushing that point a little too hard.

                  • Bea
                    06/21/2010 at 6:46 PM

                    Thanks, AnotherSean. Any other first hand insight from folks in attendance? Credibility is more important here than anything as to Ms. Ward’s testimony.

              • Tarfunk
                06/21/2010 at 8:47 PM

                She said she was sure the knife was missing when she gave the set to Dylan, but she did NOT know for sure whether it was missing when she received the set back after the death of Mr. Ward’s father. She said this was a knife she might have kept because it fit into missing her slots in her knife block. She was not unequivocal that her knife was THE knife. So much so, in fact, that she actually sent two knives to the defense team earlier this year, since she wasn’t sure which one it might have been.

                • Carolina
                  06/21/2010 at 9:25 PM

                  This is a believable explanation. Yes, I would have found the missing knife and stuck it in the case, but I can see her casually handing it over as is.

        • Carolina
          06/21/2010 at 5:51 PM

          The numbers will only show if it came from the same type of set, not if it was THE knife missing from the box.

        • Sean
          06/21/2010 at 5:56 PM

          The blade was marked 4066, 12 cm as well as with the Wusthof insignia. Schertler, however, did not go into whether that proved or disproved that the knife came from the set. On cross, Ms. Lieber got Mrs. Ward to admit that she bought a number of knives in Germany, many of them Wusthofs, and that Mrs. Ward couldn’t be sure, even today, that this knife came from that set. Only that it fit in the case, and that she knew that the case was already missing a knife when it was given to Dylan. Mrs.

          • Bea
            06/21/2010 at 6:00 PM

            Any testimony as to why she gave an incomplete set to her son? Especially since she had one that fit the case?

            • Sean
              06/21/2010 at 6:05 PM

              She said she already had a carving set so she didn’t need the other two pieces, but that she did have a knife block where she stuck loose knives in for her own use. She would have used that small paring knife for that, but left the others in the set (which was purchased as a gift for her mother-in-law).

              • cinnamon
                06/21/2010 at 6:13 PM

                What? She bought an entire Wustoff carving set so that she could keep A PARING KNIFE? Then give the carving set away as a gift? Okay, odd as this sounds to me, I could maybe see this if the carving set was then presented in a new box. But it seems very odd to give a gift to someone that clearly shows a missing knife?

                • Sean
                  06/21/2010 at 6:16 PM

                  Well, what she said was that she bought the set and gave it to her mother in law, who died. When that happened, she got the set back. Upon receiving it, she put it in a closet to potentially give to her children. She can’t say for certain that thw paring knife was still in the set when she got it back. But that if it was, she would have taken it and used it herself.

                  • cinnamon
                    06/21/2010 at 6:25 PM

                    “She can’t say for certain that thw paring knife was still in the set when she got it back. But that if it was, she would have taken it and used it herself.”

                    Sigh. She would have taken it and used it herself? Seems weak. Seems like she’s trying to provide cover for her son and not get herself into any trouble at the same time.

                  • Bea
                    06/21/2010 at 6:42 PM

                    Actually makes it worse for me. How can you say for certain that you gave your son an incomplete set though you can’t remember if it “came back” to you whole or not. If it “came back” missing a knife perhaps. But nobody breaks up a set, particularly not if ‘gifting’ it. Apparently both knives she brought fit the knife block.

                    Curious about her demeanor and if it seemed like she was being truthful or if it seemed like she was reaching to save her son. I do feel for her.

                    • cinnamon
                      06/21/2010 at 6:50 PM

                      Yes, this is like saying that she just knows that if a paring knife comes into her life, she has to keep it.

                • Bea
                  06/21/2010 at 6:16 PM

                  She bought it for her mother-in-law but apparently did not give it to her. Why? So she must’ve opened it up for daily use (though she had no use for the carving set) and pilfered a paring knife from it? Doesn’t add up, as pointed out. And if then she gives the set to her Culinary Institute son, she keeps the paring knife which fit the set? Odd at best.

                  Still don’t understand why she brought two knives. Apparently both were able to fill her butcher block “empty” slot??

                  • cinnamon
                    06/21/2010 at 6:28 PM

                    Agree. It doesn’t add up. The paring knives are not expensive. Why not just get one if you need one and you are someone who is buying knives all the time. But to remove one from a set? As you say, Bea, it doesn’t add up?

          • cinnamon
            06/21/2010 at 6:02 PM

            Seems like non-committal testimony.

            • Bea
              06/21/2010 at 6:13 PM

              This is when you wished the MPD had unrestricted access to defendants’ photo albums to blow up photos of special occasion meals in the event this set was trotted out. Any friends out there who attended such meals? I am reminded of the OJ trial in which he denied ever owning Bruno Magli shoes (footprints) and then in the CIVIL trial the plaintiff found evidence by way of football color commentary which showed him wearing them. . .

              • Carolina
                06/21/2010 at 6:24 PM

                I’d also like to know why they were in his room, hidden. It just doesn’t play.

                • cinnamon
                  06/21/2010 at 6:42 PM

                  That part doesn’t strike me as that odd. A carving set isn’t something that you use everyday and I think alot of chefs and culinary students would say that they keep knives in other parts of the house other than the kitchen. Especially if they have their own case or box.

