Radio Silence

Where We’re At, And What May Come

Many have asked us of late for any news of a settlement in the case, or even if any settlement has actually been reached.

While we have nothing new we can share, we will note this: it’s been six weeks since there was any filing whatsoever in the case.  In our two and a half years of following the criminal and now civil trial, that’s never happened before.

Of course, absence of a thing is not proof of its opposite – argumentum ad ignorantium is something that the defendants may have tried (“It can’t be one of us so it must be an intruder”) but we were instructed better in logic.  Still, for the present we’re sticking to the story that a settlement has largely been reached.

Of course, what kind of settlement, and involving who specifically, might be the better questions now.  Would the Wone family agree to a mere financial agreement in light of their (arguably) stronger position in the civil trial than the criminal?  And which defendant(s) may have reached a deal?

Is it possible that one or two of the defendants have decided to take their losses now at the expense of one of their former partners?  Yes, it’s very possible.  And more importantly, could any deal reached possibly begin to break new ground in the DC Police Department’s murder investigation?

We noted with interest a small item this Saturday in the Washington Post.  “Ft. Washington Man Arrested in Two DC Homicides From Late 90’s” read the headline to Matt Zapotosky’s story, detailing the arrest of Cederick Shuler, 35, in connection to two homicides from 1998 and 1999.  “Police did not say why they believed Shuler was responsible or what they believed his motive was,” was the sentence that caught our eye.

We’ve always found it a little hard to just accept Chief Lanier’s comments that the Wone case remains “very active” and just move on.  But there is no statute of limitations on murder, and there’s no telling what may dislodge over the coming months.  As we said before – settlement doesn’t mean it’s over.

263 comments for “Radio Silence

  1. Gloria
    07/11/2011 at 1:40 PM

    The word “mere” in “mere financial agreement” (above) struck my eye … and my conscience. The Wone family has my full sympathy and understanding if they have decided to settle part or all of the civil case without knowing the full truth of Robert’s death. Having been through a looong legal case, that I filed as a matter of ethics with a negligible financial gain, I understand the wear and tear that these cases can take on a person.

    Against my attorney’s advice, I decided to settle (with a few minor concessions by the other side), realizing any possible outcome could never approach the aggravation, and retailiation, I was experiencing. At some point, even the most determined litigants have to assess whether any possible outcome of the case is worth pursuing, for their own mental health as well as financial and logistical burden. Especially so if you’re met with nothing but stone walling. The legal process is terribly onerous. We don’t know what is happening behind the scenes, but in case the family did decide to settle, I hope we’ll all empathize with their reasoning. Even from the little that we have seen at hearings, etc., they (not only Kathy but also out of town mother, aunt, brother, etc.) have been incredible troupers, sitting through every minute, bearing witness to Robert’s memory.

    • Bruce
      07/11/2011 at 2:45 PM

      Hi Doug:

      As it did with Gloria, my eye was struck by the word “mere” in “mere financial agreement” in your article, and its suggestion (?) or implication (?) that something more than a financial settlement could be made in the civil case.

      Since insurance companies are involved, and we have no idea what money, if any, is being discussed, I don’t think you mean “mere” in the sense of “little”, as in a possible settlement not being much money, but if that is what you meant, please clarify.

      In its context, I think you mean “mere” as in “only.”

      In my opinion, the only type of settlement that could be had in this case would be money. Nothing else, that I can think of.

      There is just no way, in my opinion, that any of the defendants can admit fault in any way, because of the “active” murder investigation. These attorneys, and frankly, these defendants, are too smart to allow any type of settlement that could put their lives or freedom in jeapardy.

      Certainly, a settlement can include payments in the future, but, again, it is just money, nothing more.

      On that note, a structured settlement may be possible here, particularly if Kathy Wone has any thought to remarriage or having or adopting a baby (there is absolutely no evidence to suggest either,mind you, and I am not suggesting this as anything but a mere possibilty), or if she would rather get guaranteed payments over time rather than just one big payment to manage.

      A structured settlement gives money over time. It is usually administered and guaranteed by an insurance company and is a fairly “safe” alternative to being paid simply in a single lump sum. In other words, with a structured settlement, you don’t get everything up front, but you get certain payments over time that are greater (in total) than a lump sum amount would be, because of compounded interest. Usually, a structured settlement will involve a pay-out immediately of certain cash, and then payments thereafter every week, every month, every year or multiples of years.

      Here’s what the defense might offer, and it is all just made up here: Mrs. Wone, here is $1 million dollars, which you can take as a lump sum if you like. Or, if you like, we can work out a structured settlement with that $1 million that will actually give you $1.3 million over 30 years, with a payment of $300,000 right now, and $10,000 a month to you or who you name in your will, if you die in that 30 years. Now, I just made that up and the numbers don’t work out, so sue me, but that is the principle.

      However, structured settlements do not always apply to the particular situation at hand, and may very well not apply here with Mrs. Wone. If not, she is much more likely to just take a lump sum right now, with no payments in the future.

      Of course, Mrs. Wone and her attorneys may be demanding that the defendants sign notes or make legally binding promises to pay Mrs. Wone money in the future. Frankly, I don’t see this happening, but it is just my opinion.

      If I were Mrs. Wone’s attorney, I would not suggest future payments from the defendants. It will likely just call for further legal action and collection, even if the defendants felt a good faith (as if they were capable of that, right????) obligation to make those payments now. None of the defendants appear to be in a super financial situation right now. By that, I mean none of the defendants appear to me to have a virtually guaranteed good income stream over the next 30 years. What if one of them gets cancer, etc., or dies accidently, or another scandal makes work impossible.

      If I were the defendants’ attorney, I would not suggest that any defendant be responsible for future payments, for the same reason. That would likely be a deal breaker for any settlement, in my lowly opinion. If you are going to end this thing, there should be some finality to it, for both sides. That would be my legal recommendation to both sides, although I would, of course, have a legal conflict and could not give “real” legal advise in this situation to both sides, since they have opposing interests.
      If the case does settle, I believe it will be because the insurance company is willing to pay some serious money, in the form of a lump sum or structured settlement?

      But, of course, this is all speculation and opinion, I admit and mostly opinion. What do others think? Could Mrs. Wone and her attorneys get anything more than money if the case does settle? If so, what do people think of how it will go down?

      • Bruce
        07/11/2011 at 3:14 PM

        And Gloria, I am very sorry you had the experience that you did. The justice system, both civil and criminal, is very frustrating. While it may seek justice, it rarely finds it.

        • Clio
          07/11/2011 at 9:01 PM

          I agree with you there, Bruce. Of course, unlike you, I am worried that a “mere” monetary settlement may mean that we’re never hear the fat ladies sing. But, like everyone else, I’ll respect the decision of Kathy and the Wone family for whatever they settle. The “radio silence” is deafening, but, as Bruce points out, there is still the theoretical possibility of a murder trial out in the distance, if the MPD ever get their act together. And that is a big if. Sigh!

      • Bill Orange
        07/12/2011 at 12:38 AM

        Robert Wone was, by all accounts, someone who planned ahead. I don’t remember how long he and Kathy had been married, but my recollection was that it was a few years. Furthermore, Kathy had had significant health problems during their marriage. Given this, I would guess that Robert Wone had a life insurance policy that was for anywhere from 500K to 2 mil. Furthermore, Kathy Wone is an attorney herself and presumably could make a decent living on her own. The bottom line is that $1 million dollars is very unlikely to convince her to close the one remaining avenue she has to bring her husband’s killer(s) to justice. I think any true settlement is going to go something like this:

        1. Kathy Wone will drop a defendant from the suit in exchange for their FULL co-operation with the police.

        2. The insurance company is forcing a settlement on everything that it’s liable for, just to get the hell out of this case. (Note that Cat doesn’t think this is possible, so I’ve got a legal expert on here who’s already saying this is not a viable settlement option.)

        3. The defendants have some substantial dirt on either Robert or Kathy Wone, and Kathy Wone is settling with all three to prevent this from becoming public.

        • Cara
          07/12/2011 at 1:36 AM

          I’d be surprised if he had a life insurance policy other than what his employer gave, at that age. They didn’t have kids. Am I underestimating the youth of our nation?

          I only wish somebody were cooperating, Bill O. Let’s cross our fingers.

          • AnnaZed
            07/12/2011 at 2:29 AM

            Normally I would go along with this reasoning, but Robert Wone was a special case and I would not be surprised if he had additional coverage (additional to that provided by his employers I mean).

        • Bill 2
          07/12/2011 at 11:45 AM

          Bill O, It’s nice to dream about your #1 option. If that were the case, an early hint of that would be that one of the trio has moved out of the Florida household. It would be interesting to know if someone has recently moved back to Aunt Marcia’s home.

          • Bill Orange
            07/12/2011 at 2:56 PM

            How sure are we that they’re all still living together in Florida?

            Frankly, the longer the radio silence goes on, the more likely I am to conclude that someone has cut a deal with both Kathy Wone and the government and is testifying in front of a grand jury. And doesn’t Victor’s job take him to DC quite often, even if he’s still living in Florida? I wonder how long his lunch breaks last.

            • Craig
              07/12/2011 at 3:55 PM

              All three are together in the Sunshine State we’re told – and had DC guests come down to celebrate the 4th of July holiday with them. Independence Day(s).

              • Bill 2
                07/12/2011 at 6:15 PM

                Scott Hixson? Sarah Morgan?

              • mw
                07/12/2011 at 6:42 PM

                I wonder if any of them spent the night.

                • Bruce
                  07/12/2011 at 7:07 PM

                  I’m betting the boys don’t even inquire anymore as to whether someone wants to stay over.

                  • Clio
                    07/12/2011 at 7:18 PM

                    Does their cozy bungalow even have a guest room? Or, have they replaced any guest room with a proper library or sewing room?

                    • Clio
                      07/12/2011 at 8:45 PM

                      Or, a home gym complete with its own shower stall?

                    • Bruce
                      07/14/2011 at 10:38 AM

                      Clio! I thought you would suggest a sunny dungeon.

              • Clio
                07/12/2011 at 7:28 PM

                Were those DC guests male or female or somewhere in-between? Faded alt dot bomb tricks, or old aunties giving makeover tips?

                The trouple reunited should, perhaps, call their remaining decades — Dependence Day(s). To many observers, they are all now truly co-dependent upon each other in perpetuity in part because of the gauntlet of this scandal. Will Uncle Michael become a Florida resident soon, too? Sigh!

        • Linda S.
          07/12/2011 at 6:33 PM

          the “dirt” theory sounds reasonable to me.

          • AnnaZed
            07/12/2011 at 8:32 PM

            Based on what?

            • Cat from Cleveland
              07/12/2011 at 9:23 PM

              In twenty years of representing individuals in various matters, I have come to believe that everyone has something they would prefer to keep private. I’m not suggesting that anyone in the Wone family has a “skeleton”, I’m merely suggesting that this type of litigation is extraordinarily intrusive. It is not uncommon for civil litigants to settle claims because the prospect of having their entire life turned inside out for public inspection is simply too much to take.

              The Wone family seems to prefer privacy to publicity. I would not be surprised to learn that the family made the decision to keep their lives private rather than allow their most personal feelings to become a public spectacle. I would not blame anyone for making that decision, especially if they stood to gain nothing from a public trial except a judgment on paper.

              • Bill Orange
                07/13/2011 at 8:34 AM

                At a guess, I would say that Kathy Wone was probably asked a bunch of questions about her and Robert’s sex life, which may have been a bit of an eye-opener for her.

                • Bruce
                  07/14/2011 at 10:41 AM

                  Bill O:

                  You could very well be right on that. I do expect, however, that her attorneys prepared her in great detail as to every area and possible question that could be asked at the deposition.

      • Cara
        07/12/2011 at 1:24 AM

        A judgment in a civil suit would find someone responsible for the wrongful death of Robert Wone (as the Goldman family had against OJ). A settlement would mean that there would be no such (I don’t know the legal terms) decision. So if Doug said “merely,” in terms of a settlement, Bruce, he may have meant that a financial settlement was something less than a finding that the outcome of a full civil case might garner.

        • Cara
          07/12/2011 at 1:28 AM

          Ugh, “could” not “would”

        • Bea
          07/12/2011 at 12:06 PM

          Well said. I agree that this case has a lot to do with finding legal liability – and that such motive is greater than money. That’s why the notion of settlement makes one wonder.

          That’s not to say that Kathy Wone shouldn’t settle – she may well be spent on this neverending pursuit. But my guess is still that she’s not settling with everyone or that if she’s settling with everyone it’s with some sort of an allocution.

          • Gloria
            07/12/2011 at 2:00 PM

            Uh, “allocution”? I found 3 definitions. The two seemingly relevant here are below. Define, please, Bea, as relates to the particulars of this case. Many thanks.

            1.The procedure during sentencing when a judge gives a convicted defendant the opportunity to make a personal statement on his own behalf to mitigate the punishment that is about to be imposed. The defendant does not have to be sworn before he makes his address, his comments are not subject to cross-examination, and the opportunity may include the right to offer evidence (such as an explanation for his conduct or a reason why severe sentence should not be imposed) beyond a request for mercy or an apology for his conduct.
            2.A similar procedure where the victim of a crime is given in some states the opportunity to personally speak, before punishment is imposed, about the pain and suffering suffered or about the convicted defendant.

            • Bea
              07/12/2011 at 3:59 PM

              Hey Gloria, I don’t mean it as is done in a criminal context, just a short cut for saying that there may be some settlement condition which requires the defendants to tell what they know about the night that may go beyond what they told cops. If, for example, there were additional facts that Kathy believes and gave rise to the settlement, perhaps she wants them written down and signed off on. This could’ve come as part of the mediation, or an offshoot of mediation, where she had a confidential Q and A with the defendants. This is just speculation – sorry I didn’t make clear my use of allocution – I had discussed it last week and wrongly assumed that I needn’t explain use in this context.

              • Bea
                07/12/2011 at 3:59 PM

                Also, it’s possible that she’s having them “warrant” that certain facts are true, and if deemed otherwise, the settlement could be set aside and the civil action resumed.

  2. Boggled
    07/11/2011 at 1:56 PM

    We can always hope. Here’s a case where murder charges were brought 54 years later:

    • susan
      07/11/2011 at 7:58 PM

      Thanks, Boggled, that is inspiring. Such stories always are. Kudos to the investigators who took up the case.

      Thanks editors for this new post.

    • susan
      07/12/2011 at 10:11 PM


      WGN TV just had a report on this case.

      It seems the cops then didn’t do all they could. It really seems that there should be penalties for police who do shoddy work. We’d really same money statewide and federally if there were a financial penalty for cops who cut corners.

  3. Bruce
    07/11/2011 at 6:48 PM

    Doug, your post is full of treasures I find as I read over it again.

    In addition to the “mere” usage:

    (1) You say (regarding settlement): “While we have nothing new we can share….” Emphasis on the phrase “we can share.” Do you have something that you can’t share? Just curious as to why you added the phrase, rather than just saying “…we have nothing new.”

    (2) As to whether there may be a breaking of the ranks by the defendants, and the possibility of one or more settling and the remaining going to trial, you say: “Yes, it’s very possible.”

    That is very interesting. Very possible is much more than just possible. Do you have information in this regard? Can you or the other editors share?

    While your post seems to suggest that this is actually happening, and you would surely know better than stupid old me, I just have a hard time believing it. This civil case is just about money. The worst thing that could happen is a money judgment.

    Money does not come even close to the perils of losing one’s life or freedom in a jail, if one or more of the defendants were to point to another and inculpate them. I just don’t see that happening here. The criminal matter that passed, and the “very active” murder investigation going on now (according to some) are the really important things, 1000 times as important, in my opinion, as this civil case, from the defendants’ perspectives, in my opinion. While it may be nice to fantasize about, are there any real reasons to seriously contemplate it?

    Is there really anything out there that supports this “very possible” scenario, which you can “share” with us? Thanks!

    • Bruce
      07/12/2011 at 11:25 AM

      I should clarify that when I said in my post: “This civil case is just about money,” this was not directed towards any motive in bringing the suit by Mrs. Wone. What I should have said is: The only thing a jury can do if it finds against the defendants in the civil case is award a money judgment.” I don’t for a moment want to suggest that Mrs. Wone sued only for the money.

      As to possible life insurance, we are all speculating. With a married couple of two working attorneys, it is certainly possible that emphasis was not placed on insurance, but I agree that Robert Wone was a very careful person, so who knows? Usually, I think, it is the birth or adoption of a child that really sparks a family’s interest in life insurance, but everyone is different. It is very likely that Robert Wone would have some life insurance, which he could likely increase if he wanted to pay for it, through his employer.

  4. Bea
    07/11/2011 at 7:07 PM

    I am all for whatever Kathy Wone wants to do. She’s the one who has suffered. While she will likely listen to Robert’s parents’/brother’s desires, there’s a reason the spouse should make the final call.

    That aside, I personally doubt she’ll be settling with all three defendants for money alone. I may be wrong but I suspect that there may be something in the works which either is limited to one/two defendants or has to do with an insurance pay-out on negligence (but allows going forward on intentional acts with insurance possibly paying most of the freight).

  5. Bill Orange
    07/13/2011 at 8:45 AM

    Let me add a #4 to my list of reasons to settle, from above, and I’d say this is quite unlikely: Kathy Wone may have concluded that she’s gotten all of the information that she’s going to get from the defendants, she may have gotten quite a bit of additional information from other witnesses, and she may suspect that additional criminal charges are about to be filed. In that situation, it would make sense for her to settle (for substantially more than the insurance cap) in order to (a) get rid of the legal team provided by the insurance company, and (b) deplete the defendants’ resources to hire more “experts” and lawyers at their next trial.

    Like I said, I think this is unlikely, but it’s in the realm of possibility. Covington has considerable resources and could do much more thorough investigations of the supporting players in this drama. If they caught someone lying in the depositions–and remember, the scope of their questioning was probably quite broad–they may have flipped someone like Sarah Morgan, Scott Hixson, or Michael Price.

    • Emily
      07/13/2011 at 9:40 AM

      You have an ingenious mind Bill Orange.

      Can someone who knows more than me (that is, nothing) about the activities of U.S. insurance companies to protect their assets give us an idea of what sort of investigation the insurance company might have conducted into the goings on at Swann Street? Would there ever be a situation where an insurance company would hand over the results of their indepenent investigation to police in order to reduce their liability?

      • Bill Orange
        07/14/2011 at 9:57 AM

        I think Cat’s the expert on this. Her opinion was that it’s going to be very hard for the insurance company to get out of this. She’s the expert, and I’m just a smartass in the peanut gallery, so I’d trust her judgement on this over mine, but my opinion is that the insurance company has a fairly easy way out of this: They can just do their own investigation. I don’t know the details of the insurance contract, but I’m fairly sure that if your house burned down, your insurance company would be entitled to ask you if you started the fire on purpose. And if you told them that, on the advice of council, you were declining to answer the question, I’d also be fairly sure that they’d find a way to void your insurance contract.

        From my layman’s perspective, the defendants are essentially being sued for two different things: (a) Negligence, which allowed a ninja assassin to kill Robert Wone, and (b) intentionally killing Robert Wone. I really can’t see how they can be responsible for both–if (a) is true, then (b) is false, and vice versa. My understanding is that the insurance company is only on the hook for (a)–insurance is for accidents, not for intentional killings. So the insurance company has a fairly powerful interest in finding out what happened here. And I can’t see how the defendants would be able to invoke their fifth amendment rights and still keep their insurance policy if/when their insurance investigator started asking questions.

        • AnnaZed
          07/14/2011 at 1:09 PM

          I wonder if it could be construed as some variety of negligence for Joe and Victor to have allowed Dylan in their home in the first place, or having given Michael the keys for that matter. Sarah might well think so. Probably not in a legal sense … still.

