1509 for $1.59

07/19/2010
By Craig

1509 Swann: Back On The Market

Thanks to a tipster, we learned that for the second time since Robert’s murder, 1509 Swann Street NW is up for sale; this time for just short of $1.6 million.  The listing is three days old, fresh on the market with no open house scheduled yet.

1509 Swann Street Guestroom

LUXURY AT IT’S BEST.  4BR 3.5BA TOWN HOME ON PRETTY SWANN ST IN VIBRANT DUPONT.  ORIGINALLY BUILT IN 1886 THIS PROPERTY HAS BEEN BEAUTIFULLY RENOVATED WITH TOP-OF-THE-LINE AMENITIES THROUGHOUT.  FROM THE ROOF DECK WITH CITY VIEWS TO THE NEW LOWER LEVEL IN-LAW SUITE WITH SEP ENTRANCE.  NO DETAIL HAS BEEN OVERLOOKED IN FIVE FLRS OF ELEGANT LIVING. PLUS PATIO AND GATED PARKING FOR TWO CARS.

Bought for $1,276,000 million in 2005 by Joe Price and Victor Zaborsky, they unloaded it in June 2008, for $1,475,000.  Their tidy profit was probably eaten up by the extensive repair work required after the house was literally torn apart by MPD and FBI evidence technicians in the wake of Robert’s murder.

Evidence.  A lot of good that did.

The seemingly endless string of coincidences associated with 1509 don’t end with the night of Robert’s murder.  In a peculiar twist, the listing agent who sold the home to Price and Zaborsky, also had another sale that was associated with a murder.  Two, in fact.

In 2003, realtor Therese Cox sold D.C. school principal Brian Betts a home in Silver Spring, Maryland.  Betts was found shot to death in the home this past April 15.  Betts allegedly hooked up with his assailants by way of a phone-sex chat line.

The previous year, on August 6, 2002, Anthony Kelly, of Washington, shot and killed George Russell and his daughter Erika Smith in the same home.  From the April 21 edition of the Maryland Gazette:

“Cox also has the unwanted distinction of selling another of the District’s most infamous homes.  In April 2005, she sold a Dupont Circle home on Swann Street to Joseph Price and Victor Zaborsky. On Aug. 2, 2006, Robert Wone, who was visiting his friends Price and Zaborsky and staying at the home, was stabbed to death in a bizarre, gruesome killing.

That high-profile case was well-known when Cox again attempted to sell the house after the three men moved out in 2008, but she sold it anyway, for nearly $1.5 million, $200,000 more than she had sold it for to Price and Zaborsky, according to public records.”

Cox, who does not have the listing this time for 1509 Swann, also told the Gazette that Betts was unsettled to learn his new home had been the scene of a murder:

“When we went to settle, and he (Betts) moved in the next day, a neighbor came over and told him (about the murder of Smith and his daughter),” said Cox, who says realtors are not required to disclose past history about a house prior to a sale unless a prospective buyer asks. “He called me in hysterics and said he couldn’t live there, it was horrible.”

To appease Betts, Cox, who says she is very religious, enlisted two ministers to perform an exorcism on the home.”

Exorcism.  A lot of good that did.

Note: Wone case observers will recognize Keith Alexander’s byline in the Bett’s story, as well as that of his colleague and wmrw pal, Neely Tucker, who chronicled the Kelly case and trial for the Post.

-posted by Craig

The flyer for 1509 Swann:

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141 Responses to “ 1509 for $1.59 ”

  1. Bill Orange on 07/19/2010 at 10:43 AM

    Wow. What’s the market in DC like? I realize that’s a fairly nice and in-demand area, but the real-estate market has tanked just about everywhere, so I’m having a hard time seeing this place being bought for 100K more than what it sold for two years ago. Especially when the first google hit for “1509 Swann St” is “Murder in DuPont”.

    • Craig on 07/19/2010 at 10:58 AM

      BillO: The market is humming along nicely, for some. In the Politico this morning, “Reality Gap: U.S. Struggles, D.C. Booms.”

      • NYer on 07/19/2010 at 12:53 PM

        Thanks Craig- this article seems to argue what I had suggested below (before you posted it)- that the robust high-end DC market may be dominated in its makeup by politicians and the like, who are less affected by the econ crisis.

    • Boltz30000 on 07/19/2010 at 8:26 PM

      The residential real estate market in the Swann St neighborhood has been boosted also by the remarkable revitalization of the nearby 14th and U Street commercial areas. It has become quite trendy, especially in just the past couple of years. At the time of the murder, 14th St (less than 2 blocks from 1509 Swann) was considered dangerous. Now it seems that a new over-priced restaurant is opening every week. Also, the house boasts off-street parking and a rental unit, 2 highly-prized amenities in this neighborhood.

      • Clio on 07/19/2010 at 9:54 PM

        So, Sarah’s concerns about neighborhood safety would have dissipated naturally, if only Robert had stayed with Lisa that night.

        Yet, do ninjas and gentrification go hand in hand? The more “revitalization”, the greater the chance of a home invasion?

    • former crackho on 07/20/2010 at 10:03 AM

      If you happen to cross the bridge into Alexandria or Arlington, VA you may not be as lucky….my condo has depreciated about 100K in the past two years, but that is done from an extremely over-inflated price.

      • former crackho on 07/20/2010 at 10:04 AM

        ooops..meant “that is down” not done

    • Mark on 05/01/2011 at 9:51 PM

      The realtors today said that they are under no obligation to inform the new buyser about robert.

      • Craig on 05/02/2011 at 11:20 AM

        1509 is on the market again and there was a Sunday open house. Some thoughts on the walk-thru to come later today or Tuesday.

        • David on 05/02/2011 at 1:45 PM

          Mark–

          You are correct — they are under no obligation to disclose, especially since they are not the owners when the murder occurred. But, I do believe it would be in their best interest to disclose because not only is the home the site where a violent crime occurred, but also because the address is constantly mentioned on a website that details that violent crime.

          David

          • Nelly on 05/02/2011 at 10:32 PM

            Has anyone actually been living in there since Joe et al. moved out? I thought the last buyer was another realtor or a company– not someone who bought 1509 Swann St. to live in.

            • David on 05/03/2011 at 10:03 AM

              Nelly —

              Yes, it looks like people are living there, and one of the owners who is living there is a real estate agent. So you information is partially correct.

              David

  2. NYer on 07/19/2010 at 10:57 AM

    Good point BillO. Although conventional wisdom seems to dictate that affluent areas (which 1509 presumably is considered)are more likely to retain their values, as a casual observer of the NY real estate market, I noticed that even in affluent NY areas there’s been a steady decline of housing prices. I find the increasing value of 1509 unusual. Perhaps it can be attributed to the fact that most of the high-end buyers in the DC area are less affected by the recession (e.g., politcians et al…)?

    • CDinDC (Boycott BP) on 07/19/2010 at 11:01 AM

      DC is one of the few areas in the country that has increasing real estate values.