                • AnnaZed
                  06/21/2010 at 7:26 PM

                  Well, when I lived in digs with roommates I kept my good cutlery in my room. The best way to keep a knife sharp is to simply never let anyone else use it.

                  I also own the cadaver book, many mystery books and even some related to BDSM (not highlighted).

                  just sayin’

                  • Carolina
                    06/21/2010 at 8:13 PM

                    If I had random room mates, yes, I’d keep the good knives to myself. If I were in a couple/trouple relationship, I would have put the case in the kitchen, in a cupboard or drawer. Maybe that’s because I’d figure they wouldn’t use/ruin it, and also that I loathe clutter, especially in my own personal space.

                    As you said, YMMV.

              • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
                06/21/2010 at 8:23 PM

                Bea,
                The Plaintiff in the civil case didn’t “find” the photos of OJ wearing the Bruno Magli shoes.

                After the criminal case, then free-lance photographer Harry Scull claimed to have found a photograph he had taken of Simpson in 1993 that appeared to show him wearing a pair of the shoes at a public event, which was later published in the National Enquirer.

                Simpson’s defense team still insisted the photograph was doctored, although other pre-1994 photos kept appearing to show Simpson wearing the same Bruno Magli shoes since Harry Scull photos discovered his shot of them.

                Maybe history will repeat itself, after this trial, but before the civil proceedings, someone will come forward with a really damning piece of the missing evidence. And once that floodgate opens, another & another crashes thru it just won’t stop as the force of the truth drowns out all the lies.

                OJ testified that he would never even buy such a pair of “butt ugly” shoes.

          • AnnaZed
            06/21/2010 at 7:19 PM

            Good lord, I actually have one of those #4066 knives, the 12cm one too:

            http://www.wusthof.com/desktopdefault.aspx/tabid-75/105_read-103/52_view-121/categories-210

            I am pretty sure that I may never regard it quite the same way again. In fairness to Mrs. Ward it lives in a drawer type knife block with other knives not of the same makers or provenance. I also realize that I have no idea, not a glimmer of memory, of how or when I acquired it.

            • Carolina
              06/21/2010 at 8:14 PM

              Yes, but would you recall if you gave away it’s partners?

              Oh dear, are you also trained in martial arts?

              • RosieRiveted
                06/21/2010 at 9:31 PM

                Pardon the dumb question, BUT…does the status of the various and sundry Ward family knives have much bearing on the outcome of this case? All that needs to be proven is that the knife at the scene was not the murder weapon – or am I wrong?

            • Lee
              06/21/2010 at 8:39 PM

              Do you remember if you used the knife to kill anyone?

      • AnnaZed
        06/21/2010 at 6:57 PM

        With all due respect to all involved, what the fuck!

        I hope Themis and Bea can explain this to me but in what world can the defense produce something that is supposed to be evidence at trial at the ninth hour without allowing the prosecution to examine it?

        The matter of if it fits in the box is not the only thing pertinent about that knife. If the police could get a duplicate from the makers then so could the defense. I have said before that the handle material would be different on a new one or even one of the same vintage from a different run by the maker. There are all sorts of defining manufacturing marks and identifying features that identify things manufactured at or near the same time the identifying makers etchings and numbers (they are only model numbers when they appear on cutlery, not serial numbers) near the hilt being the least of them.

        I work for one of the very last hand fabricators of bicycle frames left in America and we can identify our work down to the month of fabrication based on all sorts of factors, not just serial numbers.

        That is brazen I think, but I am also wondering why it was even allowed.

        • Bea
          06/21/2010 at 7:05 PM

          Maybe the defense will validate the knife with a Wusthof expert – otherwise, I agree, that it doesn’t really resonate, particularly since AnotherSean who was there said her demeanor came across more that she was trying to save her son than anything (awaiting insight from others in court today as to credibility).

          While the defense doesn’t have to provide knives to the prosecution in advance, frankly if they thought it would exonerate Dylan they’d have done it a while ago as a means to get the charges dropped. Granted, I don’t think the prosecution needs the planted knife for the bulk of the charges, but the defense opted for a big a-ha moment of the missing knife rather than using it to prove Dylan’s innocence with the prosecutor. Maybe it would have been more effective with a jury, but that she couldn’t be sure didn’t really seem to help the defense much.

          • Sean
            06/21/2010 at 7:18 PM

            AnotherSean seems to share not only my first name, but my opinion as well. Mrs. Ward was crying as soon as she got onto the stand, and she seemed like a woman who wanted to save her son or believe her son did this, but also didn’t want to lie either.

            Regarding the two knives – she didn’t actually produce two knives in court. What happened was that she heard from one of her other sons that the police had seized the set in question. Then she sent two Wusthof knives to the defense team. One of them fit in the set, the other didn’t. Purely speculating, but I get the impression of her hearing that and then immediately going through all the Wusthof knives in her home to send them all to the defense to see if any might fit. It wasn’t an “if the knife does fit, you must acquit” moment, at least not to me.