        • Burke
          07/14/2011 at 7:07 PM

          The other option is that one or two negligently killed Robert – didn’t intend to, didn’t mean to, tried to wash him off, but did. Interesting how the interviews (as several of you have pointed out) reflected a certain dismissiveness of Robert and barely concealed annoyance (so inconsiderate of him to have broken up the party and died). Also, while the existence of dirt is possible, no evidence supports that as to the Wones – unlike for the trouple. The case has gone on and on so it is understandable why Mrs. Wone might want to end it especially if there was a break of some kind. Covington is among the best of the best – and this is personal.
          Deciding to settle for $ for the loss of a loved one is wrenching.
          Not clear to me why Morgan, Hixson or M Price would have flipped. Michael being absent from his blood-related class that night, though, still is peculiar.
          Going back to Cat’s question of the other day, the significant elements to me when combined as they were, are:
          1. The absence of independent evidence that there was a break-in.
          2. The condition of Robert’s body
          3. Joe’s and Dylan’s modus operandi involving restraint and confinement, and drugs
          4. The behavior of the three before, during, and after.
          Thanks, websiters and commentators for your insights.

          • susan
            07/14/2011 at 9:21 PM

            Hi Burke,

            I can’t imagine that any of the trio flipped, not if they spent the 4th together. But I don’t think their living together implies they still call themselves a family or trouple. I think they have taken the strategy of united we stand…I think, as someone else here pointed out, that as soon as the civil case is closed, there will be some splitting.

            Re Ms. Wone, she has been through so much. I imagine that any “dirt” would involve the visit to her in the hospital and thus dredge up her health issues which may be a sensitive issue for her. But if that’s the “dirt” then it would be dirty of JP, V, and D to engage in that sort of tactic.

            Even if hypothetically all are totally innocent of murder, JP at the least is not innocent of giving out the house key to individuals that he told his paying tenant (SM) he wouldn’t give a key to, and allegedly not locking the back door.

            • Burke
              07/14/2011 at 9:30 PM

              Thanks Susan! Good points all.

            • Clio
              07/14/2011 at 10:28 PM

              Why would Joe give Uncle Michael a key, knowing what he knew about him? Why would anyone over 30 give their brother a key to their home?

              • Bruce
                07/15/2011 at 10:48 AM

                Funny how people love their siblings, especially those with problems. You always think you can save them, but rarely can you do a damn thing. Familial bonds are historically significant, Ms. History.

                • Clio
                  07/15/2011 at 3:35 PM

                  Well, of course, they are significant, Mr. Defens(ive), but why would one give a key to one’s fancy house in DuPont Circle to one’s troubled, adult brother with documented problems? A gentleman/lady can help his/her brother without giving him/her a key to the house!!

                  • Bruce
                    07/16/2011 at 2:20 PM

                    True, Clio.

                    I think you raise a worthy question.

                    Thinking objectively, most of us would probably not have given Michael a key, I would agree with you.

                    However, the fact that his brother had a key does not really surprise me, is all I am saying.

                    My point is that siblings don’t always see each other objectively, as we can easily do from our computer chairs.

                    Right or wrong, it appears that Price played a role of protector to his brother. And this after he related to the cops how this same brother used to beat him up and had brushes with the law.

                    While we can scoff at that easily from our perch, familial bonds can be very strong.

                  • Bruce
                    07/16/2011 at 2:23 PM

                    Thank you for calling me “Mr. Defens(ive)” rather than “Mr. Offensive.”

                    I know you were thinking of it….

                    • Clio
                      07/16/2011 at 5:45 PM

                      Bruce, darling, your charm has suddenly
                      returned, and one cannot stay angry with you for too long, despite your unfortunate views on the trouple. XO, Clio.

          • Bill Orange
            07/14/2011 at 11:52 PM

            I’m not sure how you “negligently” stab someone three times.

            • Burke
              07/15/2011 at 1:14 AM

              Bill Orange – Whoa
              I am not going to argue with you – respect your straightforward clear thinking too much
              But could they have killed Robert by what they did to him before – didn’t mean to – uh oh …oh no
              As to stabbing, couldn’t Robert have been dead by then? It seems like a symbol – three – like murder on the orient express meaning we are all are in this together – after it happened though

              • Bill Orange
                07/15/2011 at 9:02 AM

                I keep pointing this out, and it bears repeating again and again, because everyone seems to keep forgetting it: The evidence presented at trial showed that Robert Wone was still alive in the ambulance when he was being transported to the hospital. He was also still alive when he arrived at the ER (and was NOT pronounced “dead on arrival”–DOA), and he was still alive during the first part of a fairly intensive resuscitation effort in the ER. (We haven’t seen the actual medical records of this, but the testimony at trial and the autopsy report both make clear that the ER team made a major effort to save his life.) Someone might have THOUGHT he was already dead, and stabbed him as a result, but that still isn’t negligence or an accident. That’s an intentional stabbing, albeit without the intent to kill. (KiKi can check me on this, but I think the lack of intent to kill would mean that this wouldn’t be considered “murder” in the legal sense.)

                And I have no idea if or how the “felony murder rule” would apply to this case, but I’m guessing that prosecutors would be able to find a way to make a murder charge stick if the story turns out to be, “We thought we’d already killed him, so we stabbed him to death.”

                • KiKi
                  07/15/2011 at 9:49 AM

                  It’s not a simple answer. To prove Murder 1, you must show that they purposely killed him. This would be a difficult question in the scenario above because if he was not dead but appeared dead but then they stabbed him to cover it up, it would be hard to prove that they had the specific intent necessary. However you can also get to murder 1 if you killed someone by purposely poisoning, but if he didn’t actually die of the drugs and died of the stabbing, than I don’t think that would apply. However you can also get Murder 1 under the felony murder statute. Specifically, you could get murder 1 if you kill someone without the specific intent to kill but the killing involved a controlled substance or sex abuse. So in the scenario you describe above, this would be the most applicable provision.

                  Murder 2 requires malice aforethought or a general intent, which I also think would be hard to prove in the scenario you presented.

                • Bea
                  07/15/2011 at 1:30 PM

                  Bill O, you’re on the right track, and while the jury instructions will provide the legal roadmap to follow, the penultimate act is:

                  the jury sees that a man gets stabbed with “surgical precision” three times (was stabbed when alive because he’s still alive fifteen minutes later). If it can be established WHO stabbed him (the big IF) then the jury will see “intent” in the precise nature of the three wounds. But in my opinion, one of the defendants will have to flip or there will be outside evidence not considered pointing to a different person as murderer – BUT I completely agree that those stab wounds are not going to be overlooked by the jury even if the murderer takes the stand (highly unlikely) and says “I thought he was dead!!!”

                • Clio
                  07/16/2011 at 9:20 AM

                  Very telling, BO. In his 911 performance, Victor seems to assume that Robert is dead, and Joe does not seem to making heroic efforts to preserve life: did they just run out the clock to make sure that he would die? If so, despicable!

                  • alternateguy
                    07/16/2011 at 11:24 AM


                    Once more a reference to the horrifying 911 call.

                    And once more it is described as a “performance.”

                    Well, after listening to the call repeatedly for some years, my thoughts haven’t changed.

                    If you are going to describe Victor’s 911 call as a “performance,” then that word should be preceded by the words, Academy Award winning.

                    There is nothing false, contrived, made up, and certainly not rehearsed, here. This phone call, while perhaps embarrassing or heartbreaking, has nothing in common with anything ever heard on a soap opera. This call, in my opinion, was clearly not acting. What you are hearing on the 911 call is, sadly, reality. Uncomfortable, embarrassing, horrifying reality.

                    You say, “Victor seems to assume that Robert is dead…” However, Clio, I hear no words whatsoever that suggest that to me. Can you please be more specific? Exactly what does Victor say in the 911 call that leads you to believe that he assumes that Robert is dead?

                    To me, the call clearly shows. 1. Urgency (a sense of passing time.) 2. Focus.(Stick to the task at hand.) 3. Struggle (for control of emotions.) 4. Fear (for the fate of Robert and fear of an unknown intruder.) Am I somehow wrong in this?

                    Detractors here have often suggested that Victor shows no fear of there being a murderer in the house. The 911 call shows quite the opposite.

                    I have read one account where a newsman said that it’s suspicious that the first words out of Victor’s mouth were his saying that someone has come into our house and stabbed someone. NO! The first words are his stating that they need an ambulance. Then a precise statement is made that someone has come into their house and stabbed someone. Clearly, to me, this is Victor’s attempt to get across the precise information needed to get the help he is asking for. (Ambulance and police.)

                    For the most part, he is struggling to get information from Joe and to answer the operator’s questions.

                    It has been suggested that the trio met the first responders showing little sense of urgency. However, we can clearly hear Victors words when meeting the first responders at the door. And what we hear is a long way from being some ho-hum greeting.

                    • Clio
                      07/16/2011 at 6:03 PM

                      Well, he’s already won a CLIO (over my objections, of course), so perhaps a special Oscar for the best 911 audition tape may be in order for the milkman.

            • 07/16/2011 at 5:10 PM

              Hey Bill O:

              A really bad hand tremor?

              Complete lack of short term memory?

              Just kidding. I agree with you. I don’t know exactly what went down that night at Swann St., but I don’t think for a moment that negligence was involved at all.

              • Bill Orange
                07/17/2011 at 1:07 PM

                I’ve said before that I really didn’t understand the judge’s written ruling. Either they were all involved, or they weren’t. If they really weren’t involved, and Robert really was stabbed by a ninja intruder, I wouldn’t find them liable for negligence. Yes, they left the back door unlocked, but the only way to that door was through the back gate, which was locked. By any reasonable standard, I would say that the premises were “secure”, so I can’t see any negligence on their part. Intentional killing, perhaps, but not negligence.

                • susan
                  07/17/2011 at 1:22 PM

                  If it could be found that keys were distributed to individuals with past convictions, etc., and/or you had random strangers in for alt encounters, etc., perhaps negligence could be established. Then again, none of the residents of 1509 Swann can “prove” that a door was left unlocked. However, it can be proved that at least one key was given out that wasn’t accounted for to police.

                  • Bill Orange
                    07/17/2011 at 9:17 PM

                    Michael Price was, at that point, “on the wagon”, from what I can recall. Price also said that contractors and several other people had keys to the house, which I think is a fairly typical situation for most people.

                    Maybe I’m missing the legal definition of negligence, but my common-sense question would be: Did the defendants take reasonable precautions–i.e. typical precautions that a reasonable person would take–to prevent a phantom intruder from entering the house and stabbing Robert Wone to death? I would say yes. The front door was locked. The back patio gate was locked. The back door is kind of a moot point to me, seeing as the only way to the back door was through the (locked) back gate. So the premises were, in my opinion, secure. Yes, they could’ve locked the back door, and yes, they could’ve turned the security system on, but they also could’ve hired a private security team to watch Robert Wone while he slept.

                    My point is, by any reasonable definition, the premises were secure. I don’t see how you can prove negligence here.

              • Bill Orange
                07/17/2011 at 9:22 PM

                Let me amend my statements with one additional point that I hadn’t thought of at first: The defendants have invoked their fifth amendment rights on over 400 questions in this case. If ANY of those questions relate to the negligence claims (e.g., “To your knowledge, was Robert Wone in any danger when he arrived at the house that evening?”), then I’d change my opinion and say the jury should rule for the plaintiff on this issue.

                • susan
                  07/17/2011 at 10:17 PM

                  Bill O: I think that same year or very nearly (correct me if I’m wrong anyone) there was the crim. case against L. Hinton and LH had stayed at 1509 Swann. Was he locked out unless someone let him in? Did he have a key–but return it. One thing the crim. trial made clear: Sarah Morgan had asked Joseph Price to NOT give a key to his brother as that would make her uncomfortable. He did give a key to his brother but didn’t tell Sarah Morgan or the police. The police discovered it by virtue of the place being robbed by MP. Did anyone else have a key? Because JP has lied before on the subject and any information from any owner or resident of 1509 Swann has not been forthcoming, who knows.

                  • susan
                    07/17/2011 at 10:35 PM

                    Maybe LH is a fine guy and the domestic abuse thing was an abberation. Nevertheless, apparently he listed 1509 Swann as his address during his crim. trial in April 2006. Did he have a key?

  6. Clio
    07/13/2011 at 7:05 PM

    So, Victor has returned to the top of his game by pushing milk and cookies on unsuspecting grandmas, and the trouple have reunited in sexy Miami only to start entertaining guests from their old stomping grounds once again. Even without the dutiful Sarah by their side, how is the outcome of this case so far “cold comfort” to Team Price? The radio silence in DC contrasts with their own “summer offensive” in the Sunshine State, independent of that of any electronic surrogates. Disgusting!

  7. susan
    07/13/2011 at 7:51 PM

    Top of his game? Not according to Huffington Post, New York Times, Business Week and Others nwho talk about the stupidity of their latest campaign. Surprised they didn’t tie in the Oreos with this. Got MilkPAP? Maybe with Sarah gone and so much time with the boys, Victor Z. has gotten a bit sexist (if he wasn’t already). Be glad you stayed home, Ms. M.

    Got PMS? New campaign says milk can help with that

    SACRAMENTO, Calif.

    The group that created the “Got Milk?” campaign is back with a new marketing strategy that already is generating plenty of buzz.
    The California Milk Processor Board is encouraging women to drink more milk to fend off the symptoms of premenstrual syndrome.
    The statewide campaign launched this week drew criticism online for ads saying men are the real PMS sufferers as their wives and girlfriends behave strangely every month.
    The campaign’s web site has a color-coded “current global PMS level” and a “mistake verification system” wrapped around pictures of puzzled men.
    The board’s executive director, Steve James, says the Internet, radio and billboard campaign is not meant to offend women but to poke fun at “how clueless men are in dealing with emotional situations.”

    • Clio
      07/13/2011 at 8:33 PM

      Thanks, Susan, for this corrective piece of intelligence. Why does it seem especially appropriate for Mr. Zaborsky to be leading a pitch that tries to laugh at “how clueless men are in dealing with emotional situations?” The whole jist sounds like it’s getting a little too close to home for Vicki, but that’s just me.

    • Bill Orange
      07/14/2011 at 10:03 AM

      Is this for real? I keep waiting for the angry press release saying that this was a huge hoax. I couldn’t come up with something this offensive if I were actively trying to, and I’m the guy who suggested a photo of Victor Zaborsky with a blood mustache and a “got murderer?” caption.

      • Bruce
        07/14/2011 at 5:15 PM

        Bill O:

        I agree with you. It is incredibly sexist and offensive in my opinion and not even funny in the “aren’t we being silly” way.

        I realize that the articles appear to refer to “the group that created the “Got Milk?” campaign” as coming up with this stupid and offensive campaign, but do we know for sure that Victor was in on the loop? Are there any references to him personally as being behind or promoting this campaign personally? Just asking.

        • AnnaZed
          07/14/2011 at 5:50 PM

          I was tempted to mention this odious campaign before but it appears to be the brainchild of the California Milk Processors more noted for their milk from happy California Cows commercials) not the entity that Victor works for, though they might be subgroup or something. Still, though I think Victor is quite possibly guilty of many things I don’t think that he is personally guilty of this particular outrage.

          • AnnaZed
            07/14/2011 at 5:52 PM

            Damn, I did something wrong to that AdWeek link by failing to make a space between the end of the url and the parenthesis that came after. Here is is:

          • susan
            07/14/2011 at 8:17 PM

            Thanks, AnnaZ. I wanted to post something earlier but didn’t have the opportunity. You are right. Cal. is even there in the item I posted. The Cal milk org behind that odious campaign licensed the right for the Got Milk campaign to MilkPep and they may be MilkPEP members (that info. seems to be proprietary despite their being authorized by act of Congress and oversight by USDA). In this case it looks like VZ is innocent of creating the ad.

            • Clio
              07/14/2011 at 10:15 PM

              OMG, Victor is innocent of something: priceless!

              • susan
                07/14/2011 at 10:41 PM

                Please forgive me for this, but…
                still not Price-less.

    • Bea
      07/14/2011 at 9:23 PM

      Wow – this is crazy sexist. And we all know that Victor DOES know the answer to “Chartreuse is a color, right?” Lies, all lies I say!!

  8. susan
    07/13/2011 at 7:58 PM

    BTW, this aggressive milk marketing campaign by MilkPEP is no doubt in response to the Obama Admin’s USDA under Tom Vilsack changing the Food Pyramid to a Food Plate with a glass of milk (i.e., dairy) exiled to the OUTSIDE of the plate. In the pyramid, dairy had a greater role. Now alternatives like almond milk, rice milk, soy milk, etc. have gained a greater market and greater credibility. The Oreo connection, too, is a response to the Obama admin’s health initiative for kids and initiatives to have calories listed on menus, etc. Tres interessant.

    • Clio
      07/13/2011 at 9:39 PM

      Susan, I love milk and Oreo cookies and will continue to consume them with gusto, despite Tom “I fired Shirley Sherrod” Vilsack, Victor “I’m afraid to go downstairs” Zaborsky, and Shaq! With a line-up like that, who needs enemies!

      • susan
        07/13/2011 at 11:58 PM


        It might be getting a little too close to home for V with the clueless ad.

        I know you will continue to enjoy your milk and Oreos no thanks to MilkPep, Tom, or Shaq.

  9. susan
    07/16/2011 at 1:41 PM

    Thought: V. Zaborsky does see a knife in Robert Wone. Otherwise, why/how does he think RW has been stabbed? He doesn’t completely acknowledge seeing a knife, there’s allegedly not a lot of blood on the crime scene (though Joe Price mentions a lot of blood. Why is that? Is it because there was initially and he cleaned it up during his “freak” out?)
    So why does VZ say that he thinks RW has been stabbed? Possible theory: VZ’s screaming begins when JP starts pulling out the knife.

    • Bea
      07/16/2011 at 1:49 PM

      It’s possible but my sense is that Victor screamed when he saw Robert (blood on chest, or knife in chest) and what was THEN a lot more blood, since I hold the opinion that cleaning up took place before the call – maybe it was in process when Victor came downstairs. I absolutely agree that the 911 call shows that Victor is telling what he’s been told to tell and that he messes us a bit by divulging information that appears to be in conflict of what he “saw” (according to Anacostia Dialogs) thus strongly suggesting he was TOLD what to say. Side by side the 911 call transcripts and the AD transcripts don’t line up as to what Victor knew and when.

      • Bruce
        07/16/2011 at 2:51 PM

        Questions and inquiry regarding that 911 call are, of course, fair and legitimate.

        I tend to agree with Alt, however. I know that comes as a big surprise, but hell…

        The big thing for me is that I know very well that 911 calls are recorded. We see it on the news all the time (Listen to the actual 911 call when we come back from commercial break!). JP would know this, and I think the others would too.

        They may have not actually thought about it when they made the call, but if they were to sit down and plan what to say, etc., there is little doubt in my mind that this fact of 911 recordings would be raised by at least one of the “conspirators.”

        JP asking V to ask for the time also comes as no surprise to me. At least around where I live, there have been some lawsuits and accusations of the lateness of ambulances arriving to scenes. I always thought that JP wanted the time for that purpose, so that he could see for himself how long it took. It wasn’t a big deal, but just something he, as a lawyer, would likely ask if an issue of lateness of the ambulance arrival arrived later. This has also made me think that at least JP was not on drugs at the time. He was multi-tasking with his thinking.

        I can understand how people would disagree with my opinions on the 911 call. My opinions are, of course, not infallible in any way. By no means do I feel that I equal the world’s thinking on the matter. Reasonable people can have reasonable differences in opinion on it.

        But I have looked at, listened and pondered that 911 call, and nothing in it –mixed up times, the wording of Victor, etc., has ever hit me as any type of smoking gun evidence of any wrongdoing or guilt of any kind.

        I have always also felt that if Mrs. Wone’s attorneys tried to make too much of a deal of that 911 call, that they might lose some credibility with the jury, or at least one or two people on it. It would be a risk, I think, for Mrs. Wone’s attorneys to go overboard on that call, and if they overdo it, they could actually raise some sympathy for Victor, with at least one or two of the jurors, if not more.