    • chilaw79 on 07/19/2010 at 11:38 AM

      DC is one of the few American cities actually gaining population. Urban living (and the hassles of commuting) make areas like DuPont Circle and other DC neighborhoods more desirable.

      • Grrr on 07/19/2010 at 11:34 PM

        Nice. I confess that I currently exist in Dallas. We are building hotels, bridges, new shopping areas, expanding our light rail system, with great employment, our arts district is building, building, building, etc. Our property values are not really going up, because they never really went down.

        The cost of this? In the (paraphrased words of my beloved Molly Ivins), “Thank God for Mississippi or we’d be dead last,” in caring for the poor, the elderly, sick & dying children, the hungry, the mentally ill, etc.

        Dallas, however, is an astonishly liberal city, however. Our last Mayor, Laura Miller, was a New England Jewish liberal that was the Grand Marshall of several gay pride parades. The current mayor, sad to say, is a reptile (or is he an insect? I haven’t decided). But he spends, spends, spends!

        I do a lot of bidness in DC & I think DC folks try too hard. DC is a hicksville southern city on LA/NY training wheels. Grrr

        • Grrr on 07/20/2010 at 12:00 AM

          however

        • Jeana on 07/20/2010 at 8:30 AM

          Grrr – I’ve never been to Dallas and it’s been years since I lived in DC, so I won’t comment on your comparison of the urban amenities – but Mollie Ivins is my beloved, too!

        • Carol on 07/20/2010 at 10:23 AM

          Methinks you have a chip on your shoulder. Most people in DC love it — it’s a great city.

          • Grrr on 07/20/2010 at 5:44 PM

            Youthinks correctly. It’s an okay city, but it’s just so small.

          • Grrr on 07/20/2010 at 8:40 PM

            Okay, since the subject of a real estate sale is off-topic, in a way, I will expound on my DC experiences as a Dallasite (who grew up in Florida, another shithole).

            It is a known fact that I hold the world record for being at three JR’s bars within five days. While preparing to go to GalVESTon, I was at the JR’s in Dallas getting drunk preparing to to go to my friends’ deplorable beach house for more drinking & relaxation. JR’s #1. We retired to an unknown Hummer with a oddly pale Philipino driver. My friend, “Large Toniesha,” or big Tony, or Fat Tony, or whatever, directed the driver to pull into Houston for a quick drink at JR’s. JR’s #2. We make it to GalVESTon & eventually collapse quite early in the morning.

            Two wonderful days of bbq ing & drinking where curtailed when “Bobby,” a congressional aide from my area suggested that I to get to DC soon in order to meet with his Republican boss to discuss biz where a common bill was the for us both purview in the north Texas area.

            I bought a suit in Houston & went to DC. Thank God for Jos A. Banks, that had me fitted & out in two hours. Only $300.00!

            I checked into the Marriot on Penn and went down to that ghastly bar. They weren’t really bartenders but merely people serving drinks. I looked at them & realized I couldn’t get a great Sapphire martini Why is that bar area so small? Anyway, after arguing, ahem, talking with a drunk Army Major, I took the escalator up to get a Taxi. (What is up with the odd elevators there anyway? Big buttons, where the hell are we going).

            So, I brought extra cash with me because I thought going to JR’s would be on the other side of the earth. In Texas, everything is usually a twenty minute ride. I could have walked to the damned place. So I arrive at JR’s (#3). See, I broke a record. It’s a known fact. Confirmed by the scientific community!

            Really clean.

            I got my bill sponsored the next day.

            Okay, neighborhood sleuths. What N. Texas congressman has a tall, skinny, gay, blonde, beautiful, hot, unkempt and overworked aide named, “Bobby?”

            • Clio on 07/20/2010 at 9:34 PM

              It isn’t Joe “I love BP” Barton, is it?

              When I was young(er), I did make the Eagle a primary stop on my tours of the capital. And, that gets me to wonder why our boys preferred “precious” Halo over the more “gritty” Eagle — was it class bias (“Mercedes, Mercedes, Mercedes!”) or geographic convenience?

              Thank Hera, though, I never cared for JRs!

              • Grrr on 07/20/2010 at 10:05 PM

                nope

                • AnnaZed on 07/20/2010 at 10:13 PM

                  Peter Sessions?

                  • Grrr on 07/20/2010 at 10:29 PM

                    ding ding ding ding

                    • Grrr on 07/20/2010 at 10:30 PM

                      See, the town IS too small.

                    • AnnaZed on 07/20/2010 at 10:32 PM

                      I don’t live in DC, but I was born in Dallas if that helps.

        • CDinDC (Boycott BP) on 07/20/2010 at 9:00 PM

          Grrr says: “DC is a hicksville southern city on LA/NY training wheels”

          And this comes from someone that made JRs a primary stop while in a city of one of a kind cultural and historical sights!

          I’m laughing out loud!

          • Grrr on 07/20/2010 at 9:12 PM

            Oh, please, I stopped at many other places as well. But I’ll take historical. Flattery gets you everywhere.

            • CDinDC (Boycott BP) on 07/20/2010 at 9:19 PM

              Okay. I’ll cut you some slack, Grrr. LOL

              I have to say I like the fact that it’s smaller. It’s more intimate. It’s livable. I’m a life-long Washingtonian and I can’t imagine living anywhere else. Madrid and Montreal are the closest I’ve come to the feeling of DC.

              • Grrr on 07/20/2010 at 10:09 PM

                Ya, I get that. But that is what Maine is for. Day to day, no way.

                • CDinDC (Boycott BP) on 07/20/2010 at 10:31 PM

                  ROFL! Well, I wouldn’t go THAT far. But that’s okay. I don’t care for your hometown either.

  3. NYer on 07/19/2010 at 11:10 AM

    To the lawyers here- a Property/sovereign immunity/constitutional law hypo/question here (will sound familiar):

    A crime occurs on homeowners P and Z property in DC. P and Z are suspects in crime. In the subsequent investigation, the DC forensics and police team tear down walls, piping, dismantle fixtures, generally take the home apart. P and Z later sell their property at a loss, after having to make numerous repairs to the home following the MPD’s investigation and search of the property. P and Z are later acquitted of charges related to said crime. P and Z file suit in DC court against MPD, seeking compensation/damages for home repairs made in investigation of charges which they were exonerated. Do they have a case?

    • David on 07/19/2010 at 12:01 PM

      NYer,

      With a murder investigation still “open and active” I would think that it would be difficult for the defendants to seek compenstation/damages to their previous home.

      David, co-ed.

      • NYer on 07/19/2010 at 12:35 PM

        Interesting thought, David. But as a practical matter, none of them have been charged in this “open” murder investigation. So, as a de facto reality, this criminal case arguably is now behind them. The question then becomes what are their rights as exonerated property owners who have suffered financial losses arising from a search/seizure conducted legally with a warrant? Can P and Z be compensated under the takings clause of the US Constitution? Or can DC police claim sovereign immunity in this case?