            • Sean
              06/21/2010 at 7:20 PM

              That should be “or didn’t want to believe…”

            • Bea
              06/21/2010 at 7:21 PM

              Doesn’t sound ‘tight’ enough to quell the questions about the missing knife. Would that be an accurate assessment?

              • AnotherSean
                06/21/2010 at 7:40 PM

                Yes, it’s far from settling the knife question.

                I think her testimony would have been better for a jury.

                • Carolina
                  06/21/2010 at 8:18 PM

                  Did the number match the set?

                • Bea
                  06/21/2010 at 8:57 PM

                  AnotherSean, what was the general ‘era’ of the knife set (e.g. when did she originally give the mother in law the set)?

                  Curious what eBay provides. . .

      • susan
        06/21/2010 at 8:16 PM

        Hi cinnamon, I see you had the same thought. I posted before I read what you wrote.

    • ksb3064
      06/21/2010 at 5:37 PM

      Did Mrs. Ward’s crying on the stand have any visual impact on her son, who has been reported here as cool and detached from the proceedings? Putting your mother through something like this — even if you are innocent — and seeing her cry in court would be unbearable to most people.

      • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
        06/21/2010 at 5:59 PM

        Unbearable to most people, perhaps, but defendants do it all the time. I have previously predicted the mother’s testimony in that there are always 3 alibi witnesses you can count on popping up, the wife, the girlfriend & the mother.

        Since the wife & girlfriend are also on trial, the only available person left on the list was Dylan’s mother (as it was clearly Dylan’s knife set that was in question.)

        Bea has already pointed out in great detail all the questions that producing different knives belonging to a set would raise, it is the prosecutors who take no relish in cross examining the weeping Diane Ward. It is a horrible experience for people who do love their mothers.

        But Kathy Wone & the Wone family have lost Robert forever because he was murdered, and Dylan Ward is still very much alive. Diane Ward is suffering, her pain is very real, but the loss is not the same. If someone reports that Dylan appeared to be upset at his mother’s distress, I’d call that “acting” upset.

  33. Hoya Loya
    06/21/2010 at 5:27 PM

    So not one, but two knives showed up from Tacoma!

    • cinnamon
      06/21/2010 at 5:33 PM

      Just wierd. Which one is it? Doesn’t it seem odd that you would keep one of the knives from a set because you can’t part with it, so you give someone the partial set but then you can’t remember which knife it is. It boggles the mind.

      • commonsensewillprevailihope
        06/21/2010 at 5:51 PM

        how could the police and experts have overlooked that point by lee??????

        who keeps a knife set in their bedroom??

        who gives away a knife set and keeps one???

        • Carolina
          06/21/2010 at 5:54 PM

          Well, as AZ pointed out, 2/3 of a Wusthoff set is better than none. But still, who would give a partial set as a gift? Who knows. Like I said, this is the family that produced Dylan Ward. It’s hard to say what is logical in a family situation.

          • Formerly of 17th & NH
            06/21/2010 at 7:14 PM

            As odd as her not remembering is, I do know that I personally have talked my own mom into giving me things she doesn’t need or no longer uses, even if they are, in some cases, incomplete sets.

            3 dessert plates, a vintage silver serving tray with a missing handle, a mini-cuisinart chopper with a scorched cord, little fruit paintings she’d made (one with water damage), even an old charm bracelet with a broken clasp.

            I could see him just saying, hey mom, you aren’t using this, can I have it? Jut a thought.

            I feel very sorry for the mother. Also tremendously sorry, of course, for the Wone family. Such a sad and disturbing situation.

            • Formerly of 17th & NH
              06/21/2010 at 7:15 PM

              (Apologies for the typos.)

              • Carolina
                06/21/2010 at 8:22 PM

                No apology needed, and yes, those types of things make sense, particularly in a sentimental sense.

                But she had the third knife. Why not put it in the set and say, “Here, kid! Hope you stick with the career this time!”

                Maybe it’s just me, but if someone expressed need or interest in the incomplete set and I had multiple knives that performed the same function of the missing knife, I’d had pulled the utility knife out of the block and popped it back in the set case.

              • Carolina
                06/21/2010 at 8:23 PM

                No apology needed, and yes, those types of things make sense, particularly in a sentimental sense.

                But she had the third knife. Why not put it in the set and say, “Here, kid! Hope you stick with the career this time!”

                Maybe it’s just me, but if someone expressed need or interest in the incomplete set and I had multiple knives that performed the same function of the missing knife, I’d have pulled the utility knife out of the block and popped it back in the set case.

  34. longtimereader
    06/21/2010 at 5:48 PM

    “Finally, Lee pointed out the presence of hair and fatty tissue on the crime scene knife, things that would not be added if the blood had been dabbed on later from a towel.”

    I’ve always thought the prosecution was barking up the wrong tree on the knife issue. This comment from Lee, if true, seems to me to be a strong fact in favor of the knife on the scene being the knife that was used. Supported (admittedly from a biased witness) with production of the “other” knife. I’m not sure it matters though. Just seems like ultimately this issue has been a distraction for both sides in presenting their case.