        Just me, and anyone is, of course, invited to disagree with my opinions or anyone’s opinions on this blog.

        • Clio
          07/16/2011 at 6:09 PM

          Why then did Victor’s story and emphases seem to shift after the infamous “Mercedes meeting”, Bruce?

        • Bill Orange
          07/17/2011 at 1:31 PM

          The only things that raised my eyebrows about the 911 call were Victor’s use the word “apparently” (I don’t mean I think it was a smoking gun; I just mean it sounded weird to me.) and the fact that the 911 call makes it sound like Victor is running around getting towels for Joe to staunch Robert’s wounds with, but Joe doesn’t really appear to be doing anything but sitting there when the 911 team arrives (Again, not really a smoking gun–he may have been holding pressure on the wounds at first, and then stopped when he thought Robert was un-savable. This would’ve been a stupid–but understandable–thing to do.).

          As for whether or not Joe Price was on drugs at the time, I really can’t stress enough that this is a very intelligent man who thinks very quickly on his feet and does very well in high-pressure situations. Several people have argued that no one is smart enough to come up with a coherent story like these three have, given the time frame they had to work with. I don’t agree. Joe Price could’ve done it in 15 minutes, even if he were drunk or stoned at the time. I try to refer to him as “self-confident” rather than “cocky”, because for the most part, I think he really is as smart as he thinks he is. The only truly stupid thing that I’ve seen him do in this case is keeping pornographic pictures of himself on his office computer, and the only reason that ended up biting him in the ass was become someone got stabbed in his house. If the Robert Wone case had never happened, I’d bet that Joe would still be at the same law firm, with even more self-porn on his computer.

          • Clio
            07/17/2011 at 9:25 PM

            Just imagine Joe still at Arent Fox: if he did not have the porn on the computer and these charges were still looming, would he have remained as partner?

            Even if he may be just a housefrau in curlers and caftans these days, I wonder what charities and non-profits that he’ll be helping in southern Florida: could he first start with the local LGBT advocacy groups? Would they accept him as is?

            • Bill Orange
              07/18/2011 at 12:21 AM

              I think the porn is what did him in, but the live-in BDSM mistress might have hurt him at the firm, too. The triple combo there is going to hurt your image. A mistress wouldn’t hurt him, nor would a BDSM interest by themselves, but the combo and the live-in status are just too much. It’s too close to polygamy, which is still a big taboo.

        • Craig
          07/19/2011 at 10:40 AM

          Bruce – I think you’re among the minority of those who feel Zaborsky’s 911 call was genuine and didn’t reflect coaching ahead of time. You assume it could be risky for the plaintiff in front of the jury, but many feel just the opposite – it could close the deal for them.

          • 07/19/2011 at 11:57 AM

            Craig, I agree with you. People on here don’t always agree.

            It is just my opinion that I was expressing as to the 911 call. Anyone and everyone can disagree or agree.

            Because I hold an opinion on something does not mean that I expect or assume that others have it. I don’t presume to have the answers to the mysteries of this case. I am trying to keep an open mind.

            A majority opinion does not mean anything to me if it differs with my personal analysis. The majority could be wrong, or the majority could be right, when it comes to opinions.

            • Bill Orange
              07/19/2011 at 2:09 PM

              I honestly go back and forth on the 911 call. Sometimes I think it was a faked dramatization on Victor’s part. Other times I think that Victor is just a garden-variety drama queen, and that’s about what you’d expect to hear him sound like. This is a man who, consciously or unconsciously, gets himself into situations that are very likely to lead to drama, such as letting your partner’s BDSM buddy move into the house, or returning from a business trip unannounced, apparently in the hopes of finding something to make a stink about.

              • AnnaZed
                07/19/2011 at 2:31 PM

                My reaction to Victor’s 911 call is not really an either/or thing. I think that he is genuinely horrified, frightened and despairing. I also think that he is absolutely controlled in his life with Joe and that he did in fact conspire from the very beginning to misrepresent the facts surrounding Robert’s murder. I hear him using distancing language like apparently and I hear him awkwardly inserting improbable (I would call impossible) elements into what he tells the 911 operator. It was quite cagy of Joe to have him make this call, and I think that Joe considered that Victor’s impassioned hysteria would be the most plausible.

                • Alternateguy
                  07/19/2011 at 3:43 PM


                  I fully agree with your first statement.

                  But, then, your logic escapes me.

                  I, for one, when I hear someone say apparently in describing something rather unbelievable that has happened, I simply put that down to their attempt to be accurate and honest in their statement involving something quite unbelievable that seems to have, in actuality, happened. As imposable as it seems, it appears to be true

                  So, as to Joe’s behavior, what do you think that Joe should have said/done?

                  “Victor, (You hysterical and not so close friend of the victim,) help Robert if you can, while I call 911.”

                  That, quite frankly, doesn’t begin to work for me. Just sayin’.

              • mw
                07/19/2011 at 3:47 PM

                “returning from a business trip unannounced, apparently in the hopes of finding something to make a stink about.”

                I bet that was the last time he did that!

                • 07/19/2011 at 4:21 PM

                  You have to admit that these fun imaginings would make a great soap opera.

                  • Alternateguy
                    07/19/2011 at 9:36 PM

                    Take out the word Soap and insert Grand.

                • susan
                  07/19/2011 at 9:42 PM

                  You’re probably right, mw. According to his own testimony he called JP en route from his shortened trip. And that night Robert Wone was murdered.

                  What I’d like to know is if they lock the doors at their Miami hideaway. And if they have a back porch area. And spiders.

                  I’d also like to know if D. Ward has a separate “studio” or if the massage “studio” is his room. He is still posted in Masseurfinder, and I think some of the pages there have been updated. I could be wrong. He advertises “scrubs” now and a price list for services. Don’t recall that from before or maybe I never noticed.

                  • Bill 2
                    07/19/2011 at 11:38 PM

                    Susan, They have a pool and pool deck out back and the rear entrance to the garage. There is a driveway through the center of the block so that homeowners park in the rear of their homes instead of out front on the street.

                    I haven’t been there, but when the address appeared in some court papers, I just put it into Google and got an airview photo of the whole area. You could zoom in. It looked as if the entire rear area of their home is blocked from view of the neighbors by the garage in the rear and the high fence around the pool deck.

                    South Florida doesn’t have a lot of spiders but there are plenty of really big palmetto bugs down there.

  10. Clio
    07/17/2011 at 10:29 AM

    Well, here it is, nearly five years after 08/02, and no one has been (or probably will be) charged for/in Robert’s murder. And, that’s what Mr. Price probably hoped for at Anacostia.

    On the other hand, Victor’s card to Joe that year (2006) wondered where their relationship would be five years down the road — has anything changed on that front with the trio reassembled in a less elegant, if possibly more spacious, home, far from the DC spotlight? Will they marry in lovely and historic Hyde Park, New York, not far from Lil Dyl’s cooking school? And, will Dyl help to write their tell-even-less work, Why We Did Not Do It, with Harper-Collins?

    Also, with no alt dot bomb ads and with Dyl’s erotica collection still in police hands, how is Joe faring on a more uxorious and even monastic diet? Is Dyl steering to him any especially friendly customers? Given the relatively soft landings for all of the trouple’s members, one’s mind may still be doing the Virginia reel!

    • susan
      07/17/2011 at 12:16 PM

      Hi Clio,

      Somehow I imagine V didn’t anticipate that Dyl would still be in the picture five years later. They were “working on” becoming a family according to V’s transcript from police. Have they achieved that? I’m sure one thing that displeases them is the distance from the children they helped to father. That must be hard. On the other hand, re alt substitutes and actual eyecandy, I’m sure there is no dearth in Miami. Could they all be sick to death of seeing each other day after day after day? Is Dyl’s digs in the Miami retreat another sardine can? Is he holed in their with New Yorkers penning a Won’t Tell All? You’ve got me thinking and my mind Virginia-reeling!

      Meanwhile, the Wone family could use good friends, real friends, to help them bring RW’s murderer to justice and bring them some peace.

    • 07/18/2011 at 11:46 AM

      Well, here it is nearly five years after 08/02, and no one has come up with a coherent story without reasonable doubt as to any of the Swann 3’s guilt criminally, or any of the Swann 3’s responsibility per a preponderence of the evidence civilly.

      But I could be wrong here, of course. Maybe someone does have a coherent story without reasonable doubt as to what happened between the time Robert Wone first appeared at the house and the police arrived.

      Remember, in the recent Casey Anthony case, the criminal jury put the burden of proof on the prosecution, as they should, and they wanted to hear HOW and WHY as to the death of the little girl. They didn’t get it and acquitted. They did not find Casey Anthony innocent. Virtually all the jurors who have spoken have indicated that the prosecution did not answer the HOW and WHY for them to find Casey Anthony guilty of the felony charges, including murder, and without that, they felt they could not convict someone.

      So, can anyone give us the HOW and the WHY regarding the Wone murder?

      Could anyone who has a firm belief in what happened between the time Robert Wone appeared at Swann St. and the police arrived, please leave a post that captures it for us? If you could provide it in chronological order, it might be helpful.

      I promise to not abuse anyone who at least attempts to provide us with what actually happened between the time Robert Wone arrived and the police arrived. I may disagree, but will do so respectfully, as I hope all will do, to anyone who takes the challenge.

      • Bill 2
        07/18/2011 at 11:54 AM

        Why don’t you just go and drink your wine coolers with the trio in Miami Shores. They’ll be happy to provide you with plenty of information about exactly what happened.

        • 07/18/2011 at 12:43 PM

          Bill 2, why don’t you give us the HOW and the WHY, with what you believe happened in chronological order, from the time Robert Wone came to the Swann Street address, and the time the police arrived?

          I just want to hear one coherent story that can make some sense. You have followed this case for a long time, Bill 2. Please help us understand what happened at Swann St., and how it happened and why. WMRW?

          I have absolutely no connection with the Swann 3. I am a free agent. I don’t know any of the Swann 3 or anyone who has met them. I know of no one who has any connection, other than those on here that have so stated they have met them or friends of theirs. I am just an attorney in Illinois who is into true crime investigations and who is fascinated with this case.

          As I hope you can tell from my posts, my only true bias is that I do not believe that the Swann 3 have to prove their innocence, either criminally or civilly. The burden is on the prosecution to prove a criminal case, and the burden is on Mrs. Wone’s attorneys to prove a civil case. That is the law. I’m not making that up.

          Despite the claims of conspiracy and people being apologists, I have no dog in this fight and have never communicated with anyone else on this blog outside of posting (Full disclosure: I have had a few e-mail communications with the editors over time, mostly about articles for the blog).

          In addition to my feelings on burden of proof, I also have a strong feeling for fairness. If you review my posts, I think that you will find that I rarely if ever write a tough post to someone who hasn’t written tough themselves, usually something quite unfair and underhanded in my opinion.

          If someone says something on here that I feel is unfair, I usually speak up. I understand that my grasp of fairness may not be everyone’s or even the majority on here. Sorry about that.

          I realize that the majority of people on here don’t really consider fairness for the Swann 3 as a concern worth having, they want fairness only for Robert Wone and Mrs. Wone.

          I understand that fully….it is natural. It does not, I believe, bring out the best angels in ourselves, but it is the way of the world.

          My difference with some of the most vocal posters on here is that I want fairness for everyone, and fairness can easily be applied to everyone.

          It is a falicy that to show fairness to your opposing side somehow weakens your argument. To me, that fairness adds to your credibility, and the cheap shots against the Swann 3 here do not help the poster’s credibiility at all to me.

          There is absolutely no reason why people can’t try to be fair to all involved here.

          The seeming fact that so many of the vocal posters on here seem to think that any fairness to all undercuts their authority or credibilty “for their side” is all a bunch of silliness to me, and really counter-intuitive. But it is human nature, I think, and not in its best mode.

          It would certainly raise a number of poster’s credibility, in my view to show fairness to both sides of the arguments.

          I personally have the opinion that the Swann 3 are most likely responsible for the death of Robert Wone. I don’t have the opinion that anyone else murdered Robert Wone. But I do believe that all possibilities should be considered. All possiblities. If I was on the jury, I would place the burden on the prosecution or Mrs. Wone’s attorneys to prove their case. Which is the law.

          As to HOW and WHY the Swann 3 are responsible, I just don’t have a clue. None of the explanations I have heard seem credible to me.

          I can have the personal opinion that the Swann 3 were somehow involved in the murder and still try to follow all leads, all possibilities. It is a bizarre case and its truth, as others including Cat have suggested, may be on the bizarre side.

          Thanks for suggesting that I visit the Swann 3 and have a drink with them in Florida, Bill 2.

          While I am sure that could be interesting, I have no burning desire to do so, unless I could get some info from them about Robert Wone’s murder.

          I do doubt they would invite a stranger from Illinois into their Florida house such as myself. I doubt I would be their cup of tea, so to speak.

          If I told them I post on WMRW, I’m certain they would not let me in!

          • mw
            07/18/2011 at 4:09 PM

            One of the toughest things for us humans to accept is that there’s some things that we’ll just never know the truth about, and this is one of those things. We understand that, we just really can’t accept it without taking what we do know and trying to make some conclusions. I don’t think that’s necessarily unfair or anything, its just a part of who we are. Burdens of proof and presumptions of innocence are critical and necessary steps above all that, but at the same time – if someone gets murdered in your house and there’s no obvious explanation – you have some societal duties and burdens against you as well.

            It’s not unfair at all, and its certainly not un-expected, for these guys to be labeled, if not necessarily as “murderers”, as “those guys who are covering up the truth of what happened when that guy was killed in their house.” That’s the bed they made. The courts can’t punish them for that but society can and will. We’ve been trained over the years not to cooperate with criminal authorities and to clutch the 5th amendment like its a life raft – and while those are great strategies to avoid criminal liability…those same strategies do not match up with our deeper soceital needs for the truth, and for accountability. That conflict doesn’t bother me at all and I don’t think its unfair – but it’s reality for these guys for the rest of their lives.

            • 07/18/2011 at 6:09 PM

              Hi nw:

              Thank you for your post.

              You are right, of course. There are societal duties and expectations as well as criminal and civil procedural duties and expectations.

              As an attorney, I tend to look more to the latter rather than the former, and maybe that is not truely realistic under the circumstances of this brutal crime.

              Yet, I am concerned about the de-humanizing of both the defendants and anyone who knows them, which we see sometimes in posts on this blog.

              Nations at war, including the U.S., de-humanize the enemy so that soldiers can more easily shoot the enemy dead, giving the enemy hames and painting them in broad strokes, as less than us. Not really human.

              Nancy Grace does the same thing now when she calls Casey Anthony “Tot Mom,” rather than her name. She wants to de-humanize Casey Anthony so that she is less than human. It justifies many of the things Grace is saying about her post-trial (to much criticism, truth be told).

              I just think we are more likely to reach some answers or come to some worthy conclusions (like a clear chronology of the How and Why of Robert Wone’s death from the moment he entered Swann St. until the police arrived), if we can look at everything more objectively, without doing an “us” and “them” war, without de-humanizing and demeaning them or anyone who tries to look at it objectively.

              You feel that it is ok for us to refer to the defendants as “those guys who are covering up the truth.” I differ. Before I accuse someone of covering up the truth, I want to know the truth so that I can compare it to what they are saying and have said.

              I don’t know the truth. I don’t even know a plausible story of how and why the murder happened. I have been asking for a plausible story.

              It is legitimate to say: we don’t know the truth because the defendants (or Sarah, or friends or family of the defendants) won’t tell the truth. I understand that argument.

              But no one has come up with a plausible story so that I can reach a conclusion that they are definately covering up the truth.

              I am all ears.

              But while we differ, I appreciate and respect your thoughts and your post in this regard.

              • Bea
                07/18/2011 at 7:05 PM

                Hi mw and Bruce,

                Nice discussion. I tend to agree with mw here (not surprisingly) for a host of reasons, not the least of which is, in the simplest terms, that the defendants can’t have their cake and eat it too – more specifically that they can’t NOT answer even basic discovery and say “unfair” if people refer to them as the guys who won’t say what happened in their house that night.

                I’ve been criticized for being a lawyer who is willing to state an opinion even though I’m not anyone’s lawyer in this matter. I’m a person on a public blog with an opinion and my profession is secondary to that. I’ve taken a few hits because I’m a lawyer – all fair game.

                To me, it’s not a court of law here – here is where we try out theories of what happened to Robert Wone. There is no BARD here, nor even preponderance of the evidence. We’re working from common sense, not whether they’d be convicted in a court of law – clearly for the past charges, Judge L found them “not guilty” and I’ve always been one to saw that verdict must be respected.

                But it doesn’t change my mind about what the defendants have in their power to change: tell what happened or people will assume the most logical. A man was murdered in their home with three methodical stab wounds. Nothing validates their theory that an unknown intruder entered their home (other than each other’s account) and when asked even basic questions, they take the 5th. I won’t bore everyone with my litany of what I think of as damning “evidence” (not even of the courtroom variety) – for me, the defendants can’t expect anyone (other than their loved ones) to essentially just believe their silence. “Just trust me” doesn’t work for me. This, of course, is one woman’s opinion.

                • 07/19/2011 at 12:33 PM

                  Hi Bea:

                  You say:

                  “To me, it’s not a court of law here – here is where we try out theories of what happened to Robert Wone.”

                  You have been on here since the beginning, right?

                  Can you give us your theory of what happened to Robert Wone from the moment he entered the Swann St. house until the police entered the same?

                  I absolutely promise that I will not raise even the fact that you are an attorney, and will not attack anyone for their opinion or guess in this regard.

                  We all understand that this would involve guess and speculation.

                  I may disagree, but I will do so respectfully. Promise.

              • Craig
                07/19/2011 at 10:50 AM

                Bruce – The only people who can offer a chronology that isn’t based on guesswork are the three defendants, and the consensus seems to be what they did say to police on the night of the murder doesn’t and never will add up.

                • 07/19/2011 at 11:50 AM

                  No, I understand that, Craig. I hope you don’t think that I am stupid.

                  I was just curious if anyone had a firm opinion or guess of what “went down” between the time Robert Wone entered the house and the time the police arrived. In other words, a general theory of How and Why this murder happened.

                  If everyone is sure that the Swann 3 are lying, and what they say to police on the night of the murder doesn’t and never will add up, tell us the “truth” as you see it, so we can compare it to the lies, as people surmise the evidence after all these years.

                  I realize this could produce some unlikely scenarios, and that it is just speculation and guess.

                  My post made it clear that no one should be attacked as to their speculation and guess, but it could produce some interesting scenarios for all of us to consider.

                  It could give some of us, including me, a lot to think about, and could assist all in coming to an answer of WMRW.

                  Again, this should not be an opportunity for ridicule, and there can be polite discussion and disagreement.

                  Again, if we are so sure that the Swann 3 were lying to the police, just set forth a scenario that shows they were lying.

                  After all these years, and all the evidence, that should not be difficult, especially for the old timers here.

                  • Bea
                    07/19/2011 at 12:48 PM

                    I’ve made my personal speculation public before – can do so again if you like. My guess is that CDinDC was correct, that Robert Wone was stabbed in the bathroom and bled out in the tub (and the killer was smart enough to wipe the drain lip). If you like I can tell you who I think is most likely the killer and why but it’s absolutely nothing more than speculation with an eye to explaining all the “details” of facts-as-we-know-them.

                    Let me know if you want it again.

                  • Bea
                    07/19/2011 at 9:23 PM

                    Still happy to provide it. Please don’t pretend it wasn’t offered.

                    • 07/20/2011 at 10:51 AM

                      Hi Bea:

                      Yes, please.

          • Clio
            07/18/2011 at 10:57 PM

            Oh please, Bruce, you grossly underestimate the trouple’s tolerance for the kindness of strangers; I’m sure that Dyl has met many tourists from Illinois on his daily rounds of mercy, and, if you did visit the Triple Entente but did not overstay your welcome with a sleepover, then I’m sure that a resurgent Victor might delight in someone with equivalent verbal and acting skills.