        • AnnaZed on 07/20/2010 at 10:58 AM

          “…So, as a de facto reality, this criminal case arguably is now behind them.”

          Au contraire, there is some likelihood that it has only just begun.

          • NYer on 07/20/2010 at 12:08 PM

            Not sure what you are referring to AZ, but personally, I’ll believe it when someone is charged for murder, or even brought in for questioning, neither of which has happened since 2006, to my knowledge.

    • Bill Orange on 07/19/2010 at 12:47 PM

      I’ll leave it to the lawyers to say yes or no, but I’d have a hard time imagining them winning such a case after the judge’s written ruling was read to a jury. I think that they’re going to be able to keep the written ruling out of any lawsuit in which they’re the defendants (assuming, of course, that they’re also willing to out the actual “not guilty” verdicts), but not in a lawsuit in which they’re the plaintiffs.

      It’s an interesting situation to me, because from a legal standpoint, I thought that the trio’s next move would be to appeal the verdicts if they were found guilty or to start filing civil suits if they were found not guilty. The judge’s written ruling left them with neither of those options being particularly viable.

      • NYer on 07/19/2010 at 1:03 PM

        All good points and food for thought BillO, thanks. Interested to hear what civil practitioners on this blog think as well.

    • chilaw79 on 07/19/2010 at 12:55 PM

      Probably not, assuming that the collection of evidence was done pursuant to a search warrant authorized by a judge who determined there was reasonable cause to believe a crime had been committed at the location (and, more particularly, where the crime may have been committed by the property owners or facilitated by their negligence in leaving a door open and the alarm unarmed).

      In any event, a claim against the government would need to have been filed within a short period of time following the injury.

      This also would assume that the claim would not have been covered by any insurance policy held by the home owners.

    • Cat in Cleveland on 07/19/2010 at 1:37 PM

      The law varies by jurisdiction, but in general (and subject to several “except when”)when law enforcement officers do what is necessary to execute a valid search warrant, the officers and government are immune from suit for damages caused by the execution of the warrant, as long as the officers act reasonably in carrying out the warrant. If they exceed their authority or intentionally damage property unnecessarily, there may be some liability. Most of the time, the property owner (whether involved in the crime or not) bears the cost. I don’t know if its covered by insurance,however.

      • NYer on 07/19/2010 at 1:45 PM

        Thanks Cat. And I would imagine that this particular warrant was probably broadly drafted, which would make sense in a murder investigation such as this.

  4. NYer on 07/19/2010 at 1:13 PM

    Thanks C79. Didn’t think about the statute-of-limitations angle you raised. In NY City, a plaintiff has a 90-day period to file Notice of Claim, but while I know that this applies to personal injury, and I wasn’t sure about property damage claims- much less what the DC laws are.

    • chilaw79 on 07/20/2010 at 10:59 AM

      A six-month claims period filing requirement applies to both personal and property claims brought against the D. C. city government.

  5. CuriousinVA on 07/19/2010 at 1:16 PM

    In reviewing the newest virtual tour it seemed odd to see one of the room’s converted to a child’s bedroom. I wasn’t sure if that was Dylan’s old room? I’m thinking yes and that the room with the built-in bookshelves was the office/slash guestroom?

    Other than the location this house really is nothing special at all.

  6. Cat in Cleveland on 07/19/2010 at 1:43 PM

    Does anyone know when the police searched the basement apartment where the tenant lived? As landlords, Joe and Victor certainly had a key. Since it was a separate apartment with a separate entrance, the police would have needed a separate warrant to search it. Was it secured through the time it was searched, or did anyone have any opportunity to remove anything from it?

    Are the search warrants available anywhere? Thanks.

    • NYer on 07/19/2010 at 1:55 PM

      Cat-
      I can’t answer that specifically, but recall that MPD searched the lint filter in the dryer. Not sure if the said appliance is within Morgan’s apartment or the “curtilage” of her living quarters.
      It would be interesting from a drafting point of view to see the warrants. I imagine there would likely be a second one for Morgan, and that both warrants incorporate the Affidavit for the Arrest Warrant for Dylan Ward.

      • Craig on 07/19/2010 at 2:30 PM

        Nyer & Cat: The search warrant affidavits are still on the legal docs page, third item from the top.

        • Cat in Cleveland on 07/19/2010 at 3:21 PM

          Thanks, Craig. Based on the warrants, it seems that a lot of evidence that was excluded!

          It appears that the original warrant, execute the night of the murder, did not specifically include the basement apartment. The basement apartment was searched several days later, after forensics determined that there was trace evidence of blood leading from the body out into the hall, on the stairs, in the kitchen and on the doorframe to the basement apartment. With resources being what they are, I assume the house was not secured that whole time? Whatever was there could have been removed after the murder and before the basement was searched. Does anyone know what happeded to Michael’s partner’s diary?

          • AnnaZed on 07/20/2010 at 12:20 PM

            Good points all.

      • AnnaZed on 07/20/2010 at 11:06 AM

        The washer and dryer were located in the bathroom next to Dylan Ward’s room on the second floor:

        http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/graphic/2009/06/01/GR2009060101137.html?sid=ST2009053102566

        • NYer on 07/20/2010 at 12:12 PM

          Thanks AZ. Since I learned that blood evidence was recovered in the dryer, this whole time in my mind I kept imagining the alleged cleanup process to involve a lot of running up and downstairs. I now see this would nothave been the case.

    • carolina on 07/19/2010 at 7:14 PM

      It was searched under a separate warrant.

  7. Rick on 07/19/2010 at 2:15 PM

    It would take a lot more than 2 ministers performing an exorcism at 1509 before I would move in…Just thinking about all the “stuff” that went on inside the walls of that home give me the creeps.

  8. Dr20854 on 07/19/2010 at 2:19 PM

    I believe that “child’s room” belongs to the current owner’s daughter. I also noticed that according to the public record, the house was not purchased by Price and Zaborsky in 2005 together, but rather individually by Victor Zaborsky. They had already had children together by 2001, so it’s interesting that they would not even buy property together.

    • Hoya Loya on 07/19/2010 at 2:21 PM

      Many lawyers do not take title to their homes for professional liability reasons — the spouse often takes title alone.

      • Bill Orange on 07/19/2010 at 5:39 PM

        This is common with doctors, too.

        • Dr20854 on 07/20/2010 at 10:16 AM

          I know lots of doctors, lawyers, and gay couples. Not one of my gay friends (doctor, lawyer or any professional) would dare leave their name off the title of the home if they are committed and equal partners. They may put it in trust or another legal entity, but not one individual over another. There is too much at stake to lose if something happens to the other. Wills are not enough to protect the other partner and the laws on same-sex marriages or unions are different everywhere and constantly changing.

          Who knows the reason why, but I thought it was very unusual given that Price and Zaborsky were allegedly in a “committed” relationship. But then again, what did that really mean?