    • Bea
      06/21/2010 at 5:53 PM

      What do you make of the fact that there was far less blood (if any) on the cutting edge? Hard for me to rectify that (and thank the Judge for her “so it’s an illustion?” question to get Lee to admit there was “less” on the cutting edge). I guess hair (which might have been picked up on Robert’s stomach) or fatty tissue doesn’t resonate as much with me – if I’m (chilling to think about) dipping a towel in a wound, wouldn’t I get some fatty tissue from the wound opening?

    • Carolina
      06/21/2010 at 5:55 PM

      Let me remind you that Wayne Williams was convicted mostly on fiber and hair transfer to his victims. There is no reason that hair and fat couldn’t be transferred from the body using the towel.

    • Hoya Loya
      06/21/2010 at 6:01 PM

      Good point LTR:

      Given Victor’s comment that the intruder “has one of our knives,” the knife’s location on the nightstand, Joe’s statement that he moved the knife, his comments to Tara and Hixson that he pulled the knife out of Robert, his comment to Tara about wiping up blood and the evidence/opinions that blood may have been smeared on the blade, does “Dylan’s knife” even matter?

      • longtimereader
        06/21/2010 at 6:39 PM

        I guess I can’t picture wiping fatty tissue onto the knife effectively without altering the stab wounds. But perhaps my opinion is more intuitive–just feels like that knife is the knife. Plus, I’ve never bought the logic of switching out knives as a clean-up strategy that makes any sense on the part of Joe & Co. Why get rid of one knife but then introduce another knife? But more to Hoya Loya’s point–without more from the prosecution on the “missing knife” its a who cares. There is more compelling evidence it seems to me regarding what Joe and Victor did/said/saw etc. about the knife at the crime scene.

        • Bill 2
          06/21/2010 at 6:46 PM

          “Why get rid of one knife but then introduce another knife?”

          Perhaps Plan A included removing the body to a location away from the house and getting rid of the weapon. If the cleanup had been done with blood-soaked towels, sheets, weapon, cameras, etc. gone — and suddenly Victor screamed, that could have caused a panic where they felt a knife was needed to be near the body that they were now going to place on the bed. When Victor told 911 that the intruder took one of their knives, he could have been thinking about a knife that went away in the cleanup.

          • longtimereader
            06/21/2010 at 6:59 PM

            Joe seems like a very sharp guy. Even if this is plan B, I can’t see how his brain reached the conclusion that an “intruder” would have left a knife behind such that he needed to create a dummy knife. Granted, I know thatit is very likely that Joe was not in his right mind, but that just seems like such an illogical conclusion for, by all accounts, a very good lawyer to come to.

            • AnnaZed
              06/21/2010 at 7:02 PM

              If there was a knife there the police would be less likely to scour every dumpster for the weapon, it’s right there. (maybe)

              • Bea
                06/21/2010 at 7:07 PM

                Too, if they wanted to sell a ‘burglary’ maybe burglars don’t come with knives. I’ve long figured that like the back gate door that the intruder didn’t use, Joe was trying to cover too much too quickly. His first thought was ‘get rid of the knife’ because of ALL the funky DNA it might have had on it if it was used in sex play AND then in a knee jerk move got a second knife.

                • longtimereader
                  06/21/2010 at 7:17 PM

                  good point on burglars don’t usually have knives. I may be giving Joe’s speedy coverup mind too much cred

              • New Alias
                06/21/2010 at 7:19 PM

                Going back to a comment a made weeks ago – the gist of which was that Joe was either incredibly dumb or incredibly smart and calculating —

                — placing a knife at the scene would absolutely throw the police off searching for the murder weapon, at least until the autopsy was completed. Very smart.

                — a random burglar decides to arm himself *after* he’s broken in? Who would believe that? Very dumb.

            • chilaw79
              06/21/2010 at 7:22 PM

              Since everyone else here puts in movie references, I assume this could be a variant of “Leave the gun, take the cannoli.”

      • Carolina
        06/21/2010 at 6:41 PM

        I think it might matter. First, it is far more likely to have produced the wounds in Robert’s chest than the one found. Secondly, having it missing makes the Trouple look suspicious. And having *two* show up with Diane– Really? It was so important that you had to keep it out of the set you were giving as a gift, but you already had one?

        I’m also ashamed of her, putting those knives in the dishwasher.

        • cinnamon
          06/21/2010 at 6:44 PM

          “I’m also ashamed of her, putting those knives in the dishwasher.”

          This made me laugh. I thought the same thing when I read that.

      • Leo
        06/21/2010 at 7:10 PM

        Hoya and LTR–I agree that the “missing” knife is a distraction. It is only one of numerous examples of Joe’s tampering with the scene. I’m inclined to believe Mrs. Ward and accept Dr. Fowler’s (and others’) testimony that the knife on the scene could have produced the stab wounds. Joe admitted moving (or removing) it, and wiping blood (to Tara Ragone), plus there is other evidence of his tampering. I think the prosecution had to pursue this angle, but I don’t believe it’s proved beyond reasonable doubt–or even preponderance of the evidence at this point.

    • Kate
      06/21/2010 at 6:19 PM

      Longtimereader – I’m with Bea and Carolina on this one. Fiber, hair and tissue do transfer and many cases have been won or lost with this issue at the fore.