            • 07/19/2011 at 12:20 PM

              Dear Clio:

              Ok, you have convinced me. But can I stay in a hotel please, maybe art deco?

              For displaying our acting skills, as you suggest, Victor and I can do “two Grecian urns” in the garden at 3:00.

              With your connections, please set it up and I will get the plane tickets.

              Maybe, just maybe, they will tell me something about the crime that will blow apart the entire case or bury them before the first juror is seated!

      • Bill Orange
        07/18/2011 at 5:49 PM

        “Well, here it is nearly five years after 08/02, and no one has come up with a coherent story without reasonable doubt as to any of the Swann 3’s guilt criminally, or any of the Swann 3’s responsibility per a preponderence of the evidence civilly.”

        If I’m allowed to draw an adverse inference from a fifth amendment invocation, and the defendant invokes the fifth amendment on a question that pertains directly to their liability in a civil claim, then I would say that the plaintiff has met the standard of “preponderance of the evidence”. Those are the two key differences, in my mind, between the criminal trial and the civil one: (1) Adverse inference from a fifth amendment invocation and (2) a lower burden of proof. Frankly, in a situation like this, if a civil defendant invoked their fifth amendment rights on a question pertaining directly to the civil claim (e.g., “Did you kill Robert Wone?”), I’d say the plaintiff has conclusively met her burden of proof, and the only way I that would find for the defendant is if it could proven that it was simply impossible for them to have committed the offense at the heart of the suit. (As a rather absurd example, I’d find for the defendants if they invoked their fifth amendment rights when asked if they were involved in the shooting of Abraham Lincoln, but I’d find for the plaintiffs if they invoked those same rights when asked if they were involved in the shooting of Ronald Reagan. And at the conclusion of both trials, I’d tell the defendants that their lawyers were morons, and they really should sue them for incompetence.) I wouldn’t need a coherent story or a motive. All I would need to know is that (a) Robert Wone was stabbed to death, and (b) the defendants are invoking their fifth amendment rights when asked if they did it. That’s really all I need to know to render a judgement here.

        The legal strategy for the defense appears to be to argue that they’re not really invoking their fifth amendment rights because they’re guilty, but rather because their lawyers (who, gosh darn it, just haven’t gotten around to asking their clients exactly what happened that night) have advised them that they’re in danger of prosecution EVEN IF THEY’RE INNOCENT AND ANSWER HONESTLY. I really can’t see a jury buying this. I also don’t think a jury is going to believe that the DC police specifically targeted these three men because of their unusual lifestyle. I think a jury would conclude that it was really the body in the bedroom that got the police involved. I’m sure that the defense will make the police incompetence an issue (and if they’re billing by the hour, they could rack up some major bucks here), but a body plus a fifth amendment invocation relating to your responsibility for that body is STILL all I would need to find for Kathy Wone.

        As for the bizarro ruling (the written ruling, not the actual verdicts) in the criminal trial, I think that there’s no way that the defense will be able to introduce the fact that their clients were acquitted of all criminal charges without having the plaintiff introduce Judge Leibovitz’s written ruling, which was totally illogical but also quite damning of the defendants. (I think a big part of her motivation for writing it was to prevent a malicious prosecution suit and to prevent the defendants from publicly claiming vindication.)

        Now let me throw your question back at you: Based on the ability to draw an adverse inference from a fifth amendment invocation, and the lower burden of proof for the plaintiff, how could you NOT rule for the plaintiff in this case?

        • 07/18/2011 at 7:13 PM

          Hi Bill O:

          I guess it is possible for a juror to follow the judge’s instructions and find a preponderence of evidence for Mrs. Wone’s civil case simply by (1) considering the fact that someone was stabbed in their house, and (2) by virtue of adverse inferences from 5th Amendment usage by all defendants.

          I’m not sure I could find a preponderence of the evidence in favor of the plaintiff’s case by those 2 things alone, but maybe I could if I was actually in the jury box, and dependent upon the actual jury instructions, evidence and attorneys’ arguments.

          Although it is a civil case only, I would be very disappointed as a juror if Mrs. Wone’s attorneys did not set forth some reasonable or plausible explanation of the How and Why of Robert Wone’s death.

          Preponderence of the evidence does not mean who has the most evidence. It is not just a matter of scale: who has the biggest stack of evidence. Evidence, of course, differs in importance, significance and relevance. Before I found someone responsible for paying millions of dollars, I do think I would want more than the fact of the death and simply inferences, but that is just me.

          If Mrs. Wone’s attorneys were buying that theory of winning, I don’t think they would necessarily want to settle now, since the civil trial would be just a slam/dunk.

          I have never thought or expressed that I thought the civil trial would be a slam/dunk, but your post has got me cogitating.

          Of course, we are no closer to the truth of what actually happened at the Swann St. house if that occurs.

          Thanks for your post. You have given me some things to think more about.

          • Clio
            07/18/2011 at 9:14 PM

            And, to Bill O’s two points above, add our own “third” — namely, Bruce, that there was no intruder who intruded that night. There is absolutely nothing that points to a back-door man. Even Lynn discerned this. Now, Michael and/or Scott could have disposed of the really naughty stuff (cameras, play mats, etc.), but the three could have done so as well. So, given a mortally wounded guest and the Triple Entente all taking the 5th, add the fact that only the three most probably were in that house with Robert that night. Game, set, match to Covington!

            • 07/19/2011 at 12:26 PM

              Fine, there was no intruder who intruded that night. Let’s assume for a moment that this opinion is a fact.

              Since there was no intruder, then give a plausible story of what happened that night and how and why Robert Wone was murdered by one or more of the Swann 3.

              You have been on this blog since the beginning. You know all the evidence. Since there was no intruder, what happened, in your opinion, from the time Robert Wone entered the Swann St. house until the police entered the same.

              • 07/19/2011 at 12:39 PM

                Clio, I assumed that when you posted “no intruder who intruded,” you meant anyone other than the Swann 3.

                But you may have meant there was no person who was not invited there that night.

                Which would certainly not limit a theory to one or more of the Swann 3, as I wrongly suggested in my post above.

          • Bill Orange
            07/19/2011 at 12:57 AM

            If I were the plaintiff’s attorney, my closing argument to you would begin: “I wish I could give you a reasonable and plausible explanation of the how and why of Robert Wone’s death, but I can’t do that, because the defendants have refused to answer over 400 questions about how and why things happened the way that they did that evening. You can, and should, draw more than 400 adverse inferences from these refusals.” I would then point out that the defendants were into some pretty kinky behavior, as evidenced by exhibits 1-238 (ballpark guess, and it’s probably low), which demonstrate interests in (a) restraints, (b) violent sexual behavior, and (c) a search for new sex partners.

            I can understand not meeting the burden of proof in a criminal trial. I can’t see not meeting it in a civil trial. Here, the reason there’s no narrative is simply because the defendants are refusing to provide one, and that fact can and should be held against them.

            • 07/19/2011 at 12:13 PM

              Hi Bill O:

              Great post and great Opening Statement. I have to look at actual jury instructions on adverse inferences from raising the 5th, to be sure, but I think the instruction usually says you “may” consider adverse inferences, rather than “shall.” What the defendants’ attorneys could do with that is anyone’s guess. I don’t think that “may” (if it is in the instruction!), will be ignored by the defendants’ counsel or the plaintiff’s counsel, and gives an opportunity for some great lawyering by all at the civil trial (if we have one).

              My point, and it is just my opinion, is that if Mrs. Wone’s attorneys just paint a picture of how “bad” these defendants are, and their private lives and sexual histories are put on display for the jury, and they rely then solely on adverse inferences, without any plausible theory of the crime, that one or two people on the jury may be demanding some hint of “how” and “why,” before finding against the defendants.

              I personally think that it is dangerous for Mrs. Wone’s attorneys not to have a plausible “theory” of the case [much like what I am requesting in other posts under this article], being a theory of what happened at Swann St. Again, it may just be one or two jurors who may have a demand to know the “theory” of the case. But their decision must be unanimous.

              These are all just my opinions. Your opinion that the civil case is a slam/dunk is not something that I am ridiculing or protesting in any way. I think your opinion is a valid one, and reasonable minds can clearly differ on these issues.

              • Bill Orange
                07/19/2011 at 2:27 PM

                My biggest problem with coming up with a plausible theory of this case is that there are already so many “knowns” that I would’ve thought were totally implausible.

                Robert Wone agreed to spend the night with his old college friend Joe Price, a man who was supposedly in a committed relationship with another man and happened to have two additional housemates. He ended up getting stabbed to death.

                It turns out that one of the housemates was a live-in sex slave for Joe Price, and this situation was both known to and tolerated by his partner. I would’ve considered that to be implausible. The live-in sex slave told Victor’s best friend that he thought Joe would dump Victor for him. Implausible. Joe Price–a highly-intelligent attorney–kept BDSM photographs OF HIMSELF on his office computer. Implausible. Robert Wone was stabbed three times with no evidence of movement or resistance against his attacker. Implausible. The police were so breathtakingly incompetent that they managed to mangle almost every piece of evidence in the case. Implausible.

                If and when the true story of that night ever comes out, I’m fairly certain that it won’t be described as “plausible”. What we know already is stranger than fiction, and I would imagine that whatever the defendants are hiding is more bizarre, not less, than what we already know.

                • Alternateguy
                  07/19/2011 at 3:56 PM

                  Bill O,

                  Yes, indeed. I agree with much you have said.

                  But let us not forget that the defendants did come up with something, which they have never hidden. And that is their certain view that an unknown outside intruder did the deed.

                  And, yes, that fit’s your theory. It is more bizarre, not less, than what we think we know. And so most posters here discount it out of hand.

                  (Seems to me.)

                • 07/19/2011 at 4:11 PM

                  Thanks, Bill O.

                  You do set forth a lot of “implausible” knowns, and it is good to see a good number of them listed in one post.

                  We are dealing with a lot of “implausibles” which we accept as knowns now.

                  I guess one concern I have is why so many vocal posters on here are so quick to dispel or reject any whisper of an unknown intruder, which is also “implausible” in much the same way as our “implausible” knowns you mention.

                  Any hint of that theory results in claims of “impossible” and great derision and rejection.

                  Yet, isn’t it another “implausible”in a sea of implausibles?

                  As I have said before, I don’t personally believe in the intruder theory. But I’m not scared to discuss it or whisper its name. Unless someone can show me that it is impossible, it will remain in my brain cells. Far-fetched, unusual, implausible: I agree. Yet, why do we treat this implausible as something so less than all the implausible knowns we know, as referenced in your post?

                  It has always been a mystery to me why so many on this blog take this position. It is the theory that must not be named, it seems.

                  Seems a funny way to try to solve a murder to ignore any implausible theory in this case of implausible knowns. As long as it is not impossible.

                  Almost a year ago, I suggested a “game” of someone coming up with evidence which shows that it was “impossible” for there to be an intruder. In other words, what evidence is there that would make it an impossibility, rather than an implausibility (think I just made up a word there)?

                  As I recall, the responses did not show evidence of any “impossibility” of there being an intruder, although a number of people correctly pointed out that “impossible” is not the proper test, and just because it might be not impossible, did not make it plausible that there was an intruder.

                  However, a number of posters, including a number of old timers, derided even the suggestion, as if mentioning an intruder might cause a sacred cow to bleed.

                  Of course, a number of the old timers stated their moral outrage that I would refer to anything in relation to this case as a “game.”

                  Funny how the article previous to this one had the word “game” in it, “Party Games,” and not one person made a peep about the use of the word “game” in the title and in the article.

                  I guess the moral outrage was dependent upon who was typing the word “game.”

                  [For those interested in reading the string of posts on this “intruder/impossible game”, it starts under the article “DW VCB Part 2 of 3″ 08/05/2010 by Craig” at my post thereunder at:

                  [Bruce on 08/06/2010 at 3:33 pm].

                  For those interested in viewing the “moral outrage” expressed at my mere use of the word “game” in those posts, to compare it to the lack of such responses to the recent “Party Games” article where there was not a peep of protest at the use of the word “game,” please see, also under the: “DW VCB Part 2 of 3” Article 08/05/2010 by Craig:

                  [AnnaZed on 08/07/2010 at 10:03 pm]

                  [Susan on 08/06/2010 at 11:39 pm]

                  [Bea on 08/08/2010 at 9:48 pm] and

                  [AnnaZed on 08/08/2010 at 12:06 am]

                  So, why the sacred cow to not whisper the intruder theory?

                  • 07/19/2011 at 4:19 PM


                    Looks like we were typing at the same time with the same essential argument!

                    I’m sure that we two may be on an island as to the intruder theory.

                    My point is that there are some crazy things about the intruder theory, no doubt. But not much crazier than any other theory as to this case, in my book.

                  • AnnaZed
                    07/19/2011 at 4:41 PM

                    Wow, that was neat, revisiting that conversation.

                    Bruce, you might have done well to revisit my advice to alternateguy on that thread:

                    By the way, are you familiar with the positions in a Transactional Analysis Karpman Drama Triangle? So far I have seen you adopt all three personae (in your post above you are “the victim”). To transcend the cycle represented by the triangle it is important to learn that all three positions are false.

                  • Alternateguy
                    07/19/2011 at 4:50 PM


                    One of the very biggest flags to me has always been the “lost” or miss-handled Blackberry.

                    The victim’s last words, for God’s sake!

                    There are whole treatises written on the subject of recovering information from digital devices, including Blackberries. Though information may be deleted or altered, it is still often recoverable.

                    And if someone besides Robert fooled with the device why wasn’t it fingerprinted?

                    I, for one, seldom think that things happen by accident.

                    Something stinks to high heaven. (Just sayin’.)

                    • Hoya Loya
                      07/19/2011 at 5:17 PM

                      And your point is? We know there were two unsent messages: one saying “Good night” to Kathy and one making lunch plans with a friend. These were not preserved. And no, we don’t know who wrote them, although Judge L. concluded it was Robert.

                      All of Robert’s other emails were preserved.

                      Nobody, not even the defendants, have ever suggested that there is any cause to believe anything conspiratorial in nature regarding the failure to image the BlackBerry and preserve these two messages.

                      Shit happens. And in this case, lots of it.

                      Bruce is trying to keep us focused on the facts relevant to the intruder vs. other theories. The government lost the tampering, obstruction and conspiracy trial, so the only thing relevant about the BlackBerry at this point is that it contained two unsent, non-germane messages for which any theory must account. Don’t take us off on yet another tangent.

                    • Alternateguy
                      07/19/2011 at 6:52 PM

                      Hoya, Since Robert’s last transmission was at 11:08 p.m. And then he appearently composed two unsenttransmissions, which must have taken him, say two minutes total, and the 911 call was known to have taken place at 11:49, then that means that the whole crime thing would have taken place in thirty-nine minutes. Clearly an impossible amount of time to conduct the drug injecting, rape, electroejaculating, seameninsertting, stabbing, knife-swapping, washing, drying, story management, cameraremovel, rehearsing that has been suggested of the triple.

                      If we take what is known of the Blackberry evidence on it’s face, then we have to agree that only the stealthy intruder would have had the time to do his thing, not the others.

                      You can just say “Shit happens,” about the loss of solid Blackberry evidence. But, that evidence was evidence that, as far as we know, pointed clearly away from the three suspects.

                      We don’t have any evidence to the contrary, reguarding the Blackberry.
                      While you may say, Shit happens, I often say, “Isn’t it funny how much evidence gets convenientlylossed when it is evidence likely to embarrass the authorities.”

                    • Hoya Loya
                      07/20/2011 at 9:35 AM

                      No Alt — Judge L. mistakenly referenced an 11:08 transmission when 11:08 was actually the time stamp on the last unsent draft.

                      And given that we don’t know, and due to the screw-up never will know, who wrote the drafts, it is possible that there was a much longer time frame involved.

                  • Hoya Loya
                    07/19/2011 at 5:01 PM

                    AltGuy and Bruce:

                    The intruder theory is just that. It is based on reports by the defendants, that cannot, evidently, be independently corroborated, that they left the back door unlocked and heard a chime or chimes. It is also based on their assertion that Robert was their friend and that they never could have killed him.

                    As with the other “verboten” theory here, “Robert was on the DL and died by accident and/or in an encounter with a trick,” I’ll be glad to give it renewed serious consideration when new supporting evidence turns up (alarm company records? neighborhood crime logs? new eyewitnesses?).

                    The theories that someone in the house did it are indeed based on established facts, many of them enumerated by Bill O. above, not just self-serving statements. And, since no eyewitness to the stabbing or any alleged cover-up has come forward, and given the endless police screwups, any case built on those otherwise implausible facts would necessarily be circumstantial. I know you agree that there is probably not enough circumstantial evidence at this point to make a strong case in a court of law and that is likely why no murder charges have been filed to date.

                    But there is some circumstantial, if implausible, evidence, independently corroborated, which is more evidence than there is of an intruder, accident or trick.

                    The intruder theory is a defense, not an explanation in itself. It serves to create reasonable doubt or offset the preponderance of evidence standard, depending on the effectiveness of the case presented. Around the close of the prosecution’s case, I posted a comment to the effect of “The defendants say an intruder came in and killed their friend. Has the prosecution established that this cannot be true?” Judge L., correctly or incorrectly, decided it was not true. But also determined that though the intruder theory failed, even as a defense, that no case had been made against any one of the individuals. I think what many here are trying to do, in the wake of that trial, is find a way to crack that nut.

                    So if I’m speculating or trying to crack the case, as opposed to prosecuting, I’m going to concentrate on the theory with the best leads, though keeping an open mind for evidence that might justify a new spotlight elsewhere.

                    And we do know this: Robert showed up at Swann Street at about 10:30 and that by 11:54 he was near death from three neat clean stab wounds, evidently from a knife from the defendants’ kitchen, with little external bleeding, his mouth guard in place, his own semen on and in his body, broken blood vessels in his eyes, several unexplained needle marks in odd places, posed in the same manner as Shakespeare in an illustration from a magazine found in the bedroom across the hall and two drafted but unsent messages on his BlackBerry.

                    Coming up with an explanation for an intruder theory that fits these facts is, IMHO, even more difficult than crafting an explanation that someone in the house is responsible.

                    • 07/19/2011 at 5:08 PM

                      Oh, Hiya Hoya.

                      I would certainly agree with you that it is a lot easier to blame it on one or more of the Swann 3, than an intruder.

                      However, what makes you, or anyone, think that the answer to the how and why of RobertWone’smurder is going to be easy or the easy one?

                    • Hoya Loya
                      07/19/2011 at 5:22 PM


                      Obviously, after five years, whatever the answer is, it is not easy!

                      Just pointing out that just s you say you haven’t seen a convincing argument that one of the three did it, I have seen even fewer arguments that an intruder did it while accounting for all the facts. Not opining on which is more likely.

                    • Alternateguy
                      07/19/2011 at 5:51 PM


                      I truly wish to avoid crafting any story.

                      Any suggestion I may make is, and always has been, just speculation regarding any intruder.

                      I know of no facts.

                      Except that huge mistakes and errors were apparently made in the investigation as conducted by one of our nation’s major municipalities, and with the close help of both the FBI and the SecretService. (This time, the US Park Service wasn’tinvolved.)

                      However, what bothers me on this blog is that statements are made that seem to exaggerate the known or reported facts regarding the household situation.

                      For instance you use the expression “…posed in the same manner as Shakespeare.”in discussing the New Yorkerpicture. I have read nothing to the fact that Robert Wone was lying at an extreme angle, as was Shakespeare. Just what do you and other posters mean when you say “posed in the same manner?” I do know that others have said that, repeatedly, but they don’t specify how this is true.

                      As you know, one poster even went so far as to say that the Shakespeare picture had a knife sticking out of him.

                      Something, which you yourself, took the time to point out as a falsehood.