          • Rich on 07/20/2010 at 11:38 AM

            Ditto!
            I was in Gawd Awful litigation with my Ex when my current partner of over 6 years and I bought a home.

            I was concerned that the Ex may be successful in attaching my assets as he claimed poverty and placed everything in a trust.

            However, with our home, my name went on the title.

            I too, was concerned bout the, “What Ifs?” Naturally, I could have placed it in the Trust, but, I didn’t want to alert him to the fact, that there was a trust if he went looking.

            We’re fine and the Ex is out of the picture.

  9. Stan on 07/19/2010 at 2:34 PM

    This “article” was both in poor taste and needlessly sensational. I know you guys don’t have much new to write about for a while, but this is just ridiculous. Therese is not only a dear friend but has been our Realtor for years. I’m insulted for her.

    Your credibility with me has taken yet another hit. You may lose a “customer” if this kind of Bravo TV-esque faux drama is the future of your website.

    How about you stick to the facts, and stop making stuff up?

    • Doug on 07/19/2010 at 3:32 PM

      Stan: We certainly don’t want to lose anyone. But what, exactly, is made up here?
      -Doug, co-editor

    • chilaw79 on 07/19/2010 at 4:52 PM

      Stan,

      While your loyalty to your friend is admirable, the editors did not make anything up. In fact, all of the information regarding Therese Cox had appeared in other news publications, including the Gazette and the Los Angeles Times. Ms. Cox apparently participated in the articles and provided extensive quotes to these publications.

      • Susan on 07/19/2010 at 7:28 PM

        Stan,

        I wanted to add that one of the beauties of this blog/website is that there are no “customers.”

        All the editors did was report the facts. Your friend sold the homes, participated in the media interview and ordered the exorcism. Clearly she has a broader sales history than just those two homes.

    • AnnaZed on 07/20/2010 at 12:28 PM

      Oh piffle, I detect no misrepresentations of fact in this piece.

      As to your friend, I am sure that she is an exemplary Realtor. Still, I am not sure what function such a person would occupy in one’s life over the course of “years” unless one was oneself a real estate professional. If this last is the case then I would speculate that you are taking umbrage on behalf of all real estate professionals as a class over the mere idea that the unseemly past of any item of real estate might be brought more to the fore in the public discourse during the delicate phases of a real estate transaction, to which I would say that if one finds the heat in the kitchen oppressive one might best consider seeking employment elsewhere.

  10. Rhett_Butler on 07/19/2010 at 6:20 PM

    Question: Do we know with any certainty what time Robert Wone left the Radio Free Asia offices and were there any witnesses (other than the defendants) who provided independent evidence as to the exact time Robert actually arrived at 1509 Swann Street? Did he go directly from RFA to the defendants’ home, or did he make a stop along the way? The timeline has always been problematic for me and I was wondering if it were possible that perhaps he arrived prior to the estimated time of 10:30 p.m. I read an earlier post that suggested that the arrival time was undisputed, and that Robert took a cab from RFA to 1509. But was that ever verified independently?

    • Hoya Loya on 07/19/2010 at 6:43 PM

      I believe there is a phone record of Robert’s call from his office to Joe at about 10:24 saying he was on his way so if anything he arrived a bit later than 10:30.

      • Robert H on 07/19/2010 at 8:19 PM

        So it’s likely that Robert arrived later than 10:30? And I believe the “household” all had water together in the kitchen after he arrived? And Robert also contacted his wife before going to bed? So where does this leave the possible time line? I want to say the butler did it in the pantry with the candlestick. But seriously, you might know this, is there any other case ever in the United States like this one? Even remotely? And if there is not, isn’t any judge at a disadvantage without case law to refer to? I’m not an attorney but I thought decisions from previous cases were essential.

        • carolina on 07/19/2010 at 9:58 PM

          Robert contacted Kathy before he left for JP’s. There were additional composed drafts of emails, but they supposedly were never sent. Why the prosecution stipulated that they were is beyond anyone’s guess.

          • Rhett_Butler on 07/20/2010 at 9:28 AM

            I thought that i had read once that there was speculation that the unsent emails may have been written by the defendants as a cover to provide a shortened time line. I wonder if a forensic handwriting analysis was ever done of the unsent message(s) to determine whether the writing and wording followed the same pattern of Robert’s other correspondence. Maybe the message was too short to gain any kind of credible insight into whether Robert actually wrote that message.

            • carolina on 07/20/2010 at 6:43 PM

              They were text msgs, and they were apparently very, very short.

              • Bruce on 07/20/2010 at 6:49 PM

                Carolina:

                Last night you left a post, apparently directed to me, on the FAQ area that said: “For somebody who wants to play devil’s advocate, you sure as hell don’t know much about this case.”

                There was no room to further reply. Could you describe to me what in my posts yesterday indicates to you that I don’t know much about the case? If I am messing up facts, etc., I would like to know. Thanks

                • AnnaZed on 07/20/2010 at 6:51 PM

                  Bruce, generally speaking here at WMRW we all do our own homework just like we were taught in school. It’s the best way really.

                  • Bruce on 07/20/2010 at 8:25 PM

                    AnnaZed:

                    Both helpful and condescending

                    Many thanks!

        • chilaw79 on 07/20/2010 at 12:00 AM

          Precedent is much less important in criminal cases (past the motion stage) than in civil cases (since the basic elements of most crimes are well defined by statute). Most of the basic law for the civil case is pretty well settled, although there may be a few “new” issues presented by these facts.

          For example, it appears that Robert Wone was both a house guest and a potential business contact for Joe Price for Robert and Joe were to have a business meeting in the morning. One issue is what duty the home owner (particularly, Joe Price) owed to Robert as a guest in his home to prevent acts by a third party (e.g., locking the door, turning on the alarm). To the extent one or more of the Swann Street residents engaged in a willful criminal act against Robert Wone (for example, a sexual assault or unlawful restraint or even stabbing), death is a much more foreseeable result, particularly if one or more of the residents knew of any violent proclivities.

          For example, assume I contacted an old college friend, who I did not know was engaged in certain high risk activities, like drug dealing, and I was invited to stay overnight at her home. An intruder enters the home while I am sleeping, and stabs me to death while searching the home for drugs and money. Should my friend have warned me of her activities, particularly if she had been robbed before?

          Would the duty be the same if my friend (while in a drunken stupor) killed me forgetting I was staying overnight and thinking I was an intruder out to get her drugs and money, when I was just on my way to the bathroom? What if the home owner gave the key and the security code to a known drug addict?

          There is a case in DC where a criminal was successfully sued for wrongful death where they murdered the resident of a home they were robbing. The criminal’s girlfriend also was held liable since she knew what her paramour did for a living. Similarly,
          there are cases where a homeowner murdered an individual present on his property. To the extent an individual is engaged in a criminal act against someone present on the property, the question is whether death as the result of the act is reasonably foreseeable. The use of illegal drugs, restraints, or knife play all may increase the foreseeability of death.