      • cinnamon
        06/21/2010 at 6:31 PM

        Agree

      • tucsonwriter
        06/21/2010 at 6:32 PM

        I think its a matter of the knife being inconsistent with the actual stabbing. Since the prosecutors can’t prove murder based on the scene having been tampered with – cleaning etc. The one thing they can hope to prove is that Joe Price deliberately faked the knife evidence, which would clearly show that he tampered with the scene.

        Assuming the prosecution is right and a different knife, more consistent with the one that is missing was used, then that knife went out with all the other items that are missing.

        • tucsonwriter
          06/21/2010 at 6:40 PM

          Furthermore it sounds like Ward’s mom can’t really be sure of anything.

          • cinnamon
            06/21/2010 at 6:46 PM

            Agree. It seems to me that she wants to help her son by raising some doubt about the knife but doesn’t want to commit perjury by making a firm assertion.

        • AnnaZed
          06/21/2010 at 7:36 PM

          “…I think its a matter of the knife being inconsistent with the actual stabbing.”

          Exactly, I think this whole “Dylan’s knife in the box” thing might just be a distraction. A boning knife and a utility or paring knife are very very different animals. I think the cops might have gotten a little too excited about that knife box. Yet, I am convinced that the knife that killed Robert could not have been the knife in evidence, the boning knife. I fear that the prosecution has put up the wrong experts pointing out facts that aren’t really the point unless they were trying to convict Dylan of murder, which they aren’t (just yet).

          • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
            06/21/2010 at 8:49 PM

            Agree, AnnaZ.

  35. whodoneit
    06/21/2010 at 5:53 PM

    If so little blood got on the towel that Joe pressed to the fresh wound, then how can the explanation for the bloody back of the shirt be that it got bloody subsequently during movement and rescue efforts by EMT?

    • Bea
      06/21/2010 at 5:58 PM

      I suppose one could assume that EMTs moved his body enough to make him bleed more than lying still.

      It’s an odd thing to me that Joe didn’t try chest compressions since he’s an Eagle Scout. I realize that he claims to have had a pulse and breathing despite the fact the defense team says he died immediately but WHICH? If he wasn’t breathing and had no pulse, wouldn’t Joe try CPR? I would have and I’m no Eagle scout. And wouldn’t chest compressions “force” much more blood out? The defense will be walking a tight rope during closing to make all the evidence go their way. I’m sure Joe regrets his spinning of tall tales all night long – and forever thereafter to others. Hardly anything Ward or Zaborsky said is coming back to haunt them, at least as compared to Price.

      • Gary
        06/21/2010 at 6:12 PM

        First post.

        This is an incredible case and the community here is wonderful. Thnx much for all your work.

        How different would it have been if Victor had just said to 911 operator “COME QUICK TO THIS ADDRESS! COME QUICK! SOMEONE”S BEEN STABBED” and then Price DIDNT SAY ANYTHING TO COPS and just kept silent — do you think the chances of conviction would be substantially less?

        • Bea
          06/21/2010 at 6:28 PM

          Gary, absolutely. Joe in particular has provided a good deal of the most damning evidence – between his ‘talkiness’ and his ‘truthiness’ he’s been essential to the prosecution.

          • Gary
            06/21/2010 at 6:47 PM

            so you think that if 1. Victor had hung up the 911 call within 10 seconds and 2. at least price (maybe all of em) refused to talk to police — you think they would maybe have been no charges even filed?

            This whole things seems incredible.

            I’m sending around links saying “Bad news for defense when invisible intruder also has to be martial arts expert” 😀

      • Carolina
        06/21/2010 at 6:53 PM

        Would the EMTs have rolled over the body to check for additional wounds? If so, would they not have done it when he was first being treated, at 1509?

        Once he was on the gurney, wouldn’t they have kept him on his back and applied CPR? If that’s what case, wouldn’t there be nearly as much blood on the bed as on the shirt and gurney, assuming Joe tried any kind of life saving method, even compression on the wound?

        Wouldn’t the EMTs have mentioned blood loss in the ambulance?

        • Carolina
          06/21/2010 at 7:07 PM

          To follow up.

          If he didn’t bleed in the bed, where did the multiple reports of “so much blood everywhere” come from?

          If the initial emergency response was to stop the bleeding, wouldn’t the EMTs also take that precaution?

          If he didn’t bleed in the bed, how much and what kind of movement would have caused him to bleed on the gurney? Did they roll him over? Use manual compression? Shock him? what efforts did they use to keep him from losing blood, which would have been a concern? In other words, why were they unconcerned with the amount of blood the defense claims Robert lost in transport and initial treatment?

  36. gina
    06/21/2010 at 5:56 PM

    Has there been any discussion of whether this was a sexual molestation gone wrong? Have there been any former houseguests of the trouple who have come forward to say, hey I spent the night and woke up with junk in my trunk and weird needle marks on my neck? I guess we would have heard about any such interviews if they existed.

    • Bea
      06/21/2010 at 6:27 PM

      Hi Gina. There have been many such speculations – do a search of the site. Essentially the prosecution did not pursue this (evidence was a bit suspect) because it’s not a murder trial but one for conspiracy/tampering/obstruction.