                    • Craig
                      07/22/2011 at 12:27 PM

                      Do your Goddamn homework Alt. You “have read nothing to the fact that Robert Wone was lying at an extreme angle, as was Shakespeare.” Try reading the Ward affidavit (page 11, paragraph 2) – the Rosetta Stone of the investigation: “… a full-page drawing of William Shakespeare lying dead in bed: His body is shown positioned to the way Mr. Wone’s body was positioned when it was found.”

                      I’m old enough to remember the Church hearings and I (and many others) still find your assassin ‘theory’ laughable. And you compound that fantasy by suggesting Robert would go to Price for counsel rather than someone like Eric Holder. Give it the fuck up already. This case is a mystery, not delusional, truther fan fic – it’s an insult to Robert’s memory.

                    • alternateguy
                      07/22/2011 at 2:43 PM

                      Some Rosetta Stone! Both bodies facing up on top of the covers. (But only one had his feet off of the bed.)

                      I may be slow on the uptake, but I thought this blog was neutral. However, since an editor of this blog has repeatedly cursed at me and now asks me to give it up, I will.

                      Not finding any real killers is, in my mind, the insult to the memory of Robert.

                      Again, I suggest that everyone read Al Gore’s book, An Assault on Reason. It expresses how very important a free internet is. The Church committee, by the way, revealed just how infiltrated our so-called free press had become. (Didn’t do much good, I think.)

                    • Clio
                      07/22/2011 at 5:03 PM

                      Thanks for the suggested reading, Alt: I’ll take that tome with me to Poodle Beach after the heat wave breaks.

                      The Shakespeare article is important because it does show what Dyl was reading right before bedtime: one only hopes that it did not give him any ideas. It is just another weird detail that is part of the preponderance of evidence in a circumstantial case: will PapaRazi have to use it at trial?

                    • Craig
                      07/25/2011 at 1:46 PM

                      This site isn’t neutral to bandwidth hogs who fail to do the research on the fundemental documents of the case. I’ll entertain your suggested reading after you complete the required assignments here. You sure got a lot of strong opinions for someone who’s so thin on the basic facts.

                    • 07/22/2011 at 6:07 PM

                      Goddamn, Alt., you Goddamn bum, do your Goddamn homework, you snot nosed fucking Goddamn idiot. Robert Wone’s body was in the same Goddamn identical position of Goddamn fucking Shakespeare, Goddamn it!

                      Your Goddamn fantasies, you Goddamn fucking Truther, are delusional, Goddamn it. so, give your fucking theories the fuck up, you fucking Goddamn Truther.

                      If you don’t fucking think like the other Goddamn people on this blog that I fucking agree with, you better fucking get the Goddamn hell out of here, cause we are not putting up with your Goddamn fuckin Jesus S. Christ fucking bullshit.

                      You Goddamn fucking loser, you are fucking insulting Robert’s memory, yeah, that’s what you are fucking doing. You fucking hate Robert Wone, you fucker. You heartless fucking moron. So just Goddamn fucking stop your fucking Goddamn theories, Goddamn fucking Truther.

                      Your Goddamn fucking editor.

                    • Craig
                      07/25/2011 at 1:41 PM

                      Get bent Bruce. After three years of tom foolery, I’m in no mood.

                  • Linda S.
                    07/22/2011 at 3:18 PM

                    Because the “intruder” theory is preposterous.

                    • 07/23/2011 at 6:04 PM

                      Hi Linda S:

                      Please give us a theory of the case, from the momentRobert Wone entered Swann Streetuntil the policearrived.

                      And show us it is not preposterous.

                      If you can, I will never mention again the intruder theory.

    • Bill Orange
      07/18/2011 at 6:06 PM

      Again, I really don’t see it playing out that way. This isn’t a garden-variety murder case. The victim was a former employee of the current Attorney General, whose former (and probably future) law firm is currently handling a multimillion dollar civil suit against the defendants.

      Yes, I understand that the AG has formally recused himself from this case, and I am fairly certain that he is going to great lengths to avoid even an appearance of impropriety here. But I think it’s fair to say that every prosecutor (and probably every lawyer) in DC is aware of his interest in the case, and it would likely reflect favorably on them with their boss if they could secure an arrest and a conviction here. I would expect the next indictment to drop right after the civil case wraps up. I would hit Victor first, with the terms of his bail including the surrender of his passport and the condition that he remain within 100 miles of DC (i.e., no trips to Florida).

      • 07/19/2011 at 6:46 PM

        Hiya Hoya and Alt:

        Have to post here because no room was left under your posts.

        As to Shakespeare, how stupid would a murderer have to be to pose his victim like the picture in a magazine, and then……LEAVE THE MAGAZINE OUT IN PLAIN SIGHT FOR THE POLICE TO SEE AFTER CALLING 911? That is pretty much high on the ignoramous scale, isn’t it? My opinion, my opinion.

        Of course, orchestrating or doing a murder in one’s own house is pretty stupid also. Isn’t that why there are abandoned buildings and dark nights? Stabbing Robert Wone because you think he’s dead? Dumb. Dumb. Dumb.

        And the one thing I do think is that these defendants are not stupid.

        The whole magazine thing seems so incredibly stupid to me that I have a hard time even contemplating any connection of the murder with that magazine at all.

        I think the way I feel about the magazine being a “ridiculous” and “stupid” piece of evidence is the way some people on here view the intruder theory.

        The DIFFERENCE is that I am not offended when someone mentions that magazine; they can talk about the magazine all day and all night if they want to. Ever hear me complain about that?

        I don’t feel at all threatened that someone, or everyone, in my opinion is a bit crazy to focus on that magazine or rely on it to any extent.

        I think it is stupid, but I am not offended or threatened if someone wants to think it is the centerpiece of the case.

        Why are people threatened or offended if someone mentions the intruder theory on here? People actually get angry on here when it is mentioned. Why the anger?

        One of our editors suggests that his thoughts and America’s thoughts are one on this and that it is rubbish. It is the stuff of Truthers to mention a paid hit. Others have actually said: “There was no intruder”, as if saying that enough as a fact, rather than an opinion, will convince someone that it is true.

        You know what? When someone tells me enough times to NOT look in that old building, although they can’t explain why in any sensical and normal manner, I’m probably going to look in that old building. In part, it is because of this odd and strange reaction of people on here to the very thought of an intruder that makes me think there may be something to it.

        Why the anger? Why do people feel treatened? Why offended? It doesn’t make sense to me. If the real purpose of this blog is to find out WMRW, that is.

        • Alternateguy
          07/19/2011 at 8:01 PM



          1). Invite a friend in, with everyone’s
          knowledge, and then kill him.

          2) Sexually assault your best straight friend.

          4) Leave tons of unusual sex toys to be found
          in the house.

          5) Kill him with one of your knives,
          which you then substitute for another of
          your knives.

          6) Leave said knife in or on victim’s body.

          7) Plan to blame intruder, but leave no
          evidence whatsoever of there being one

          8) Call Police to come find the body.

          9) Don’t appear to be giving aid and don’t
          express concern when responders enter room.

          10) Don’t call lawyers but spend hours trying
          to convince straight cops you’re ok.

          11) Tell around how you wiped up blood, and
          can’t tell truth for fear of arrest.

          • Bill Orange
            07/20/2011 at 2:43 AM

            Number 7 isn’t stupid, in my opinion. Assuming that the defendants are guilty, you would want a cover story to be as simple as possible, and you would want as little “fake” evidence as possible. You would assume that the DC forensics team was more like what you see on CSI as opposed to the bumbling incompetents that they actually were.

            Number 8 makes perfect sense if you’re worried that the neighbors heard a scream from next door and may have called the police already.

            Number 9 really is both callous AND stupid, regardless of your innocence or guilt, and frankly should be added to my list of known stupid things the defendants have done, posted below.

            Number 10 is, in my opinion, NOT stupid. As I have said many times before, you simply can’t call 911 and say, “The body’s upstairs, and we’re invoking our fifth amendment rights.” There would have been an immediate media shitstorm, and the civil suit would’ve hit immediately. Joe and Victor both would’ve lost their jobs, and the civil suit would very likely have ended prior to the statute of limitations expiring on a number of felonies, and the defendants would’ve been indicted on criminal charges with far fewer resources than they had available to them.

            Number 11, like number 9, is totally stupid, regardless of your innocence or guilt.

          • Hoya Loya
            07/20/2011 at 10:18 AM

            I think you mean “Stupid Things for Smart Men Who Have Committed Murder to Do.”

            Depsite the well-infomed speculation on this site, 1) and 2) are not facts. The knife switch (5) was basicially discredited at trial.

            As for 6), the knife should have been left on or in the body. Joe’s stupid move, to which he admits, was moving it.

            7): It is a fact that intruder was blamed and there is no evidnce. We do not know if this was part of a “plan” or not.

            8) Why was it stupid to call the police? It is the right thing to do if there was an intruder and if the were guilty, as you noted in 1), everyone knew Robert was there so he couldn’t just disappear. It was the only option regardless.

            9) Like it or not, another fact.

            10) Innocent or guilty, straight or gay cops, this was very stupid. As Joe noted himself, his lawyer would kill him for talking.

            11) Even taken in context, a very stupid statement.

            But no, smart people don’t do stupid things.

          • Emily
            07/20/2011 at 10:25 AM

            “1). Invite a friend in, with everyone’s
            knowledge, and then kill him.”

            Just a quick correction there – *everyone* didn’t have knowledge, apparently Victor didn’t know about it till he unexpectedly came home that night and his husband’s dom told him that Robert was staying the night.

          • Clio
            07/20/2011 at 10:14 PM

            12) Advertise for “thirds” on alt dot bomb before, during, and after the crime — publicly stating a preference for torture and then coyly side-stepping the question about drug use.

            13) Leave a professional conference early from Denver only to find a witch’s brew of resentments and addictions at home.

            14) Sleep with a neighbor and his trick, and then confer with comrades in his expensive sedan to tweek the party line one more.

            • Clio
              07/25/2011 at 10:57 PM

              15) Draft an electronic sketch of an ad for a porno biz jointly led by one’s kid brother, and then let it be googled on the Internet.

              16) Leave town on vacation only to have house burgled by one’s kid brother who had a key to the place after all.

              17) Fail to show up at the Holder news conference, while holding a birthday party at Halo a few months earlier.

        • Bill Orange
          07/20/2011 at 2:27 AM

          I agree that the defendants aren’t stupid. But they have, in this case, done a number of things that we know to be amazingly stupid. Number one on this list would be keeping a lot of BDSM pornographic photographs of yourself on your office computer. Number two would be telling the police that they are free to search your house and that all they’ll find is a little pornography, when you know they’re also going to find an enormous stash a BDSM gear, which is probably going to make you look very, very bad to them.

          Joe Price isn’t stupid, but he certainly HAS done some stupid things, so I’m fairly unconvinced by any argument that simply states, “He’s too smart to do that.”

          (On the other hand, I think that you could make a fairly compelling case that Victor Zaborsky has some sort of mental deficiency, but that’s an entirely different kettle of fish.)

          • susan
            07/20/2011 at 9:37 AM

            I agree, Bill O. There are too many variables in the non-quantitative term of “smart.” Was C. Anthony or O.J. “smart” or was it a combo of luck, inept police, individual jurors, etc., etc. that factored in their currently, presently, for the moment walking free?

            Whatever “smart” is and however it is measured if it exists by any standards it would be but one factor in whether someone commits a crime and/or gets away with it.
            And whatever “smart” is, it doesn’t eliminate possiblilities of greed, drug abuse, impulsiveness, etc., etc.

        • Hoya Loya
          07/20/2011 at 10:05 AM


          One argument that carries no weight with me is the one that says that smart upstanding professional guys would never have committed murder, or this stupid murder in particular. Such things happen every day.

          The magazine by itself is nothing. Every subscriber and purchaser had that issue lying around. Some may have even left it open to that page. As far as we know, only Dylan Ward had the magazine and left it open to that page when a dying man was posed in the same position across the hall. Stupid to leave it open, maybe, but it was left open. As for the semblance of the positions, it is an issue of fact for the beholder to judge, or at trial, for the jury to judge.

          It is one of many weird facts that standing on their own may mean nothing but create a circumstantial pattern when viewed together.

          It is as if, in JG’s hypothetical below, a stuffed cat toy was found in the dog’s bed tossed in the same position as the actual dead cat. Finding that toy on a normal evening means nothing. Finding that toy when a real dead cat is across the hall in the same position is different. And a finder of fact may decide it is significant or just coincidence.

          There is virtually no objective hard evidence, circumstantial or otherwise, of an intruder. That’s why I called it a defense, not an explanation — by its very nature as a defense, the defendants do not need to prove it is true, just provide enough credibility to offset the burden of proof.

          It remains a possibility, but it is not a theory with many adherents among those who look at the facts, including Judge L, the only trier of fact who has examined the issue. So some posters (and maybe at least one ed) get a little exasperated when someone insists on the intruder as culprit without adding any new insights into why that is so beyong “well, it could be true.”

          • 07/20/2011 at 10:35 AM

            Hi Hoya:

            I agree with virtually all you say, except your last paragraph where you refer to “when someone insists on the intruder as culprit…..”

            Who is “insisting,” Hoya? Name one person who is insisting that there was an intruder and it is my way or the highway.

            No one. Haven’t seen it. Just like those who are sure it was one or more of the Swann 3, some people have stated their opinions, and people disagree.

            One does not have to consider one theory to the exclusion of others. We are all human beings that were given minds that can multi-task and consider all options.

            Again, it is called critical thinking.

            And, by the way, as to any theory…..ANY theory in this case, everyone can say “well, it could be true,” as you state.

            Again, I don’t personally believe in the intruder theory. But I want to find out WMRW.

            Please don’t diminish those who are trying to keep an open mind and who resist the urge, as many on here would want it, to exclude any theory (as apparently many have on here.

            As Bea wisely says in a post above:

            “– here is where we try out theories of what happened to Robert Wone.”

            Sadly, that is NOT true. You can only discuss, or be ridiculed, any theory endorsed and supported by the old guard majority and editors on here. Anything else is heresy. And you are an apologist, conspirator or worse.

            This, thus, limits and in-breeds the posts. That’s sad.

            Thanks for your post. As I said at the beginning of this post, I agree with virtually all you say, and appreciate your insights.

            • Hoya Loya
              07/20/2011 at 11:40 AM

              Fair enough. Substitute “suggests” for “insists.”

              I in no way intend to diminish those with different reasonable views and do think I have been clear on that point, repeatedly. I remain open minded to evidence of an intruder, should someone come forward with a new thoughtful perspective or supporting evidence.

              E.g.: x number of break-ins in the Dupon area in 2006 in x of which intruders took adavantage of unlocked doors and in x of which nothing was ultimately taken and in x of which intruders were seen with knives or other weapons;


              an intruder killed Robert because . . . and managed to do it without any defensive wounds by . . .;

              Not “in intruder must have done it because the defendants are professionals and too smart to ruin their lives” or “hmm, that BlackbBerry mess is fishy, must be a conspiracy.”

              In the same way, I am open to speculation that argues for an in-house culprit by trying to interpret the facts of that evening. Not so much to theories that “they must have killed before” or “this must have been a planned murder” that lack factual basis.

          • Alternateguy
            07/20/2011 at 1:48 PM

            Hoya, I don’t think this is real new, in that I’ve posted some of these ideas before, But it seems interesting to me to tie this scenario together to compare to others.

            an intruder killed Robert because . . .unknown operatives believed that straight and honest Robert Wone had gained critical information, perhaps passed on to him by someone, concerning RFA’s clandestine operations involving a major power, and was planning to consult Joe Price, his old, trusted and legally trained friend for advice on what he should do with this information. Joe would have been, perhaps, the only knowledgeable person in Washington who Robert felt that he could fully trust.
            The planned stay over at Joe’s was set up by Robert as an opportunity to speak with him privately as soon as he got the chance. Unfortunately people who had been closely monitoring Robert, knew of his plans, and then had begun casing the Swann Street house for some days. The day, and night in question were chosen because they believed that either information or documents were going to be passed onto Joe, perhaps during that evening’s meeting. Why wasn’t he killed on the street as he left the meeting? His brief case snatched? That would be too obvious, too dangerous, and without any fall guy patsies.

            and managed to do it without any defensive wounds by . . .swiftly entering the house the moment that sleeping sounds were heard from Robert’s room, incapacitating him with a shot of an untraceable drugs, stabbing him with a knife taken from the resident’s kitchen, leaving as stealthily as one entered.
            ‘Tis as simple as Occam’s razor.

            One might wonder about the chime on entry as well as the groan/scream. But, the chime might have been a test to see if the household would react. (They didn’t.) The assailant could have done the groan/scream from downstairs upon leaving simply to achieve the affect it had (That answers a question that I’ve long had; why such a mysterious and apparently loud sound came from a nearly dead man? (A sound made repeatedly from the first floor until the assailant knew that the residents had been well aroused?).

            If someone were to buy into this theory of mine, they wouldn’t even need to use the often-overlooked evidence of the crushed next-door sandbox lid, unless they found it helpful.

            It’s often said that the triple had no way of knowing how ineffective the D.C. Police investigation would be. But the black bag operatives that I speak of would know very well about the police in question.

            Do cabals and such folks exist? Many millions of levelheaded Americans believe that it’s possible. Particularly, true of anyone, like myself, old enough to remember the Church committee hearings.

            • Alternateguy
              07/20/2011 at 2:23 PM

              I meant to say …either information or documents were going to be passed onto Robert

            • 07/20/2011 at 2:32 PM

              Interesting, Alt.

              Arguments against it, of course, could include:

              (1) The BIGGIE: Who would want to kill Robert Wone, who was just a lawyer for his organization? If you wanted to hurt the organization, kill the President of it or the Spokesperson for it. What is special about Wone that he would be targeted in this way?

              (2) It is just a coincidence that Robert Wone worked for an organization that has come under intense criticism by enemy countries to the U.S. Also, his organization would be unlikely to be near the top of the list for any enemy country to treat in this manner.

              (3) Weren’t there papers found or some testimony about what Robert Wone wanted to talk to JP about? Something about trademarks or intellectual property? Not how to protect himself or his organizations secrets.

              (4) Why would an intruder pick that time of night, when people were still up in the neighborhood, to commit the murder. Wouldn’t you do it in the middle of the night?

              (5) It clearly wasn’t a burglary. Why wouldn’t this assassin make it look like a bungled burglary if this was really a hit person?

              (6) Based on the configuration of the house and neighbors, how did this assassin know what room Robert Wone was in, and how could he “case the joint” without others seeing him walking their dogs, etc.?

              (7) There is the time element. Very little time to do this assassin work.

              (8) Hardwood floors, etc. How did no one hear the assassin?

              (9) It is just a coincidence that Eric Holder, politically connected and now the Attorney General of the U.S, was involved with this case from the very beginning. He knew Robert Wone from the firm and just got involved personally to show his personal concern.

              These are just some of the problems with this assassin theory. Now, I’m not saying that there aren’t also serious problems with other theories of how and why Robert Wone was murdered, involving the Swann 3 or others.

              One thing I am intrigued by is the evidence regarding knives. The prosecution in the criminal case tried to tie the stabbing to the knives found (or missing) which were stored in Lil Dyl’s room.

              It is my understanding that there was no absolutely clear knife identified as the weapon.

              If there is any validity to the intruder theory, I am pretty convinced that someone took the knife from the kitchen and put it on or near the body, with some blood on the knife (there was some testimony at the criminal trial that the blood on this kitchen knife was not likely to have been caused by the murder itself, based upon its appearance).

              The purpose of the kitchen knife being on or near the body was to attempt to throw the police onto the residents of the house as suspects. The killer always intended on using his or her own knife and taking it with them when they left.

              While I don’t personally subscribe to the assassin theory, I want someone or everyone to bark up every tree and not exclude any possibility (other than space martians).

              Thanks for your post. To most I think it will appear preposperous. To me, it is just as crazy as most other theories as to WMRW.