          I am not suggesting that gay or lesbian activities in and of themselves are suspect. It is settled law in the United States that consensual sex is not a crime.

        • chilaw79 on 07/20/2010 at 2:54 PM

          The distance between the two locations (the RFA offices (2025 M Street) and 1509 Swann Street) is not far. It is no more than a ten minute trip by taxi at that time of night (e.g., not rush hour), and probably closer to a five minute trip.

          It was a hot night and it was getting late (for working lawyers). On a week night (particularly in August), downtown Washington usually is not busy.

      • chilaw79 on 07/20/2010 at 3:00 PM

        According to MapQuest, the driving time is 4 minutes and the distance is 1.14 miles.

  11. Susan on 07/19/2010 at 7:31 PM

    Now that the home is on the market it is open for viewing, I guess! Does anyone know if the original first to second floor staircase is still there? It is four years later but it would be interesting to see if they creak–unless they’ve been carpeted over.

  12. Stan on 07/19/2010 at 8:23 PM

    Okay, I’ll play. what was the purpose of this article? Nothing.

    This is, perhaps, the most childish blog posting ever written. A realtor’s reputation is everything, and all you did today was put together a lovely picture of salacious and tawdry picture of a very good woman’s work. You have cheapened her product with this very stupid posting.

    As for being a “customer”, I was very excited about your website and all the hard work you put into it. I spent a great deal of time reading it, and learned much about this case and all in volved. I even think that the bastards are guilty of murdering Robert, but the Prosecution just could seal the deal.

    Unfortunately, you have taken it upon yourselves to take leaps into the stupid. This post is one of them. you post n 6/19/10 “a Tale of Two Trials” was near the heights of absurdity, and now this just takes the cake.

    Again, people without shame fail to see that they have gone from providing a real service and turned, instead into a gossip mongering clique bent on spinning the most asinine, tangential bots of information into “infotainment.”

    You have become offensive in my eyes, and I will no longer read your blog. In fact, I hope the the murders find the time and money to sue you for your overt defamation of their characters.

    Signed off for good.

    • ccf on 07/19/2010 at 8:54 PM

      “what was the purpose of this article? Nothing.”

      I like information. The more the better. This blog provides information in which I am interested, so I come here.

      If every reporter is afraid of affecting reputation of someone, then nothing would be reported. And I don’t think this report would necessarily affect your friend’s business negatively. In fact, now knowing that she has many years of experience in real estate, I would probably call her up if I wanted to purchase a property in DC.

    • carolina on 07/19/2010 at 9:59 PM

      Honey, take a pill. In fact, take two; they’re small.

      • Alice on 07/21/2010 at 10:44 AM

        (I love you so much!)

    • CDinDC (Boycott BP) on 07/19/2010 at 10:03 PM

      Hmmm….I thought “damn, I need a realtor like that.” she went beyond the pale to please her customer.

    • EricFormerlyNewbie on 07/20/2010 at 8:44 AM

      I purchased a home that was the site of a previous murder in Virginia. VA and DC do not have what they call ‘morbidity’ clauses where the listing agent has to disclose things such as murders, cult activity, cannibalism, etc., really anything that would freak out a potential buyer. It did not freak me out, but I can say that I was a little pissed that this information is not required to be disclosed. I learned the full story from a neighbor my first weekend. So my advice to all home-buyers, ask the question. If you ask they have to answer. I agree with previous posters, I do not see how relating these facts damages the realtor’s reputation.

    • chilaw79 on 07/20/2010 at 11:02 AM

      You label them murderers and accuse others of overt defamation?

      Guess this will fall on deaf ears.

  13. Clio on 07/19/2010 at 8:36 PM

    “Luxury at it’s [sic.] best”: who is she kidding! I guess DC elites do have different definitions of luxury, beauty, justice, etc. than everyone else.

    An exorcism in the 21st century: that’s going the extra mile for the client?! Houses don’t kill people; people kill people, in a terrible transposition of an NRA slogan of a generation ago.

    To me, 1509 Swann should be bought and razed, but, barring that, it should be turned into a nonprofit headquarters or something to forward the common good. A half-way house? A drug rehab villa? Just a stray thought.

    • Susan on 07/19/2010 at 10:04 PM

      Hey Clio,

      Here’s an interesting article where they talk about the
      Betts’ house and what to do with homes with haunted pasts. Cox is also quoted as saying:

      “Once you clean up the house, and get rid of the evidence, and make it sparkle like any other house for sale, you move on,” she said. “It’s over.”

      Sparkle. That word in one form or another seems to make occasional cameos in this case.

      • Susan on 07/19/2010 at 10:05 PM

        “And get rid of the evidence….”?

      • Clio on 07/19/2010 at 10:37 PM

        Thanks, Susan, for that link. Those words of Ms. Cox are quite eerie, given the context and vocabulary of this case. But “it’s over”? — Maybe not in the Internet Age?

      • NYer on 07/20/2010 at 1:02 PM

        From Haunted Crime Scenes, by Katherine Ramsland:

        “It’s a fact that several states have laws that allow potential buyers to back out for such reasons. Sellers or renters have a duty to disclose physical defects, but there’s also such a thing as an “emotional defect,” which may label a place a “stigmatized property.” In other words, if the property has been “impacted” by a traumatic event, such as a murder or suicide, even if the event caused no physical destruction, it might have other negative repercussions. In Reed v. King, a California court allowed a purchaser to rescind a contract on a home when she discovered that a woman and her four children were murdered there.

        A few years later in 1991, a New York appellate court allowed a buyer to do the same when he learned that the house was reputed to be possessed by poltergeists. (One of the parties in the dispute even had psychics and ghost hunters come in to affirm it.) The decision was written in Stambovsky v. Ackley, in effect, saying: ‘While I agree with the Supreme Court that the real estate broker, as agent for the seller, is under no duty to disclose to a potential buyer the phantasmal reputation of the premises and that, in his pursuit of a legal remedy for fraudulent misrepresentation against the seller, plaintiff hasn’t a ghost of a chance, I am nevertheless moved by the spirit of equity to allow the buyer to seek rescission of the contract of sale and recovery of his down payment.’”

        For further reference on the NY Apellate Division case please see:
        http://lawschool.courtroomview.com/acf_cases/8932-stambovsky-v-ackley

  14. Eagle on 07/19/2010 at 9:06 PM

    Please tell me who-oh who- performed the exorcism?
    On second thought, maybe I don’t want to know the answer.

    • Clio on 07/19/2010 at 10:08 PM

      And, why would a public school teacher and later principal agree to having that procedure performed in his own home? And, most importantly, who would use a phone chat sex line in 2010 — that is so 1992!

      DC is a lavender Peyton Place after all, though, with these “queer” connections, coincidences, and conflicts amongst the “straight” people: one only wishes that the Editors were making all of this crap up.