      • gina
        06/21/2010 at 8:57 PM

        Of course-I keep forgetting this is not a murder trial. Thanks for setting me straight.

  37. Bea
    06/21/2010 at 6:09 PM

    Apologies for just expounding on a post I just made but it got me thinking. I know Joe claims to have checked for a pulse and breathing, and allegedly ‘found’ same as reported to the dispatcher by Victor, but that flies in the face of “near-instant death”.

    If Robert had no pulse and/or wasn’t breathing, why did Joe not try CPR? Dylan told detectives that he did not see Joe performing any life-saving measures.

    Compressions would have resulted in significantly more blood – it’s a manual act.

    Another thing I hope the prosecution puts in their closing – to follow EACH explanation by the defense of EACH damning fact ONLY RAISES more unanswerable questions such as these.

    • tucsonwriter
      06/21/2010 at 6:22 PM

      Reminds me of the South Park episode with the Chewbaca defense.

      This is amazingly lame in terms of a defense. Nothing in this accounts for anything that would change my mind about the intruder who cleaned, etc. They haven’t brought forward a single witness that can provide any insight into what puzzles everyone about the scene of the crime.

      The mother on the stand seems an act of desperation. Not to mention that it answers nothing but just poses more questions.

  38. Sean
    06/21/2010 at 6:29 PM

    The DiMaio cross –

    Michael will have a much more thorough update soon, but I thought it was effective. It ended up with the expert saying “I couldn’t say unless [insert extremely detailed test that was not performed]” or “Nobody could say” to almost every question. It seemed like he was attempting to make all of forensic science seem like a lot of guesswork at times.

    That, and evidently, the old saying “twist the knife” has no scientific validity. Apparently, according to DiMaio, a stab wound only hurts while it’s breaking the skin. He illustrated this with an example of a time he stuck a screwdriver in his hand and it didn’t hurt while he was jiggling it in his hand, only when it broke the skin.

    • Carolina
      06/21/2010 at 7:01 PM

      Did the prosecution ask DiMaio if he’d mind recreating his scientific results on the stand? I’d like to see them hand him a screwdriver.

      What he says is partly true, in that the skin has the most nerve endings, but saying it doesn’t hurt, well, there’s bullshit and then there’s real bullshit. I would guess the judge knows this kind on sight.

  39. Bill Orange
    06/21/2010 at 6:32 PM

    I confess to being a bit stunned by the defense strategy here. Not one, but TWO “expert witnesses” from the OJ trial, followed by one of the defendants’ mothers, who produces not one, but TWO copies of the missing knife. It almost seems like they’re DARING the judge to convict them. Maybe the demeanor of the witnesses makes them seem more credible than my impression from just reading about their testimony, but it sounds like it would be awfully hard for someone to sit through this without rolling their eyes. Joe Price is still facing a charge of evidence tampering, and they just put up an expert witness who’s been credibly accused of evidence tampering. WTF?

    • tucsonwriter
      06/21/2010 at 6:41 PM

      Crazy runs in packs?

    • mw
      06/21/2010 at 6:53 PM

      I didn’t see it – but did this (or could this have) come up on cross?

      Lee is a world-class greedy nutjob. I would think that would be fair game on cross, to attack credibility, but I don’t see that in the recaps.

      • Former Criminal Sex Offense Prosecutor
        06/21/2010 at 7:24 PM

        They haven’t had time to put up every detail. From the local ABC website, “Under cross-examination, Lee admitted he is being paid between $10,000 and $20,000 to appear as a witness for the defense.”

        I feel confident that the cross of Dr. Lee was both withering & extensive & if the prosecutors missed anything, the Judge jumped right on it.

  40. Craig
    06/21/2010 at 7:43 PM

    The wrap post will be up soon. A lot to cover and better thorough than fast.

  41. Bob
    06/21/2010 at 8:04 PM

    If I view the Moultrie Courthouse marker with the wrong glasses (driving glasses at close range or computer/reading glasses from a distance) and can’t read the writing on the marker, it looks like it could be a gravestone, with flowers. Is this blog an alternate monument to Robert Wone, with our comments as the flowers on his grave?

  42. Bea
    06/21/2010 at 8:06 PM

    Legal Times is reporting that there will be one more defense witness, and that the prosecution plans on calling 2-3 rebuttal witnesses. FYI.

  43. susan
    06/21/2010 at 8:13 PM

    Re the knife, even if it was the exact same model and proven to be from the same set, what’s to say she had it in her possession at the time of the murder? When did she turn it over to police? When did that alibi arise, I wonder? It’s possible it was sent back to Washington to prove the alibi. Anything is possible really.

    • Turtlejay
      06/21/2010 at 8:58 PM

      I think it would be relevant to murder charges to show that “Dylan’s knife” = the weapon. But because of the nature of the charges in this case, it seems only that one would have to show that the knife by the bed does NOT = the murder knife. (Certain parts of Dr. Fowler’s testimony ring in my ears . . . I remember him saying that – having autopsied 3000 or so knife deaths – that there was bruising on Robert around the wound suggesting the hilt of the knife had hit the skin. If we accept that the knife by the bed was longer than the wounds, the hilt would not have hit (I keep wondering anyway how someone could stab with sufficient force to go through two layers of sternum (again Dr. Fowler) but then stop each time before the knife created a wound as long as the knife)).