              • Alternateguy
                07/20/2011 at 3:48 PM


                (1) The organization was/is working fine, except for a whistle blower? Perhaps one
                who had consulted the first attorney? (The one who was canned) A WB didn’t trust
                the people at the top? (What whistle blowers do?) But we don’t know that there was a whistle blower. Maybe Robert simply stumbled on something or was approached with a cover-up deal and turned it down.

                (2) Who said that a foreign country did it? We have our own spooks.

                (3) Robert wouldn’t have been so open to tell Joe over the phone the real nature of his need to speak with him. Sounds like a made up excuse to me.

                (4) A good question. May have heard Robert typing on his Blackberry and wanted to make sure he sent nothing telling out to anyone? It was an opportune time? It would be harder to get the household to respond once they were more soundly asleep? Maybe they wanted to involve that shift of the M.P.D.

                (5)Easier and more effective to leave the tangle of suspicion that they did leave.

                (6) These guys would be experts, had high tech listening equipment and plenty of advance notice. (Besides, from the photos that I’ve seen, the house was a fish bowl. Not a lot of drapes or shades.)

                (7) The time element makes the rape, assault, murder, clean-up and line rehearsal thing virtually impossible. The intruder thing, not nearly so. Except for prior surveillance, quick in, and quick out.

                (8) They were asleep? The assassin wore socks over his shoes? He made the
                awakening noises from downstairs and simply stepped out some door?

                (9) Is it? Or perhaps he had some suspicions of his own. People on the top are
                sometimes the last to know everything that’s going on. (Ask Nixon.)

                Thanks for your continuing interest. A lot of preposterous things do go on in our country. And, while there are always attempts to throw suspicion on the lowest on the totem pole, they are not always them who done it.

                I come from where I do, because I have a very wise friend who knows the defendants pretty well, and who considers the likelihood of them being the villains here, to be, well, preposterous.

            • Hoya Loya
              07/20/2011 at 2:52 PM


              Thanks for spelling it out, though I tend to agree with Bruce’s measured comments. Btw, the sandbox lid was largely discounted by Judge L. because the deep stairwell leading to Sarah M.’s basement apartment was on the other side of the fence, making it an unlikely spot for an intruder to jump the fence in either direction.

              Bruce, just some helpful info re: the knives:

              1. The kitchen knife at the scene was found to be consistent with the wounds by all experts and the judge.

              2. Judge L. determined that the kitchen knife was the murder weapon due to the presence of chest hair and fatty globules on the blade.

              3. Judge L. did determine that swirl marks showed that the blade had been wiped off with a towel, but not that blood had been smeared on the knife.

              4. No proof was offered that “Dylan’s knife,” the missing knife from the set found in his bedroom was ever in Dylan’s possession or in the house. His mother testified that it was not.

              5. All experts found that “Dylan’s knife” could also have been consistent with the wounds, but not necessarily more consistent than the kitchen knife.

              • 07/20/2011 at 3:11 PM

                Thanks, Hoya. Especially for the knifes reminders.

                So, if I recall the trial expert testimony correctly, and consistent with your 5 items above:

                -The murder weapon could have been the kitchen knife, the knife in or missing from Lil Dyl’s room, or a similar knife if used by the actual killer and taken away from the house by the killer.

                Thus, there is no clear murder weapon.

                However, the kitchen knife being close to the body, and with JP indicating that he may have removed the knife from inside Robert Wone’s body (although the language used is kind of vague on what is meant by JP in this regard), the kitchen knife is a likely murder weapon.

                Yet the prosecution in the criminal trial pushed the missing knife in Lil Dyl’s room as the weapon, causing Dyl’s mother to testify that she had that missing knife.

                What a wild ride everything in this case is!!!!!

                • Hoya Loya
                  07/20/2011 at 3:45 PM

                  IIRC, the Maryland medical examiner who testified for the prosecution testified that there were bruises on Robert’s chest from the hilt of the knife and that this was more likely if the knife was a bit shorter (as was Dylan’s knife). The problem was that expansion and contraction of the chest from breathing is an unknown variable, hence the difficulty in excluding one knife on that basis.

                  The issue was pretty much dead in the water long before Dylan’s mom took the stand.

                  The kitchen knife was at the scene and per Dr. Lee’s testimony, accepted by the judge, the blood pattern, hair and tissue showed it was the weapon. Plus Joe stated that he touched, moved or removed the knife (depending on whether he was talking to the detectives at Anacostia, at the Cosi debriefing or to Tara). And it’s not likely that one would have wiped blood OFF the knife, as the towel marks showed, if one was planting it at the scene.

                  The issue was pretty much dead in the water long before Dylan’s mom took the stand.

                  But it could have been Dylan’s knife or a intruder’s own knife only if it can be proven that either of these other two were ever on the premises. No one testified e.g. that they saw Dylan flourishing his three piece knife set to carve a Thanksgiving turkey and as we know, there is no trace of an intruder, never mind his knife.

                • Bill Orange
                  07/20/2011 at 3:59 PM

                  It was, if I recall, even more bizarre than that. Dylan’s mother didn’t just testify that she had the missing knife. She testified that she had two different possible missing knives.

                  • susan
                    07/20/2011 at 7:40 PM


                    Thanks for your input. These are good discussions. I believe you mean S. Hixson above re the acct of “pulling out the knife” from RW as told by JP to SH.

                    Bill O. Mrs. Ward stated that she used that particular knife a lot so she took it from the set that she later gave to DW upon his grad. from culinary school. According to Mrs. Ward she gave her son an incomplete knife set as a gift. She had the spare set. As I recall the knife sets were bought in Germany, etc.

              • alternateguy
                07/20/2011 at 7:08 PM


                If an intruder had a way of scaling the fence or opening the gate, and he was a very careful intruder, perhaps he wanted to check the stairway down first to make sure no one was either there or just inside the basement door.

                So, stepped on the sandbox lid to look over the fence at that point.

                Or perhaps a less careful intruder looked over the fence at that place, “Oops, cant go that way!” So went another.

                If defendants car was just outside of the gate, that would have given an intruder a whole lot of cover to pick the lock or slip the gate night-latch or whatever, to gain access while not being seen.

  11. susan
    07/18/2011 at 8:15 PM

    I agree with Bea. Some interesting and thoughtful discussions posted today. In a few more days it will be a month since it was reported that both sides were in mediation. Is this within the range of standard, time-wise?

    • Bea
      07/18/2011 at 9:06 PM

      Hi Susan, the process of settlements can drag on for months although one would think the Judge here might have them on a tighter leash. I suspect there was an agreement as to key terms reached orally, perhaps with only one defendant, or as to certain causes of action/insurer elements, but that the breakdown may have come on the “lesser” issues. While it’s always possible that those issues will too be resolved, the process may also be slowed if there is any insurance controversy – for example, would an insurance company pay out policy limits (use, for argument purposes, $3 Million) if they have to continue representing the defendants on intentional acts, or, perhaps the insurance company isn’t willing to pay on negligence for anyone but Joe, or, perhaps, depending on the policy, could Dylan be considered an “insured” and is there money available for him to use in settling the dispute? And there’s the possibility that they’ve gotten hung up on warranties (that if, say, later evidence proves guilt, the settlement could be set aside) or in desiring a written statement from the defendants to state what happened that night and be accountable for the statements.

      In my experience, too, settlement discussions can go stale and fall away AND too they can be resurrected long after one things they’re over because circumstances change (as an example, if Kathy got a job back in Chicago and wanted to move on with her life OR if the defendants “break up” and Victor wants out of the lawsuit and will give up new information).

      • susan
        07/18/2011 at 9:27 PM

        Thanks, Bea.

  12. Craig
    07/19/2011 at 1:07 PM

    As much as some would like a rehash of individual theories, the comments section isn’t the best spot for it. If you’d like to jump start it Bruce, email us your thoughts and we’ll post it.

    • Gloria
      07/19/2011 at 1:43 PM

      Alternately, conduct another survey of readers, this time, weighing in on their theories of what went down. (I think we’ve all given up on predicting what will actually happen, like we did before when surveyed on how Judge L would rule.) But this time, add a measurement of conviction — how firmly the respondent feels about the choice of theories.

  13. susan
    07/19/2011 at 7:28 PM

    New Yorker article was mentioned and Shakespeare pose. I’m reminded that though sometimes the pen is mightier than the sword, in this case the pen resembles a sword–or a knife. Strange arm pose. Opened to that page in DW’s room. Possibly coincidence. Possibly not.

    While I’m posting, AnnaZed, thanks for your post above re the Karpman trans. drama triangle. Had never heard of that before but your point is made.

    Re the 911 call, and much of the testimony of the trouple, etc. my belief is that there is obvious fact, and obvious and potential fiction all mixed together. Obvious fact, e.g, RW came to our home. Obvious fiction, let me check my phone, no I see no message from Kathy in my phone, potential fiction, I heard a laughing scream/low groan/high pitched scream.

    Re the 911 call, what stands out to me is his roundabout reference to a possible knife and the way he goes from hysterical to pretty quiet as it seems he’s listening, not to the 911 operator, but to Joe Price. What’s odd, too, is that by the police officers’ accounts and even from what we can see from the videotapes, JP likes to take the lead, yet he sends VZ to make the call. Sends him out of the room, allegedly and up a flight of stairs, and he goes all alone, despite the fact that a crazed gang or one crazed person is still on the loose ready to kill again. Hard to believe.

    Re 911

  14. Alternateguy
    07/19/2011 at 7:40 PM

    Thanks, Susan, once again, for the NYer picture.

    Joe said that Robert’s arm was across his chest when he found him. Shakespeare’s feet are clear off of the bed.

    Joe took the lead, tried to figure out what to do to help Robert, sent the hysterical Victor upstairs on a specific mission, back to the same room that they had just come from, where Victor would obviously know that there was no intruder.

  15. susan
    07/19/2011 at 7:48 PM

    You know, the intruder theory has been brought up. It is one mentioned by Judge L. and one that many agree is a possibility. Many posters here agree that if there was a fifth person in that house–an “intruder”–then it was not someone unknown to the three men who called themselves a family. This was in the judge’s ruling and cited often on these pages.

    Personally, I have no working theory of what I think the role of each person was that night or who murdered Robert Wone. I do believe though, that the “family” home that night that Robert Wone was murdered have not cooperated fully with Kathy Wone or the police. They still have that option.

    • Alternateguy
      07/19/2011 at 8:04 PM

      Maybe that’s why the settlement?

  16. JG
    07/20/2011 at 1:16 AM

    It’s hard to disagree that causality has not yet be proven in a court of law as to WMRW. Certainly, if anyone frequenting this site possesses such damning court-admissible evidence and has not yet been forthcoming to the authorities, may all of hell’s wrath await you. And hopefully, no frequent posters would ever use this site as a platform to merely display their argumentative prowess, and nothing more. That would be especially shameful for anyone ever practicing or hoping to practice law; where justice should be valued over self-aggrandization.

    And as I’ve been thinking, if my friend and her cat came over to spend the night with me, and the next morning we find her cat dead or dying in the very room where we left her to sleep, with three big bite marks in her neck, perhaps I might think of suggesting that some sort of wild animal may have entered the house at night to cause this horror. And perhaps I would look my friend in the eyes while explaining this to her, while stroking the furry necks of my three large feral dogs that always sleep inside my house. I know if I really wanted to, I could perhaps get her to doubt her own theories just a little bit. And I’m sure if I permitted it, I could even convince myself.

  17. susan
    07/20/2011 at 10:07 AM

    Thread too thin above where 911 call is mentioned but V sounds fairly authentic to me for the first half of the call, BUT I am wondering when he says “We have no idea…” who did this, “We don’t know how they got in…” and all those subsequent we’s. Maybe there was the general assumption by V that both were in the dark OR there was a confab beforehand.

    You can hear when he is speaking with JP or rather, when JP is speaking with V. Around 4.17 on the tape there is silence, when clearly JP is saying something to V and then we says something about the “person had one of our knives” and I think he alludes or doesn’t verify whether that person still has the knife. But he is right there. Can’t he see the knife? And clearly JP asks him to ask the time. Around that second half things don’t ring very earnest to me ears. First half seems more credible. I think maybe V really is upstairs then.

  18. Bill 2
    07/20/2011 at 12:26 PM

    Today, for the first time ever, the Senate Judiciary Committee is conducting a hearing on repealing DOMA – the Defense of Marriage Act. Many organizations, such as the Courage Campaign, are preparing videos of happily committed gay couples to use in the push to end DOMA. This brings to mind the attempts by Price to pass off his living arrangements as being the homelife of a happily committed gay couple. In the Fall of 2006 Price and Zaborsky attended W&M GALA (William and Mary Gay and Lesbian Alumni/ae) festivities as a committed couple during the college’s Homecoming Weekend. You have to wonder how many GALA dinner guests knew of the duo’s involvment in the death of a W&M graduate.

    While gay organizations promoting the end of DOMA are preparing videos of real committed couples, there’s the Price-Zaborsky W&M video that seems to be as fake as the Swann Street intruder. The turmoil and polygamy of that household are well hidden from viewers of the video. Instead of a happily committed couple, we now know there’s a head of household who wants multiple sex partners, a cuckolded partner who tolerates a live-in mistress, a mistress who wants to get the cuckold dumped from the arrangement, a neighbor who sprints from across the street for sex parties when cuckold is out of town, and Gladys Kravitz living in the basement apartment. Let’s hope the Senate Judiciary Committee never sees the Price-Zaborsky W&M video nor hears about their type of committed relationship.

    • Bea
      07/21/2011 at 4:47 AM

      Agree. It’s one of the reasons I became so bothered by this case, specifically that Joe held himself out as such a role model. He wasn’t satisfied being the lawyer behind the scene (but always able to get his name in the story). He was in the photo that ran in USA Today in 2004. He put his son’s photo on the W&M GALA website. He gave the interview you mention while the Grand Jury was underway. It galls me that he was directly asked about his “family” and he went on and on about Victor and the lesbian moms (and pointed out the need for the flow chart to understand the wholesome picture). If he was an honest man, he’d have mentioned Dylan, that absent member of “the family”- the man he claimed to police was “married” to him. He told the story he wanted his admirers to believe. Where’s the bravado about being proud of his family in the video? I do “get” taking only Victor to the Arent Fox events (would Dylan even agree to go as “second wife”?) but in agreeing to be interviewed, he had to know the true story would soon break. Why go on record at all? If he needed the attention that badly, he could’ve shown some courage by owning his chosen way of life. It’s despicable that he sat for the camera and pretended to be the sanitized Joe Price.

      I always think about how in his Alt Dot Com profile he was willing to say that he enjoyed torture and drinking urine but coyly stated he “would rather not say” whether he did drugs. I hate that all of us gay folk get a black eye whenever a story runs about the murder or civil case BECAUSE Joe Price was adept at self-promotion before the murder.

      The photo of Joe grinning like cat-post-canary the day Judge L read her verdict says so much – I know the Eds have run it many times – to me, it captures his essence. Assuming for the moment that he was genuinely innocent of all the charges and that he was truly a “victim” of the “unknown intruder,” who would be so uncaring as to mug for the camera so expressively when his murdered friend’s widow is close by? Who is so callous to exhibit exuberance knowing it will run on the evening news? It’s actually surprising that PR-savvy Joe didn’t do the tasteful “there are no winners today” somber mini-smile when staring at the camera. I understand being relieved, even feeling vindicated (despite the wording of the opinion) and I can accept his doing his happy dance behind closed doors at Aunt Marcia’s. I honestly don’t think he could resist. He’d “WON!” and since he couldn’t fist-pump or chest-bump Dylan, he expressed his f-you for the camera. It disgusted me then and disgusts me to this day.

      • Bill 2
        07/21/2011 at 11:32 AM

        For anyone seeking the truth of what happened to Robert Wone, Price’s penchant for deception rules him out. If people who know him are aware of his distortions and still support his intruder tale, then I would have a difficult time in giving them credit for their own believability. IOW, don’t tell me you know Price and that he’s an honest guy because I’ll wonder about your ability to know and speak the truth.

        • Bill 2
          07/21/2011 at 11:35 AM

          btw, my “you” was aimed at Price supporters, not at all directed at Bea.

        • alternateguy
          07/21/2011 at 12:26 PM

          Bill 2

          IOW, Your mind seems made up. When you simply distrust the judgment of any who see Joe in a different light from what you do, that sounds to me like the very definition of the word Prejudice. Have you really tried to analyze and weigh, one by one for yourself, those statements or actions that some people loudly describe as Joe’s distortions and deceptions? I get the impression that you buy into what others say regarding Joe’s character without much question.

          Do you chalk off all of the good and thoughtful things that Joe Price has done for others as simply being self serving? How can a Joe Price or anyone else ever win under that style of analysis? He sure seemed like a good friend of Robert’s, but We know different!” Am I wrong?

          • Bea
            07/21/2011 at 3:26 PM

            This reminds me of discussions of Ted Bundy, how he had legions of followers because of his law student persona, the guy who volunteered at the suicide hotline and was an up-and-comer in local/state politics. Alt, being unable to look at a situation works both ways. Why did Joe lie in his W&M interview while the Grand Jury was busy indicting him? Why even agree to be interviewed if he knew he planned to lie about “his family life”?

            • 07/21/2011 at 6:53 PM

              How do you know JP is lying?

              His lips are moving.

              [Hilarity ensues]

              Am I right? Am I right? I’m here all weekend folks.

              One thing you did not mention about Ted Bundy, Bea, is that a lot of people believe what helped him most gain fans was that (1) He was very good looking; and (2) Apparently he was very charismatic.

              Those two items are often found with sucessful psychopaths, also sometimes called sociopaths.

              For two good books on psychopathy, which are quite readable, I would recommend: (1)The Psychopath Test: A Journey Through the Madness Industry by Jon Ronson; and (2) The Sociopath Next Door by Martha Stout. I read both this summer.

              The Ronson book has some humor included, and is essentially a journalist’s investigation into psychopathy. It is definately the lighter of the two and perfect for summer reading.

              Stout’s book is quite serious and includes lists of ways to spot psychopaths and how to deal with them at work, etc.

              A psychologist named Robert Hare came up with 20 indicia of psychopathy, a test used all over now in the mental health world. He has written books on it, and the Ronson book includes a list of that indicia.

              The scary thing about psychopaths like Bundy, and the thing they all share, is that they have no conscience to tell them right from wrong. They also have no empathy for others: human or animal.

              Both the two books I suggested above tell you that you don’t have to ever worry about hurting the feelings of psychopaths. They have none!

              An article in the paper I read today says that 1 out of 66 people are psychopathic. Stout, in her book, puts it at 3 to 4% of the population, and cites studies. Ronson puts it at 1% or slightly less of the population. 20% in prison are psychopaths per Hare and his studies, which makes sense, although you might think it should even be higher.

              Even if we go with the lower 1%, that means hypothetically that one out of every one hundred people you pass by each day has no conscience and no empathy whatsoever.


              • alternateguy
                07/21/2011 at 7:42 PM


                Just some thoughts. Excuse please, if I don’t get this precisely right; But when one of his disciples asked him, how can we identify the evil one, Jesus is supposed to have replied “Know them by their works.”

                Who ever murdered Robert Wone was clearly evil. Covering up for a murderer is clearly evil.

                But is Joe Price the evil one? If we say so, exactly how do we know so?

                I think that this is too important for guess work and impressions.

                From what I hear about Joe Price, he has a history of being generous with his time and does good work for people. Joe has been known to make good friends, but is he either charismatic or good looking? I would think not. If he doesn’t emphathise with other, he appearently puts on a really good act and is loyal to his friends.

                Nothing like a sociopath from anything I’ve heard, though a few posters here seem to feel otherwise.

                • Bea
                  07/21/2011 at 9:58 PM

                  My guess is that Joe thinks Joe is very attractive. Certainly in the 2006 timeframe he looked much better than he does now but being a dyke I can’t really say if he rated as “attractive” to anyone other than himself, Victor and Dylan (my guess is that his self-confidence, power and money made up for his unfortunate neckline).