      • chilaw79 on 07/20/2010 at 2:57 PM

        And here I thought DC was “sparkly” and “tres chic.”

        • carolina on 07/20/2010 at 6:49 PM

          Meow :)

  15. Rich on 07/19/2010 at 11:39 PM

    Dear Stan:

    If you’re still reading, “Very disappointing.”

    I’ve been on this blog since inception and on the case since the morning after the murder.

    Only recently, during the trial, did I begin to post. Most of the postings scare or bore me. As a group, we’re really into REHASH.

    How many times can we come up with a new scenario or theory?

    And, some postings are just a few clicks off center.

    But, the editors are doing a fine job keeping the story alive.
    If they stray, like with, “Stunning Development,” so be it. It was a slow news day and somewhat entertaining. It certainly didn’t deserve the enormous amount of discussion that went with it, but, that is what this group of people is about. They all have view points.

    I have learned so much from the site and have become just as addicted as the next guy. How, any of us are earning a living is beyond me.

    And, I bet we continue with this pursuit longer after the civil trial. Maybe, if we really do learn, “Who Murdered Robert Wone,” we will stop. Probably not.

    My domestic partner would be elated, if I got a life. But, for now, this is my life and the editors need to continue with their mission.

    It makes a difference.

    • Clio on 07/20/2010 at 8:38 PM

      Rich, you can have “a life”, job, and partner, and still comment upon the day’s Wone news. It really is possible!

      “Addiction” of a sort may have caused this mess: thus, one’s vices, of course, should only be done in moderation. Nonetheless, it does seem that Culuket did follow that advice, with the recent exception of food, of course.

  16. former crackho on 07/20/2010 at 10:48 AM

    I just don’t get why intelligent people can’t take what they need and skip the rest, or ignore the site completely if they don’t like its approach. Its a free country; the eds can and should post any darn thing they want.

  17. Curiousdc on 07/20/2010 at 10:51 AM

    Get a grip Stan! What kind of a person would sell a house like that without telling the buyer about its past? She deserves bad press.

    • CDinDC (Boycott BP) on 07/20/2010 at 12:40 PM

      I don’t think I’d want to know….ever. LOL

      • former crackho on 07/20/2010 at 12:59 PM

        I wouldn’t want to know either. But honestly, I wouldn’t care if I liked the house. Who knows what goes on in any “used” house before you buy it?

        • carolina on 07/20/2010 at 6:52 PM

          I have a friend who is on his sixth “used” home. He refuses to move in until the bathtub and all sinks and toilets have been replaced. I can just picture him buying 1509.

        • Robert H on 07/21/2010 at 8:22 PM

          Personally I wouldn’t buy a house if I knew a murder or violent crime had occurred in it even if I did like it. Some people actually gravitate to houses like these places I suspect…Take Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails who bought the Sharon Tate place in L.A. after she and others were brutally murdered by the Manson gang. Reznor recorded music in that house and made millions.

          • CDinDC (Boycott BP) on 07/21/2010 at 9:06 PM

            That is so ewwy.

            Here’s alittle blurb I just read about that….

            “In 1992, after looking at 15 houses in one day, Trent signed the lease on the infamous ‘Charlie Manson’ Tate house to record ‘The Downward Spiral’ before being informed of its bloody history. When he album was completed, the owner of the house moved forward with his plans for demolition, but not before Trent requested, and received
            permission, to keep the front door.”

            Apparently, he put the door on his present day recording studio that in an old mortuary.

            Ugh.

  18. AnnaZed on 07/20/2010 at 3:38 PM

    1509 Swann Street NW:
    Sales History (2001-present)
    $1,475,000 on June 3, 2008
    B: William N Herman
    S: Joseph Price, Victor J Zaborsky
    $1,276,500 on April 11, 2005
    B: Joseph Price, Victor J Zaborsky
    S: Eric Felix Kleinfeld, James Darrell Mangum

    So, as of today 1509 Swann Street NW, current owner: William N Herman. This would indicate to me that the current owner of the address is not a private party, but a real estate speculation and “asset management” entity owned by Mr. Herman known as Urban Realty Advisors LLC (now part of Monument Group). Did Mr. Herman and his family actually reside at Swann St? Have they ever?. Why does my pinging strange coincidence meter keep suggesting “of course not”? CDinDC speculated pretty interestingly about this on this very blog earlier in the year and it is this (not the possible presence of poltergeists or marauding ninjas) that interests me. I will quote from CD’s post here:
    http://whomurderedrobertwone.com/2010/03/08/separation-anxiety/

    “Asset protection planning is used to protect assets that would otherwise be at risk of lawsuits or at the risk of claims of creditors. Asset protection planning may involve preparing for the possibility of future lawsuits by rearranging the ownership of assets so that they are beyond the reach of potential creditors.”

    Here’s a kind of cool business relationship map for Mr. Herman (though for all I know it could be off date):

    http://www.corporationwiki.com/graphs/roamer.aspx?id=23177411

    Mr. Herman does own some real estate in Florida (not surprisingly). One wonders if perhaps the ownership of the valuable Swann St. property was somehow placed in a financial limbo in ways that Joe and Victor could retrieve equity from it later if the civil suit is unsuccessful. If I were Kathy Wone’s lawyer I would look closely at these entities. Perhaps one of the connected real estate groups.

    • carolina on 07/20/2010 at 6:54 PM

      I said exactly that, as well. It does look lived in, but that doesn’t mean it was lived in by the Hermans. I would think he could do better than Swann St.

      • Clio on 07/20/2010 at 8:43 PM

        But why would such an entity pick July 2010 as the best time to sell? Did the timing have anything to do with Lynn’s “cold comfort” from last month? Or, is it “sell now” as the trial publicity is dying down?

        • chilaw79 on 07/20/2010 at 10:38 PM

          The corporation may just need the money a sale would produce. Things are a little tight in the commercial real estate market in DC since lenders are not lending. It would be interesting to know whether the company had been trying to assemble property in that area for a larger residential building or commercial development.

  19. Clio on 07/20/2010 at 8:56 PM

    Is “urban land–sassafras–chillum” a common designation for soil type in DuPont? Does it exude “I’ve got to water the plants before all hell breaks loose or before Project Runway comes on, whichever happens first”!

  20. Susan on 07/20/2010 at 9:32 PM

    The house sale is covered in today’s Washington Post Style section:

    By The Reliable Source | July 20, 2010; 1:03 AM ET
    Surreal Estate: Wone slaying house for sale

    1509 Swann St. NW (Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post)Former owners: Joseph Price and Victor Zaborsky
    Asking price: $1.6 million
    Details: This 1886 brick-front rowhouse near Dupont Circle has a sad distinction — the Swann Street home where lawyer Robert Wone was killed in 2006. It has already changed hands once since his still-unsolved slaying, and the current owner is selling the property, report our colleagues Keith Alexander and Meg Smith. Wone’s friends Price and Zaborsky, who bought it in 2005 for $1.276 million, sold it in 2008 for $1.475 million. Last month, they were acquitted, along with Dylan Ward, on charges of conspiracy and obstruction of justice. Four bedrooms, 3 1/2 baths, roof deck.