      Anyway, again, I think the Judge will not get hung up on Dylan’s mom’s testimony – see especially her colloquy with the female AUSA last week (sorry don’t recall her name) – about mothers testifying on behalf of sons (“oh my son is too sweet to ever get mixed up in trouble) AND because the charges in front of her don’t even require her to discredit Mrs. Ward. Again, the prosecution does not need to prove the murder weapon; it needs to concentrate on the knife by the bed not being the murder weapon.

    • chilaw79
      06/21/2010 at 9:25 PM

      As I understand the testimony, Mrs. Ward did not testify that she sent the knife(s) to the police. She said she sent them to the attorney after Dylan was arrested (in the obstruction of justice case). I assume she means the defense attorney and not the prosecutor.

      I am not sure if that means she did not look for them until then or
      did not provide the knife to the attorney until then.

      I assume that was one of the reasons for the “if the knife does not fit, you must acquit” testimony earlier.

  44. Michael
    06/21/2010 at 8:19 PM

    So is the defense using Dr. Lee’s hocus pucus (just because I say so it is true) theories planting some idea that Mrs. Wone hired a martial artist assassin to 86 her husband?

    • Carolina
      06/21/2010 at 8:45 PM

      Nah, Kim Jong-Il was after him for taking that RFA job. (Hey, it makes as much sense.)

  45. Michael
    06/21/2010 at 8:22 PM

    …and what about the neighbor’s babysitter talking about the crushed turtle sandbox cover? Weak tea defense witnesses. Grabbing at straws?

    • Carolina
      06/21/2010 at 8:46 PM

      The silent, deadly ninja cannot be expected to anticipate a plastic turtle!

  46. YournormalJoe
    06/21/2010 at 8:23 PM

    I don’t understand how Dylans mother can just produce a knife on the witness stand. Did the prosecuters know she was going to just produce knives and say, “here it is” (basically).
    All this time the search has been on for the knife to the cutlery set and Dylan nor his mother spoke up and said it’s at Mom’s house.

    Mom should be ashamed of herself.

    • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
      06/21/2010 at 8:33 PM

      Proving the knife in the gustroom WAS the knife used would be more useful to the defense in the conspiracy trial.

      Proving the knife in the guestroom WAS NOT the knife used would be more useful to the prosecution in the conspiracy trial.

      Why is anyone wasting their time on the cutlery set at this point? Seems that would be more pertinent to the murder trial. In any event, I think the prosecution narrowed their case too much insisting that Dylan’s knife was used. Why didn’t they say a smaller knife was used to inflict the wounds, and the knife at the scene was too long.

      • Carolina
        06/21/2010 at 8:49 PM

        Someone said earlier that there had been speculation that an arrest was in the works before the break in, and that Dylan’s warrant sounded more like it was for murder, not tampering, obstruction and conspiracy.

        I wonder if they fixation on the knife is a holdover from that?

    • YournormalJoe
      06/21/2010 at 8:52 PM

      If I had of only read comments above I would have had my questions answered. My fault, lesson learned.
      Cancel.

  47. Tarfunk
    06/21/2010 at 8:26 PM

    I’m an American popular song junkie (if the stereotype fits…) and all I could think about today watching the defense put on its case was that wonderful Peggy Lee song, “Is that all there is?”

    I never watched any of the OJ trial, so I never saw Henry Lee testify before. I must say he does not make a good first impression. I know I come to this case having read lots of background material which predisposes me to certain opinions, but Henry Lee came off as completely bought and paid for. To be (in)exact, bought and paid for to the tune of $10-20K, paid–as Dr. Lee was eager to point out–to his forensic institute, not to him. (Kirschner didn’t ask about any difference that might make.)

    As a total non-expert, the testimony that seemed most dubious to me was Lee’s claim that the three striation marks found on the bloody knife were consistent with three successive stabbings but not with having been applied by swiping the towel with blood. When Kirschner asked whether the marks on the knife would be consistent with the stains, Lee’s response was “That’s your hypothetical.” He then lectured Kirschner about having a theory before experimentation. To which Kirschner produced a copy of lecture notes from Dr. Lee which pointed out that crime scene reconstruction involves conjecture and hypothesis after data collection. Just before this interchange, Lee pointed out that fibers from the t-shirt (as opposed to the towel) might have caused the stain patterns on the knife. Judge Liebovitz jumped into ask why the pattern would be consistent with the t-shirt and not the towel. Lee’s response was that experiments with the towel showed no dots like those found on the knife. There was no further explanation of just why the t-shirt would be any different.

    There was clearly a difference in the amount of blood along the spine of the knife rather than on the cutting edge. This is what elicited Judge Liebovitz’s question about this being an illusion. (She actually asked whether this was an “optical illusion.”) More blood on the spine might be indicative of wiping the spine against the towel, and I guess Dr. Lee knew this. He would not concede, however, that wiping the sharp edge of a knife might have been more dangerous to the wiper than wiping the spine. They paid an expert for this?