                  Many people who claim to know Joe well at various junctures have written here of his arrogance, his temper, and his narcissism. Even among those who claim to have liked him wrote that it was wise not to “cross him” because he was very vindictive (I recall Tara Ragone said the same thing but I’d have to check the Washingtonian article to be sure).

                  Unlike with Victor, whose counsel at trial asked nearly every personal witness if Victor was a kind man and got a positive response, Joe has been characterized widely as egotistical and abrasive. I’ve been reading here since the inception and would say that the people with negative things to say about Joe greatly outnumber the positive (and that’s counting as a “positive” his high school friend who thought him a good guy despite several negative qualities).

                  Before you say “but we don’t know the people who write on here” and that thaty may be lies, do not discount that even Judge L noted Joe’s combative and rude behavior with the police at Anacostia.

                  I do not have a first hand impression of Joe, but I do read what you write and wonder if we’re talking about the same individual.

                  I do know one person who knew Joe well on a professional level, worked with him daily, and he said he was an arrogant SOB. I am a friend-of-a-friend of Joe’s who has stayed in Joe’s camp through thick and thin, but he really knew him many years before the murder. (Just want to advise of all the positive things as well).

                  I’ve heard mention of business people’s interaction with him (on a personal not professional matter) refer to him as “the biggest a-hole I ever met” and I’ve communicated with another who felt that Joe cheated and lied to him to “get ahead” even as Joe trumpeted himself as being a hero for the underdog.

                  I’d bet that his son and Victor think he’s swell, though.

                  My opinion of Joe is that his “good works” were primarily for personal glory, pro bono credit at his law firm, and to help his status as an A-Gay. His amazing self-promotion may mean something different to you than it does to me – he was quite successful at it – but he was hardly toiling in the background without credit.

                  He lied to police as he fingered Victor’s cell phone. He lied to the W&M interviewer about his “family” even though he claimed to be proud of his trouple. He named a lot of names during his interview – his brother’s HIV status and drug use, several friends’ reliance on antidepressants, Sarah’s weight, the “black guy” who might be suspect – none of these things make me think of Joe as a role model or even a very nice guy.

                  I’ve done a lot of reading about sociopaths too, and its overlap with narcissism on the spectrum. No one can diagnose from this blog – one way or the other – but I certainly wouldn’t rule out Joe as either or both. If one of the three defendants were said to be sociopathic (and I’m not claiming that they are), then my money would be on Joe in a nanosecond.

                  • Alternateguy
                    07/21/2011 at 10:17 PM


                    From what you say, I gather that Joe has two or more sides. If his personality is integrated and he functions OK, that is one thing. If he leaves a wake of destruction behind, that’s another.

                    As always, I appreciate you sharing your views.

                  • 07/22/2011 at 6:36 PM

                    Hi Bea:

                    I agree with you that we can’t diagnose on this blog.

                    I’m afraid we need both more lifetime information about the subjects and an expert such as a doctor to make such a conclusion.

                    Robert Hare, who came up with the 20 indicia of psychopathy, was worried that they could be misused and mark people with the shame of being a Psychotic (there is no cure for psychopathy, and no good treatment. Once diagnosed or considered a psychopath, it is almost impossible to “prove” that you are not one).

                    So, while any of us can wonder, I’m afraid none of us are qualified to determine such a diagnosis, and we would need much more information than we know, to even try to do so.

                • 07/22/2011 at 6:24 PM

                  Hi Alt. Enjoyed your post above.

                  Certainly, JP does not have to be the Devil to be evil.

                  Evil exists.

                  One doesn’t have to be a psychopath to murder someone, but a psychopath would not care in the least if he or she did murder someone.

                  I don’t see actual psychopathy with any of the defendants, at least using Robert Hare’s list of 20 identifying criteria. We would have to know much more about each of their early histories (including any juvenile delinquency or cruelty to animals), as well as exactly how he dealt with friends and family throughout his life.

                  With what we do know about all of the defendants’ histories, I certainly couldn’t name any of them a psychopath. But, I don’t even play a doctor on TV, much less in real life.

                  • Alternateguy
                    07/22/2011 at 6:54 PM


                    Thanks, as always, for your clear thinking.

                    You’d think that I’d know better than to get sucked into playing amateur shrink. Really, I do know better. Really!

            • susan
              07/21/2011 at 11:43 PM

              Hi Bea,

              I just read up on T. Bundy and am still reading. Heard of him but didn’t know as much as I do now. You make a good point though I’m not saying it necessarily applies to J. Price. For instance, C. Ann Boone was someone who worked with TB in the Washington State Govt in the department that was actually looking into some of his crimes in that state–while he was working for that dept! Anyhow, despite tons and tons of evidence from Wash., Utah, Florida etc., pointing to his guilt, and even some admissions on his part, this woman was a character witness for him and even married him in court under an obscure Florida law that allowed it. Apparently she even had a child by him in 1982. It may be an extreme example, but it does show how some people can see what they want to in others and block out the more unsavory aspects. Honestly, I think we all do this every day to some degree with the people in our own lives.

              I read an excerpt from the Jaycee Dugard book in which she mentions that Garrido (the sick monster who imprisoned and killed a part of her with rape, abuse, etc.)had his older mother living with them for a while and Jaycee got the impression the mother didn’t like her and that she thought that was because J’s presence was a reminder of the unsavory side/sides of her son.

              One of the people who worked with T. Bundy at the suicide prevention center wrote a book about him called something like “The Stranger Beside Me.” All this means is that sometimes people don’t know the people they think they know. And this could apply to the trouple or any of us. So good works (Equality VA, for instance) doesn’t necessarily mean JP was not complicit in any way in R. Wone’s death.

              • Bea
                07/22/2011 at 12:33 AM

                Agree. I read Ann Rule’s book “The Stranger Beside Me” and I think of it often in relation to Joe Price. I’m not saying by any stretch of the imagine that Price is a serial killer. I don’t think there is even a remote chance that JP is a serial killer. None. But I do wonder about personality disorders in relation to Joe Price which brought Bundy to mind.

            • Bill 2
              07/24/2011 at 11:48 PM

              Bea, It goes beyond the lie on the W&M tape regarding Price’s “family life,” there’s also what could be seen as a lie when you consider his marriage to Zaborsky. Society expects that when two people marry, the couple has a serious commitment to each other. We know that Price has/had no intention of there being any wedded bliss with one person. There’s the mistress living downstairs and there’s the neighbor, Scott (Popover) Hixson, who would trot across the street to sample some S&M, and who knows how many others who spent time in the 3rd floor bedroom when Zaborsky was away.

              In judging Price by his history, we can include his attempts to mislead police regarding Zaborsky’s phone that he pretended was his. That was on the night that Robert Wone was murdered and clearly indicates his unwilling to speak the truth from the very beginning of this event.

              None of Price’s pro bono activity can make up for his behavior regarding the death of Robert Wone. His pro bono work will be long forgotten before the memories of Robet Wone fade away.

        • Bill Orange
          07/22/2011 at 8:56 AM

          Bea and Bill 2,

          I’d like to preface this by pointing out that I agree with the two of you, but I think Alternateguy’s point is that Joe Price was close friends with a number of people who were almost saint-like in terms of their character. Robert Wone was one of them. Lisa Desjardins is another. Craig has told us that Joe had a bunch of people down to Florida for the fourth of July, so I suspect that there are still people who believe in him and trust him as a close friend. If you follow the rule of “You are judged by the company you keep”, he was surrounded by a lot of really good people.

          As Bea has pointed out, you can also find a lot of people who will tell you that Joe Price is a total asshole. But what I really haven’t seen a lot of–and maybe this is happening behind the scenes, and we just don’t know about it–is a group people going from “I thought he was a great guy when I first met him,” to “I now realize what a complete monster this man is.” I think that Kathy Wone and Tara Ragone are the only two people who are making statements like this. This could just be because a lot of the “good” people who were friends with Joe (and I would include Robert Wone in this group) simply weren’t very good judges of character to begin with, but I think the absence of these types of statements is what allows Joe Price to maintain the handful of defenders that he still has.

          If/when the civil trial occurs, this might change a lot. As Tara Ragone said, there comes a point where you have to pick a side. But the absence of people out there who have “turned” on Joe Price does, as Alternateguy points out, need to be considered as a point in his favor.

          • David
            07/22/2011 at 10:57 AM

            Bill O,

            I think your analysis misses a key point –Joe lost most if not all of his friends in DC, many who gave him the benefit of the doubt before the affadavit hit in October of 2008. After that, they began to see some of his more boorish behavior in a new light, and then completely disowned him after that. And that bunch of people Joe had down for the 4th wasn’t a bunch, but was less than half a handful, and let be be charitablity said are easily led.


            • alternateguy
              07/22/2011 at 11:57 AM


              Not very charitable, I think; your opinion of people you don’t know anything about and haven’t even met.

              Easily led? That could apply to those who easily buy into media spin and “Official” opinions.

              The friend of the triple, that I know, has quite good judgment regarding character; is a great debunker.

            • 07/22/2011 at 6:42 PM


              Who were the people, and how do you know they are easily misled?

            • Bill Orange
              07/23/2011 at 3:56 AM

              You guys are in DC, and I’m not, so I’ll take your word for it, but that information hasn’t really gotten wide press coverage.

          • Clio
            07/22/2011 at 11:07 AM

            Recall Joe’s peasant origins in east Texas, then Florida, Okinawa, and Bourne, Massachusetts — exactly how were he and Michael brought up by a peripatetic military family? It must have been very difficult for the Brothers Price to have had real friends and to have been themselves. Were they raised to lie about who they were and about what they did?

            So, the Dr. Jekyll part of Culuket wanted to escape this plebeian oppression by becoming a Virginia gentleman, albeit an openly gay and slightly pushy cavalier. His “goody-goody” friends probably associated the less pleasing aspects of Joe to his spartan childhood, excusing them as penance to the ideal of open social mobility in the United States. But, for Culuket, Mr. Hyde may be always in the background, reflecting the inherent violence and addictions of “the American character.”

            Uncle Michael chose not to pursue the main chance, and thus he never had to live in the two or more social milieus that his big brother had to do.

            • mw
              07/22/2011 at 11:25 AM

              People can commit murder and also have done some good things in their life. It seems reasonable that the people more connected to the good things would have a better impression of Joe than those more connected to the murder. (Kathy). That’s just the way humans are. We overestimate a person’s relation to us in evaluating their worth, and we oversimplify someone’s life into terms of “good” and “bad” based on that limited experience.

              • alternateguy
                07/22/2011 at 12:19 PM


                I think we are not speaking shades of gray here – degrees of good and bad. Murder is extreme.

                Beyond suspicions raised by this mysterious case, can you name even one person who can say that they know of something evil, sinful or hugely illegal that Joe has ever done?

                In trying to accuse some adult of an extreme crime, shouldn’t we at least have some history of something foreshadowing such an extreme act?

                • AnnaZed
                  07/22/2011 at 12:24 PM

                  “…In trying to accuse some adult of an extreme crime, shouldn’t we at least have some history of something foreshadowing such an extreme act?”

                  No, why on earth would you think that?

                • mw
                  07/22/2011 at 12:30 PM

                  Well, he seemed to be pretty controlling. That’s a pretty typical precursor to violent crimes.

                  And we have to consider the type of crime here too. It’s a sex crime. We certainly have quite a history of S&M, domination. While legal, and certainly nothing that “proves” a crime, I would expect most people who commit sex crimes of this manner to have that those types of sexual interests.

                  • mw
                    07/22/2011 at 12:31 PM

                    And, aside from all that – people commit murder all the time even without a publically known “ramping up” period. I’d say that this type of domestic, sex-motivated urder who fall under that category (just anecdotally).

                  • alternateguy
                    07/22/2011 at 1:35 PM


                    We hardly know the manner of the crime or even, if it was a sex crime.

                    I, for one, have no idea if the practice of acting out sex play roles leads to violence or not. But I generally think that it is repressed impulses which can lead to murder.

                    Apparently happily married couples can murder one another based on sides of their life that others don’t see.

                    In this case, the victim was, apparently not involved with the family life of the household in any way, yet became the victim.

                    Hardly typical, this case, in any way.

                    The sexual interests of the family members are unusual perhaps. But are there any statistics whatsoever to suggest that practitioners of these activities are prone to violent crimes? That, I don’t know.

                    And even if there were such statistics, would that prove anything?

                    One thing that we do know is that the suspects here are rather unusual people. It is often folly to attempt to apply statistics to such individualistic persons.

                • 07/22/2011 at 6:54 PM

                  Alt, I just don’t think we can determine guilt by previous history, although I think it is an important factor to consider.

                  People are just too complicated to expect clear consistency all the time.

                  People can kill out of passion when they have never done any thing criminal or unkind before.

                  Certainly, if someone has a history, it might help me form an opinion as a juror, but it wouldn’t end the discussion.

                  Same for a lack of history or a history of good works. Something to consider, but it is not the deciding factor, at least for me.

                  • Alternateguy
                    07/22/2011 at 7:03 PM


                    Agreed. History is just one thing to consider. Motive is another. But, alas, everything seems to remain a mystery.

                    • 07/22/2011 at 7:16 PM

                      Hi Alt.

                      Agree with you on those points completely.

                • Cat from Cleveland
                  07/23/2011 at 8:13 AM

                  We’d all like to think that there would be warning signs. Its just not always the case. Google “Christian Nielsen” and read about the murders at the Black Bear B&B in Maine. There are many similar stories.

            • 07/22/2011 at 6:49 PM

              Why Clio, or should I say Ms. Marple/Dr. Freud? Where did you get your psychology degrees?

              “Were they raised to lie about who they were and about shat they did?” is a great question, but we will never know, and there is no way for us to really know these things.

              But thanks for your reference to “Virginia Gentlemen” and the Cavaliers.

              • Clio
                07/23/2011 at 7:34 AM

                LOL, you are welcome, Mr. Cavalier in a temporary exile, I trust, in the Land of Lincoln. Speaking of Sigmund, was your reference to “shat” a Freudian slip?

                The question above probably should be answered by Joe and Michael giving interviews to the Editors of this blog. Sunshine disinfects!

  19. Bill Orange
    07/20/2011 at 4:27 PM

    RE: The Intruder Theory

    In all honesty, the biggest “tell” that I’ve seen in this case–aside from the body in the guest bedroom–has been the behavior of the defense lawyers and their strategy at trial. They have, at all times, acted like a legal team that was trying to use every play in the book to get guilty people off. They have never, in my opinion, acted as though it were even possible that their clients were NOT somehow involved in the death of Robert Wone.

    One of the defense lawyers previously posted that, as a defense lawyer, you don’t really WANT to know if your client is guilty or not, because it hampers your ability to defend your client effectively. But that’s really only true if your client is guilty. If your client is truly innocent of the crime, and you KNOW this (and keep in mind that Joe Price is a lawyer and was reportedly heavily involved in the defense), then you have an enormous advantage over the prosecution–you know that they’re wrong, and you can both exonerate your client and further the cause of justice by offering an alternative theory of the crime.

    I have seen NO attempt by the defense to do this. They have made no serious effort to obtain information about other potential suspects. This has become clear based on their filings in the civil case. If the defendants were innocent, they would’ve at least considered the possibility that Kathy Wone hired someone to kill her husband. They would have demanded every piece of information that the police had on Kathy Wone. They didn’t, as evidenced by their filings in the civil suit. They also would’ve considered the possibility that Michael Price could’ve done this, particularly after his alibi witness invoked his fifth amendment rights on the stand. (Michael Price did, after all, burglarize the house later that year.) Again, they did not call him as a witness, if only to point out that he could have entered the house with the intent to steal something from the guest bedroom and stabbed someone that was unexpectedly found there. They didn’t ask Kathy Wone if Robert had seemed unusually upset about a bizarre situation at work (either at the old job or the new one) that somehow lead to his murder.

    As I’ve said before, the defense team has no obligation to find the “real killer”, but if they thought for a moment that their clients were actually innocent, they would have had a powerful incentive to investigate other potential suspects. As far as I can tell, they didn’t make any real effort to do this. Which leads me to be believe that they didn’t need to–they already knew who the “real killer” was.

  20. 07/20/2011 at 6:10 PM

    Hi Bill O:

    One thing in your post I feel a need to discuss. You are concerned that the defense counsel have done nothing to prove an intruder theory or other theories in the case. You feel justified in saying this because the filings and discovery by the defendants’ attorneys don’t indicate it or ask for certain information.

    Please understand that anything filed with the court must be provided to the other side. Anything the defense team is doing “behind the scenes” will not be reflected in anything filed with the court, or in discovery requests.

    I would be willing to bet up to $5 that the defense has hired private investigators to follow different leads and have done quite a bit that no one will ever know about.

    I would be very surprised if the defendants’ counsels did not come up with an intruder or assassin theory for trial. They are going to want to show the jury how this could have been done without any defendant’s involvement.

    I differ greatly from your view of the defense counsel. They got their clients all aquitted in the criminal trial. That was a great feat for their clients. Again, the big deal here is criminal claims. The worst that can happen with a civil trial is a money judgment, a criminal trial can result in your freedom or life being taken away.

    I don’t view the defense counsel as treating their clients as guilty, as you suggest in your first paragraph. I don’t see that at all. They are using all possible means to protect their clients, and that is what they are paid to do. My opinions of course.

    • Clio
      07/20/2011 at 10:04 PM

      Five whole dollars, wow — hey big spender!

      I’m sure that Culuket, being the Machiavellian “friend” whom he has always been, may have hired “opposition research” folk to dig up dirt on the Wones rather than to find the “real killers” — why would one waste money on what one knows is not there?

      Why would one take the 5th when one has nothing to hide or to lose? Full disclosure from the trouple would make all of this speculation go away.

      • 07/22/2011 at 5:51 PM

        Oh dear Clio, now you are just being silly. You take the 5th for one reason and one reason only…there is a criminal investigation going on against you.

        While I know that if you were a defendant in this case that you would have demanded that the police torture you to show that you had nothing to hide and you would not answer the police’s answers but assume what they know and just talk and talk and talk,……

        Most normal people would do exactly what the defendants did, answer all questions and give samples. Once it was clear to you that the police, no matter what you said, were targeting and concentration on you for charges, including murder, a normal person would “lawyer up.”

        And I know that you, if you were a defendant in this case, would have written many letters to the editor and stand in front of the police station every day and yell your life story and every single fact having to do with
        anything, no criminal attorney worth anything would allow you to do that, or represent you if you would do such things. Thus, you could probably not be able to obtain a lawyer, or a good one, unless you followed his or her directions and instructions.

        I realize that your world might end up in faster police investigations, arrests, etc. But, fortunately, our world that we actually have to live in, is not so easy.

        Tell us more, dear Clio, about this world of yours? Sounds lovely.

        • Clio
          07/23/2011 at 7:57 AM

          The 5th is there to prevent self-incrimination. If there is no criminal activity, then there is no need for the protection. Why would one raise suspicions by using the 5th to blunt routine questions about one’s current residence? It’s an abuse, however legal or should I say — legalistic, of our constitutional rights that may make the masses cynical about their utility.

          Joe, however flawed, was an advocate for an unpopular cause: he of all people, I would expect, would be leading the charge to find the “real killers”, even if he remains a person of interest to the police. But, he has chosen to flee to a backyard pool in Miami Shores: the always garrulous Price now eerily gagged by lawyers and his own self-interest. Ironic!

          • Alternateguy
            07/23/2011 at 9:59 AM


            No lawyer, here, as everyone knows. But it’s my thinking that if one only takes the fifth only on specific questions, where they know that they are guilty of something, then questioners could pretty much zero in on anything the suspect wishes to hide. This would provide little protection against one’s self-incrimination.

            There are many things, which can lead to ones indictment for something, if the law really wants to make a show of it. Illegal drugs, witness tampering, evidence tampering and willfully making false statements among a few. As I understand it, Lawyers speak to lawyers and defendants speak through their lawyers for a reason.