    • Clio on 07/20/2010 at 9:44 PM

      Thanks, Susan. I wonder how Therese is keeping up with all of the calls after this Alexander & Smith special!

      Then again, what would the original owners of 1886 say if they knew about their home’s reputation today — Henry Adams and John Hay, we know, would not be amused!

      • Susan on 07/20/2010 at 9:56 PM

        The house is being “advertised,” that’s for sure. MSNBC’s headline is “Swann Street Murder House For Sale.” How could a potential buyer turn down a pitch like that…!

        I just read that Henry Adams’ wife committed suicide in 1886. Maybe she had a premonitio of things to come…

    • Susan on 07/20/2010 at 9:46 PM

      Something that was posted recently made me think of L. Goddard. Did the police question her, does anyone know? I know she is spoken of in good terms by those who know her on these pages, but my thought is that she has kept a low profile because her business is reporting the news and she made a conscious decision not to be the news.

      I wonder what she may know (if anything) that might be of interest to the authorities. Also, Peter Dernbach–former housemate with Lisa Goddard and JP and VZ.It’s interesting that PD also was based at Arent Fox the same time as JP (both apparently went to U-VA law school). I wonder if he ever saw the pics on JP’s computer. I wonder how close they are. Wonder if JP shared anything with him. Wonder if he’s reading these pages (I am filled with wonder!)

      • Clio on 07/20/2010 at 10:08 PM

        Susan, I think that both Lisa G. and Peter D. should be questioned by Covington counsel now, although they both should have been questioned by police in August 2006. I’m sure that they’re both wonderful human beings, but they probably have insights and anecdotes that would be “very” useful to the “very active” investigation.

        I am still waiting for the CNN special on this case, though. Why is it taking so long to produce, Editors?

        • Susan on 07/21/2010 at 1:06 AM

          Hey Clio,

          I hope you are right and they are questioned by Covington. Esp. Lisa who was there the next a.m.

          BTW, I haven’t seen posted anywhere here (though I’m still reading and reading) about any friends of DW. People who have known VZ and JP have posted here. Haven’t seen anything about friends of DW or anyone whose known him.

          • AnnaZed on 07/21/2010 at 1:09 AM

            I know, interesting isn’t it? It’s like they don’t have those newfangled interwebs in Washington State (or at any of the various colleges that he attended) or maybe no one wants to admit to knowing him.

            • carolina on 07/21/2010 at 7:15 AM

              Someone who knew him at Georgetown did post. They weren’t particularly surprised, but they did say he was very smart and very quiet, as I recall.

              • Susan on 07/21/2010 at 6:41 PM

                Interesting. And only one known post at that.

                But speaking of Peter Dernbach (earlier), here’s what I found out today:

                1. He went to U-VA with
                Joseph Price.

                2. He worked in IP law with J. Price at Arendt Fox.

                3. He works in Taiwan now and is listed on Asian Law sites (interesting!) and has had a Taiwan connection for at least 11 years.
                http://www.winklerpartners.com/files/INTA_Bulletin_0119.pdf

                4. He has a Facebook page worth checking out:
                http://www.facebook.com/people/Peter-Dernbach/1254361598

                And guess who he’s “friended”? One Mr. Louis Hinton, the very Mr. Hinton who had assault charges brought against him in connection with Michael Price, brother of JP, the same Mr. H who signed the condolenses book at Robert Wone’s funeral, etc., etc.

                Small world. Small world that revolves around Joe Price, anyway.

                BTW, he has connections with the supernatural,too. Perhaps he could get the friend featured in this article to tell the rest of the world WMRW?

                http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/feat/archives/2003/07/20/2003060234

              • Susan on 07/21/2010 at 6:48 PM

                Thanks, Carolina.

                Just posted the longest post but it did not take!!!

                So, here goes again.

                Found out some interesting facts about Mr. Peter Dernbach.

                Here it is, in a nutshell:

                1. He went to U-VA with Joseph Price.

                2. Worked in IP at Arent Fox with JP.

                3. He’s had a Taiwan connection for at least 11 years and now lives there.

                4. He’s got a very interesting Facebook page, with interesting friends, too. Nice picture of Louis Hinton in there. Yes, the one and same who wrote the touching note in the condolence pages for R. Wone, and who had assault charges brought against him in connection with Michael Price.
                http://www.facebook.com/people/Peter-Dernbach/1254361598

                • Susan on 07/21/2010 at 6:54 PM

                  http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/feat/archives/2003/07/20/2003060234

                  Mr. Dernbach might consider asking his friend Maurice to use his clairvoyance skills to tell us WMRW.

                  And here’s a link that didn’t take earlier:

                  http://www.winklerpartners.com/files/INTA_Bulletin_0119.pdf

                • Clio on 07/21/2010 at 8:48 PM

                  Susan, who knew that the Samuel Pepys of Silver Spring, Mr. Hinton, was friends with Mr. Dernbach, the successful matchmaker who brought “Sparkly Cat” to “Culuket”! DC is a Mayberry, however sophisticated, after all!

                  • Susan on 07/21/2010 at 8:58 PM

                    Theirs really does seem to be a small world, after all.

                    It’s interesting, too, that they had the same sort of set-up on Capitol Hill (of three gay men and one straight woman)that they had on Swann.

                    Did Peter D. really introduce Sparkles to Culuket?

                    • Clio on 07/21/2010 at 9:06 PM

                      Yes. For this, see the WaPo series of June 2009.

                  • Susan on 07/21/2010 at 9:06 PM

                    P.S. Thanks for mentioning S. Pepys. I learn about a lot of historical figures and times via your postings!

            • Susan on 07/21/2010 at 6:52 PM

              It is interesting how there seems to be only one known post on this site by someone who knew D. Ward and just someone who went to school with him.

              • CDinDC (Boycott BP) on 07/28/2010 at 6:57 PM

                I’ve always believed Dylan was probably a bit of a loner when he made it onto the DC scene.

                Seems like he may be a bit of a “cause celebre” these days.