    Dr. Vincent Di Maio was a stronger, more believable witness than Dr. Lee (until he got to the screwdriver-through-hand thing), but again I’m not sure how much he was able to contribute to reasonable doubt. His major points were (1) not every stabbing results in a defensive wound, (2) three virtually identical stab wounds may simply mean that the killer stabbed the victim three times in very rapid succession, perhaps taking less than 1 second, and (3) no one can say for sure whether the knife found at the scene or the “missing” knife caused the wounds, since either would be consistent. Arguing that Wone may not have responded to the stabs, however, he pointed out that he had once had a screwdriver completely penetrate his palm without feeling any pain. (One now understands why Mel Gibson didn’t consult him before filming “The Passion.”)

    Contrary to reports of Diane Ward “crying” on the stand, I did not see that. She was visibly shaken, and her voice was cracking, but she did not cry. (Judge Liebovitz even offered her a box of kleenex, which she never used.) Mrs. Ward bought the knife set in question in Germany while her husband was stationed there in the military. She mailed the set as a gift to Mr. Ward’s mother and stepfather. After the death of the stepfather and then the mother, Mr. Ward’s sister returned any gifts given to their mother back to the giver. That is how the set wound up again in the possession of the Wards. Diane Ward reported that she had a carving knife and fork already, so may have kept the smaller knife,which would have fit into an empty slot in her knife block. She could not say definitively, however, whether the knife was missing when she received the set back after the mother’s death, only that she knows it was missing when she gave it to Dylan.

    The final defense witness was Glenda L. King, a housekeeper and babysitter who was present at 1511 Swann St until about 2:30pm on August 2, 2006. She testified that a sandbox in the back yard with a flexible rubber cover appear crushed in when she returned to the house on August 3. She reported the situation to the police gathered outside 1509 that morning. The sandbox was a few inches from the fence bordering the 1509 property, but Kirschner on cross was able to elicit that the entire height of the sandbox was less than 1-1/2 feet to begin with, and in addition, a chair and a trashcan next to the sandbox were actually higher than the sandbox. The whole point of this testimony didn’t make much sense to me. They seemed to be trying to establish that someone could have stepped on the sandbox to get over the fence, but the witness also stated that she was sure the gate to the back yard was also locked. (Jumping over 1511 to get to 1509 would therefore probably have meant scaling two fences. I hope the prosecution point this out in the wrap-up.)

    Joe, Dylan, and Victor appeared very much as other visitors have described: Dylan and Victor sit close together, seem to interact some, and pay close attention to what’s going on–including paying close attention to exhibits. Joe sits away from the others with the exhibition screen behind him. He seemed to be staring blindly ahead much of the time I looked at him, and he was visibly bouncing up and down from shaking his foot so hard.

    I guess what struck me most today was the empathy I felt for the families. The Zyborskys and Dylan’s father were in the courtroom all day, and sat together. Mrs. Ward was present only starting with her testimony in the afternoon. Seeing Mr. Ward grab and hold her hand when she came down from the stand was very moving. It is so obvious this is incredibly difficult on all of them.

    And of course, I couldn’t begin to imagine what Robert’s family was feeling as a blown-up photograph of Robert on the autopsy table was shown again and again. To me, it looked only like a dead body on a sterile stainless steel gurney, but it was surely more than that to them. At one point, when an attorney was done with the poster, he left it leaning against the witness stand facing the audience. A prosecution aide quickly ran up and turned it around so it couldn’t be viewed. Way too late, I thought.

    • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
      06/21/2010 at 8:43 PM

      Fantastic summary, Tarfunk. Thank you so much.

      First thing that jumps out at me, is: “(2) three virtually identical stab wounds may simply mean that the killer stabbed the victim three times in very rapid succession, perhaps taking less than 1 second”

      It’s been said that the wound to Robert’s sternum would have taken considerable force. someone would have had to push with greater force to accomplish this wound.

    • Carolina
      06/21/2010 at 9:03 PM

      Thank you for that. Mrs. Ward’s testimony makes more sense now.

      I wonder if Dr. Ward is the genesis of the tamponade theory. It would seem reasonable.

    • Nelly
      06/21/2010 at 9:12 PM

      Tarfunk, thank you for your detailed summary.

    • curiousdc
      06/21/2010 at 9:17 PM

      No empathy here for the Ward or Zaborsky families—they’re delusional and completely in denial. They should be ashamed and mortified, having spawned these twisted ghouls. The only sympathetic characters in this twisted story are the members of the Wone family and Robert himself.

  48. Ex Swann
    06/21/2010 at 9:01 PM

    The ME testified that she couldn’t exclude the knife beside the bed as being the murder weapon. Much earlier in the investigation she wrote that she believed the weapon was somewhat shorter than the one found.

    I actually believe that Robert was incapacitated with drugs and possibly restraints. I believe that on one or more occasions, while being sexually assaulted, Robert began to regain consciousness. I think Joe panicked, grabbed the knife from the kitchen and stabbed Robert in order to save his career and his lifestyle.

    I believe Joe removed the knife from Robert’s chest in order to explain why his (Joe’s) DNA was on the murder weapon.

Comments are closed.