          • busy reader on 08/23/2010 at 9:20 PM

            This might help, there could be more:
            GU92 on 05/24/2010 at 10:19 PM
            I went to Georgetown with Dylan Ward. We were casual acquaintances and haven’t had any contact since. I remember him as highly intelligent, perhaps too much for his own good in that he always seemed weighed down with emotion. I know he had a difficult time coming out to his parents, which could have had something to do with that. I wouldn’t question his intellect, though.
            http://whomurderedrobertwone.com/2010/05/24/day-5-wrap/
            GU92 on 05/24/2010 at 10:49 PM
            I was absolutely shocked. This may be hard to believe given what we know about his BDSM activities, but I remember him as being a very gentle soul. Of course, this was 18 years ago when we all were much younger.
            GU92 on 05/24/2010 at 11:21 PM
            True enough about BDSM, and of course its appeal to many people is the thrill of acting in a way that contradicts one’s public presentation.I would agree with you about Dylan trying to find himself, but when I knew him most of us were trying to find ourselves.
            MaNonVa on 07/15/2009 at 8:28 PM
            Without divulging too many details for the sake of my own anonymity, I wanted to share a little bit about my experience with the three suspects. I knew Dylan, Joe, and Victor for a while. I am in no way saying that these men are guilty of the murder of Robert Wone. What I believe is that by bringing as much information to the table, the truth will surely surface.
            Dylan:
            Dylan is professional and kind. He is extremely meticulous and seems to exhibit borderline OCD behavior based on his attention to detail in all aspects of his life. He is very quiet but can deliver a 1-liner joke that will make an entire group breakout in laughter. Dylan is extremely serious and cautious with his words. He is a very petit male that probably ways no more then 130-140 lbs. He has been described as looking angelic in person based on his blond hair and innocent expression. Professionally, he is one of the most professional people I have known. His power is exhibited when influencing others through subtle and gentle suggestions. He might come across as subdue and hesitant and meek but his relationship with Joe proved to me that Dylan also held very strong opinions and appeared to have an equal position in Joe’s life. At least this is the perspective I had of Dylan and Joe’s relationship. Dylan and Joe sometimes reminded me of an old married couple because they could bicker like the best of them. I knew Dylan as a person of many many gifts and hobbies. He was always very kind to me and quiet in his approach.
            http://whomurderedrobertwone.com/2009/07/08/the-real-killer/
            Denimama on 09/08/2009 at 12:09 PM
            Dylan Ward is a good friend of mine and I’ve got to say that this kind of baseless speculation is really quite abhorrent. You aren’t adding anything to helping solve this gruesome murder through the psychoanalysis of Dylan’s published works.
            http://whomurderedrobertwone.com/2009/09/04/trick-or-treat/

            • busy reader on 08/23/2010 at 9:29 PM

              The above was in reply to:
              Susan on 07/21/2010 at 1:06 AM
              “…Haven’t seen anything about friends of DW or anyone whose known him.”

  21. Susan on 07/21/2010 at 12:58 AM

    I was re-reading J. Price’s testimony to Sgt. Wagner and Norris (?), and it seems fairly consistent, but I didn’t see where he ever said he was applying pressure to RW’s wounds. He says VZ told him to apply pressure and he took a towel and did so. But at some other point VZ says that JP was already applying pressure. That seems to be missing from JP’s testimony.

    DW–Just don’t know. His late arrival on the scene, the magazine, the knife set–in his room–the torture devices, etc. I don’t know.

    And JP, there are times his statement ring very true for me–but then he makes the statement about the blood on his finger and it doesn’t seem credible. There’s the statement about cleaning up blood to his friend T. Ragone, but even without that statement, how could he life up the shirt, move the knife, supposedly apply pressure and ONLY get a dab of blood on one nail? Seems like there’d be more blood on him.

    Just ruminating on this and still reading posts I’ve never read before. Lot o’ information here.

    • carolina on 07/21/2010 at 7:18 AM

      And what technique did he use to pull the knife from Robert’s body and not leave blood on the cutting edge? Maybe they are *all* ninjas!

    • Gloria on 07/21/2010 at 11:06 PM

      In Dr. Lee’s testimony, he posited that the towel showed evidence that the heel of a hand was used to apply pressure to the wound. This was contrary to the prosecution’s attempt to establish a four-fingered contact of the hand onto Robert. On the other hand, this was when Dr. Lee was being notably obdurate, not giving an inch to the prosecution. Not sure what to make of this, but there it is. Four fingered or heel of hand — there should have been more blood than on one finger.

      • Susan on 07/21/2010 at 11:23 PM

        Gloria,

        In one article J. Price is quoted as saying that he “held” the towel on Robert Wone, which is diff. than applying pressure.

        But whether just holding or applying pressure, if he lifted RW’s shirt, removed the knife and had contact with the wounds and a towel, as we all realize, there should have been more blood on him than on just one fingernail. But the police asked and asked about it, and apparently he lied and lied. Apparently, due to the contradictory statements he made to his friends.

  22. NeighboronT on 07/21/2010 at 9:01 AM

    1509 Swann doesn’t have a happy history. It was pretty much gutted by fire about 18 years ago and sat boarded up for several years before it was extensively renovated. Then this.

    • chilaw79 on 07/21/2010 at 10:30 AM

      Tell us a little more about the fire (if you can) and the renovation (since it sounds like you have lived in the neighborhood for a while).

      I thought the home dated back almost 100 years, but now you indicate it was substantially reconstructed. It makes me wonder how the plumbing was so bad.

      Living in an older DC home myself, we are always doing maintenance or renovation to our home.

      • Rich on 07/21/2010 at 10:41 AM

        Dear Chi Law:

        That entire block was almost gutted and left as shells since the 1968 riots.

        The riots began around the corner one block North of 14th and U Street, NW on Wallach Place. (Between 13th and 14th and T and U Street.) Actually, the first brick was thrown and fire followed at the CVS Pharmacy (then People’s Drug Store) on the 1900th Block of 14th. The store reopened in 1986 with Metro following and I believe it has now moved up the street to, “V Street, NW.”

        Most of that area were shells until gays starting moving inot the neighborhood in the mid to late 80’s, like me.

      • NeighboronT on 07/28/2010 at 5:24 PM

        The fire occurred late in the early morning hours during the winter in the early 1990’s. It was suspected that it was started by a homeless person using the vacant property for shelter. Most of the interior was gutted and replaced (floors, walls, etc.) The shell is an old house at 100 years +, but the interior is very new.

  23. Susan on 07/21/2010 at 6:43 PM

    Thought I just posted something but don’t see it. Testing….testing….

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Purpose of this Site

On August 2nd, 2006, Washington attorney Robert E. Wone was murdered at 1509 Swann Street. Over two years passed before any criminal charges were filed - and then only conspiracy, obstruction of justice and crime scene tampering charges were brought against the Swann Street housemates, all present in the home on the night of the murder: Joe Price, Dylan Ward and Victor Zaborsky.

On May 17, 2010, a DC Superior Court trial got underway and all three defendants were all acquitted in that bench trial on those pending charges.

Nearly four years later, very little seems clear about what happened that night and who murdered Robert Wone. A cloud of suspicion remains over the Swann Street defendants who have denied any involvement in the murder of their friend or in the alleged cover up.

Judge Lynn Leibovitz found a moral certainty in their collective guilt, but not evidentiary certainty. Civil proceedings in a wrongful death suit filed by Robert's family is the next chapter in this tragic story.

We continue to work together seeking answers to the mystery of Robert Wone's murder and in finding justice for his memory and legacy.

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