            As others have posted here, we have no reason to believe that Joe and his attorneys have not been working behind the scenes to find the “real killers.” Such investigations are seldom made public.

            Though “the always garrulous Price has….chosen to flee to a backyard pool in Miami Shores:” he show no fear (or so some posters here have repeatedly said,)of any intruder/murderer whatsoever. (Really?)

            Who, then, is he supposed to be afraid of? Pavarazzi? Bea? You?

            What’s your eerie theory here, dearie?

            • Clio
              07/23/2011 at 4:02 PM

              If Joe is truly innocent, then he has nothing of which to be afraid. He is not known to be shy. He apparently loves to hear himself talk, and so there is nothing stopping him from dispelling the speculation by telling everyone what he couldn’t tell Tara in that email.

              • 07/23/2011 at 4:49 PM

                Oh, Dear Clio. You seem wise, both in history and the classics. What’s up, Doc?

                As to your first sentence:

                “If Joe is truly innocent, then he has nothing of which to be afraid.”

                You are so naive, I wonder if this could be your evil twin writing this, who knows nothing of the real world, but lives in a fantasy world where only the truely guilty get years in prison or the death sentence.

                Again, that would be a wonderful world. Too bad it is not the one we live in.

                I would like you to come to Illinois and speak to the number of people, some on death row, that have been exonerated by DNA or other evidence, showing them not only not guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, but innocent of the charges pressed against them, for which they were prosecuted by zealous prosecutors and jurors enamored with “law and order” and not really for the truth. I’m sure the same is true in the Washington, DC area. Kiki?

                You would really put your life in the hands of the bumbling DC police, as shown in their investigation in this case?

                As Saturday Night Live says in skits: REALLY?

                You know this thoroughly, it has been raised many times on here. Is this a fact that you just ignore, or are you purposely baiting?

                What about your credibility when you make such a silly ridiculous statement. Don’t you care to maintain that?

                I hope you are never arrested, Bea, especially for anything serious.

                But if you are, or a loved one or family member is so arrested, Please Please Please don’t give them any advice whatsoever, unless it is to immediately, do not stop, contact a good defense criminal attorney IMMEDIATELY.

                Kiki? Where are you?

                I would expect this from others, rather than from you.

                It is personally disappointing to me.

                • 07/23/2011 at 8:03 PM

                  Dept of Corrections:

                  My paragraph in the post above, which says:

                  “I hope you are never arrested, Bea, especially for anything serious.”

                  ….should have been directed to Clio. Sorry.

                  But, I hope Bea is never arrested also, especially for anything serious.

                • Clio
                  07/23/2011 at 8:14 PM

                  Bruce, honey, if I am ever arrested — which is as likely as the intruder theory is true, then I will tell “the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth,” so help me God(dess.)

                  But, in this even more remote scenario — if I had committed a crime but wanted to get away with it, I would have the Editors to contact you and Kiki to shill for me. Your acting and scripting would wow the court room audiences for sure!

                  • steve
                    07/24/2011 at 7:45 AM

                    I doubt that any attorney would retain you, except Bea. Plus, the police will need help from Queen Victoria to translate your “truth” stories.

                    This reminds me of JP. Perhaps, he was on the same boat (had Clio been arrested and could not stop telling the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth despite the fact that she can also invoke the Miranda protection during her interrogations) that the best thing to handle him was to insert the Fifth to make his client “shut up,” or stop talking to yourself out loud.

                    Just saying.

                • Clio
                  07/24/2011 at 11:41 AM


                  I do salute your and Kiki’s attempts to help to exonerate indigent and often undereducated people who are targeted by police who, like all government officials, need to look like they are successful, even when they are not.

                  The defendants here are well-off and overeducated; they know their rights and they have retained some of the best legal talent that Daddy’s money can buy. If they are truly innocent, they are rich and confident enough to not abuse the Fifth.

                  • 07/25/2011 at 1:21 PM

                    Unfortunately, Dear Clio, the 5th, as opposed to taxes, is applied to all, no matter if the person is “rich and confident.”

                    There is no such “rich and confident” exception to the use of the 5th.

                    If you feel that this is unfair, I would suggest you write your congressperson.

            • Clio
              07/23/2011 at 4:08 PM

              Steve (or Denton) — I think that Bruce, Kiki, and even Alt can represent their side well enough without your jarringly incoherent blurbs. As per AZ — Team Price, discipline your electronic posse, please!

            • Bill Orange
              07/24/2011 at 9:57 AM


              Here, at last, is something we agree on. The 5th Amendment protects you against incriminating yourself against CRIMINAL charges (i.e., it protects you from the government), not CIVIL charges (i.e., it does not protect you from questions from other people). OJ Simpson is probably the classic example of this.

              As you yourself point out, “…if one only takes the fifth only on specific questions, where they know that they are guilty of something, then questioners could pretty much zero in on anything the suspect wishes to hide.” That is EXACTLY what I would characterize as an “adverse inference” in a civil trial. The fact that they have chosen to answer some questions and not others STILL can’t be used against them at a future criminal trial. But I really can’t see how anyone would not find them liable for all charges, based on a preponderance of the evidence, using exactly the logic that you have used.

              Can you?

          • susan
            07/23/2011 at 1:01 PM

            Hi Clio,

            You are absolutely right that some people plead the 5th because to answer otherwise would be self-incriminating. Courts are filled with records of the principals in criminal cases doing that and witnesses. If you look up the 5th, self-incrimination and the Constitution only you will see one of the purposes of the 5th is to protect against “Self incrimination.” If you did NOTHING wrong, no need for protection against self-incrimination. On the other hand, and to be fair, some may take the 5th because they are afraid their self-incriminating bit of evidence might lead to a suggestion of a greater role in a crime. But when it comes to such basic questions as asked of the trouple, ones that are basic fact and wouldn’t be incriminating, you wonder if they aren’t blatantly abusing the priviledge of using the 5th.

    • Bill Orange
      07/21/2011 at 11:43 PM


      The defendants got into a fight in the civil trial with the police over whether or not they should have access to all of the police’s materials relating to Kathy Wone. Based on this, I am concluding that the defendants didn’t already have this information, because if they DID have it, then they wouldn’t be asking for it now. To me, this clearly indicates that they didn’t ask for this information during the criminal trial, when they would have had a right to the information. I can’t see how they would have NOT have asked for this information, unless they were already certain that Kathy Wone had no involvement in her husband’s death. And the only way they could really know that is if they knew who WAS responsible for his death. (Unlike Alternateguy, I would say that if Robert Wone was killed by some shadowy assassin, the person who’s during the hiring is most likely the victim’s spouse, not someone affiliated with the victim’s new workplace.) Like you, I would assume that they had PI’s dig into Kathy Wone’s life and finances, but I’m still stunned that they didn’t also ask for everything they could get their hands on during discovery.

      Now obviously, the criminal attorneys ultimately didn’t need this information at trial. But it would be extremely useful to the civil attorneys (and I think that there’s been some “carry-over” between the cases) in terms of the statute of limitations argument, because if the police told Kathy Wone they thought the defendants did it (or vice versa) at a certain time, then the defendants can reasonably argue that that’s when the clock should start for the statute of limitations. Joe Price has got to be kicking himself over not asking for this information when he had the chance.

      While I agree with you that the defense team should get credit for getting all of their clients found not guilty on all charges, it’s got to be one of the worst set of “not guilty” verdicts in modern legal history, considering the judge’s written ruling. In the interview of Bernie Grimm afterwards, I thought Grimm looked like a man who knew that (a) he had just helped three people get away with murder, and (b) he knew that the judge was basically calling him on it. He did NOT look like a man who knew that he had just prevented an innocent man from being wrongfully imprisoned.

      • 07/22/2011 at 5:37 PM

        Hi Bill O:

        Thanks for your post. It seems that much of what you say is based on some assumptions, which I, surprise surprise, don’t accept.

        First, you assume that the defendants got into “a fight” with the police in the civil case over records regarding and investigations regarding Mrs. Wone, therefore, the defendants must not have asked for those records in the criminal trial.

        That assumption really makes no sense. The defendants had very good and multiple attorneys representing them in the criminal case. They would have demanded to see everything that the prosecution has. Even if they thought they had it themselves, they would have demanded to see what exactly it is that the prosecution has. No attorney in any case wants the other side to have things they don’t have or have not seen. I will make another huge bet, up to $5, that the defendants’ attorneys asked for everty single piece of paper or documents of any kind from the prosecution. They would have asked for everything that the prosecution had as a matter of routine criminal discovery.

        Kiki, agree?

        I disagree with you entirely that the criminal attorneys were not effective at the criminal trial, and the judge’s opinion can just be chalked up to being a wacky decision. Please read the judge’s decision again. The defendants’ attorneys were able to put “reasonable doubt” in the judge’s mind, and it translated into the written opinion. Considering that most people thought their defense was a lost cause, they got the result they wanted. Some would call that being brillant.

        Your post says that you say Bernie Grimm afterwards, and he “looked” to you like a man who knew that he just helped three people get away with murder (um…they weren’t charged with murder, Bill O). And he knew that the judge was basically calling him on it. No, the judge did exactly what Bernie Grimm wanted the judge to do. He could care less about dicta. He was successful at the criminal trial.

        I don’t mean to be rude, but I think you “looked” at Bernie Grimm with a huge bias after the criminal trial because you didn’t like the result. You don’t think that colored in any way your impressions of him? If not, I hope you can understand how others might think you would be looking through some glasses of your own making.

        Thus you saw what you wanted (or needed) to see. Thank goodness that it is unlikely any judge would allow you to testify as to what you thought you saw when you looked at Bernie Grimm after the criminal trial, since it is simply speculation.

        Of course he didn’t look like a man who knew “that he had just prevented an innocent man from being wrongfully imprisoned,’ to you. There were no innocent men on trial in the criminal case, to you.

        Bill O, you may be the most objective person in the world, but I still wouldn’t put one cent of value on your impressions of Bernie Grimm unpon hearing and seeing him after the criminal trial. It’s simply a distraction. Nor would I care what Abraham Lincoln’s impression was or Albert Einstein’s.

        Just my stupid opinions.

        • Bill Orange
          07/24/2011 at 10:30 AM


          I’ll take your $5 bet. I think it was VERY clear from the public filings in the civil case that there was additional information that the defendants wanted from the police regarding their (the police’s) interactions with Kathy Wone. Furthermore, I think it was clear that this was information that they did not already have, because it would’ve gone into their “statute of limitations” filings if they had already had it.

          “He [Bernie Grimm] could care less about dicta. He was successful at the criminal trial.” I’m sure Grimm is chalking this up as a win and moving on with his life, but I seriously doubt that “he could care less about dicta”. I’m guessing he was a wee bit annoyed about the written ruling, which you and I both agree was “wacky”. If you’re willing to call him up and ask him about it, I’m happy to make another $5 bet on this.

          As to the way Grimm looked after the trial, I understand completely that it has no evidentiary value and would never be admitted in court. But my impression of him (and others can chime in here, if they’d like) was that he looked like a man who’d just had to euthanize his dog, not like a man who had just kept three wrongly-accused men out of jail. You are, of course, free to agree or disagree with this impression, and I would not expect it to EVER have any merit in a courtroom. It’s just my humble opinion of the matter.

          Finally, I feel the need to remind everyone here that I am NOT an objective observer here. I knew Joe Price in college. We were not close, but I interacted with him enough to have an opinion about him. And I can tell you that if you had asked me 20 years ago, “Who in your class do you think is most likely to end up with someone stabbed to death in their guest bedroom?”, Joe Price would have been #2 on the list. (#1, for the other W&M alums on here, would have been Tom Gill, who went on to win the “2000 Sexiest Bachelor in America Pageant” on the Fox network.) I also knew Lisa Desjardins (nee Goddard), and I’ve defended her integrity several times on here.

          • Clio
            07/25/2011 at 10:23 PM

            Whatever happened to Mr. Gill? Has he managed to avoid any taint of scandal?

            • Bill Orange
              07/25/2011 at 11:19 PM

              I haven’t kept up with him, but a google search leads me to believe he’s working for the Virginia Beach life guards. I’m not getting any hits when I pair his name with “body in guest bedroom”.

  21. AnnaZed
    07/22/2011 at 1:50 PM

    Oh alt, how are we meant to reconcile these two assertions of yours?

    “…Apparently happily married couples can murder one another based on sides of their life that others don’t see.”

    “…In trying to accuse some adult of an extreme crime, shouldn’t we at least have some history of something foreshadowing such an extreme act?”

    Are you saying that only heterosexuals can commit murder without any foreshadowing (as it were) of violent events in their prior lives?

    You are starting to natter a bit; one wonders if this foreshadows (as it were) some sort of cognitively dissonant eruptions from the civil negotiations in this case.

  22. Clio
    07/22/2011 at 2:14 PM

    If Joe was so transparent with everyone, then why did he keep the arrangement with Mr. Ward a secret?

  23. Alternateguy
    07/22/2011 at 6:32 PM

    An easy read and one that has been very oddly neglected.

    Question. How do we know that that particular magazine was the only reading material lying around? And can we imagin a situation where the finders sort of exaggerated exactly what page the current issue of the New Yorker was opened up to? ( I can.)

    When I finish a New Yorker artical, I turn to the next page so that I can read more tomorrow. Now, when I was fifteen, I might have taken a copy of some magizine in to the John with me to further enjoy, but it would most probably not have been the New Yorker. I suppose for some snobs, TNY is a turn-on magazine. But not for most people, I think.

    • Alternateguy
      07/22/2011 at 6:43 PM

      Sorry, forgot to spell check,

    • Hoya Loya
      07/22/2011 at 7:17 PM


      Let’s not place undue emphasis on the New Yorker. On it’s own, it probably means nothing. Just as the books on death and decomposition mean nothing on their own (after all, AnnaZed owns them too). And the “missing” knife probably does mean nothing. And the S&M guides with the highlighted passages and the e-stim and the restraints. And that all of the above were found across the hall from the crime scene in the room of the only resident without an alibi.

      But sometimes I think there is an element in this crime of f***ing with the police. The weird pose mirroring the magazine “stupidly” left open to that page. The semen in the rectum, sure sign of a sexual assault that turns out to be from — the victim! The mouth guard. The drafted but unsent emails. The “unlocked” door. And , if one is convinced it happened (which I’m not), the knife switch.

      With signs of a clear break in, defensive wounds and an alibi for the third resident, I’d be more inclined to chalk the magazine up to coincidence. But given the overall picture, NOT.

  24. Bill 2
    07/25/2011 at 12:01 AM

    “Do you chalk off all of the good and thoughtful things that Joe Price has done for others…”

    None of that will really live on in the memory of future generations.

    Several years ago, I attended a Bach concert played on one of the finest baroque organs in Europe. It’s amazing to realize it was built in the early 1940s when all kinds of horror was taking place. Yet, one man, with a great love of music brought together some of the finest organ builders available. He also brought in fantastic craftsment to create the baroque case and trim for this magnificent organ. It’s installed in a beautiful Alpine church and generation after generation has been able to hear sublime concerts simply because this man enabled this organ to be built. Tens of thousands have heard this fantastic music — all because one man made it happen. His name will surely be remembered by future generations.

    • Bill 2
      07/25/2011 at 2:18 PM

      So for the fool (I’m being kind and holding back) who wants to paint Joseph Price in a favorable light simply because he did a few freebies for people, I’d like to mention that the man who put up the funding for the baroque organ and brought together some of Europe’s finest craftsmen to create it, is also a man named Joseph. There’s not the slightest doubt that his name will go down in history books although I don’t think Joseph Goebbels will be remembered for his devotion to great music.

      • 07/25/2011 at 2:41 PM

        Bill O:

        Honestly, I’m not trying to paint JP in a favorable light. At no time have I tried to paint him as a saint. Please point out to me where I have done so, if I am incorrect.

        I just feel that we don’t have to use any such labels as you suggest. Trying to find the answer to WMRW is best by applying an objective analysis and not pigeon holing people into names or speculative roles. I do believe that Monsieur Poirot and Ms. Marple and most law enforcement (not neccessarily the DC police) would agree.

        Feel anyway you want about the trouple. No one is stopping you.

        • Bill Orange
          07/25/2011 at 4:12 PM

          I think you’re mixing up your Bills. I’m the colored one. This is Bill 2’s thread.

          • 07/25/2011 at 4:25 PM

            Sorry, Bill O. You’re right.

          • Cat from Cleveland
            07/25/2011 at 5:23 PM

            All the more reason to select a unique avatar. . .

      • alternateguy
        07/25/2011 at 2:48 PM

        Bill 2,

        To me, you seem to think like that Joe, who’s work inspired Arthur Miller to write his great play.

        • Cat from Cleveland
          07/25/2011 at 5:19 PM

          OK, I’ve held my breath and counted to ten, and then I did it again and again.

          Please, please tell me that you did not just intend to tell someone that you think they “think like” Joseph Goebbels? Please tell me I read you comment wrong and that is not what you intended?

          In litigation, I often think that I see the worst of non-criminal human behavior. Yet, I’m still able to be shocked by the lack of civility displayed by some on this blog.

          It is possible to debate ideas without resorting to personal attack. If you want your ideas to be heard, avoid personal attacks. And before anyone responds to me by telling me someone else started it, was worse, or that your conduct is justified in this case because. . . please stop and remember that we are all responsible for our own behavior.

          • 07/25/2011 at 5:51 PM

            Ok, someone please help me here.

            First, I can’t figure out an Arthur Miller connection to Joseph Goebbels. I am generally familiar with his plays, but I know of no “great plays” or any kind of play by Miller that deals with Goebbels. Help! Clio?????

            Second, the only character of “Joe” that I know of in Arthur Miller’s plays is in All My Sons.

            Third, Cat, I think you were responding to Alt. because his post included the words “think like” as does yours, in quotes. Correct?

            Fourth, Alt, what are you refering to in your Joe and Arthur Miller post. Please explain.

            Fifth, I realize that Bill2 made reference (first) to Goebbels, but I didn’t take it that he was calling anyone on here a “Goebbels.” I think he was making a reference to JP. That is outlandish, but not too surprising on this blog.

            Do we have any Arthur Miller scholars on here that could help me out? Thanks.

            • alternateguy
              07/25/2011 at 6:10 PM

              Hey, Sorry. The play is The Crucible, about witch-hunting. It was inspired by Joe McCarthy, a guy who used to destroy people based on little, if any, concrete evidence.

              • Bill Orange
                07/25/2011 at 6:27 PM

                Again, I feel obligated to point out that there was a body in the guest bedroom. There is very substantial, solid evidence that a serious crime occurred here, so the comparison isn’t really all that accurate.

                • alternateguy
                  07/25/2011 at 6:50 PM

                  Bill O,

                  I suppose you are right, as usual.

                  Not a great analogy on my part.

                  However, bad behavior can lead to bad behavior. Joe McCarthy could only do his thing because the nation was living in fear. The Nazis, because the German People had been mistreated.

                  In responding to evil, we must make a great effort to behave in a measured and reasoned manner, and not escalate the evil.

          • alternateguy
            07/25/2011 at 6:00 PM

            Sorry, Cat.

            I wouldn’t compare anyone here to a Nazi. The play I referred to is The Crucible, about witch-hunting. (Sometimes applicable here I think.)

            I know, I behaved badly. I shouldn’t have responded to him, even though Bill 2 did unkindly call me a fool and then compared Joe Price to Dr. Goebbels.

            • 07/25/2011 at 6:02 PM

              Alt, who is the “Joe” in reference to The Crucible?

            • Bill 2
              07/25/2011 at 6:17 PM

              I did NOT compare Price to Goebbels. I was comparing GOOD to EVIL. Since one person would have difficulty in comprehending, I chose a major evil doer to show that someone doing something good that benefits mankind can also do evil that wrecked the lives of millions.

              This is in reply to: “Do you chalk off all of the good and thoughtful things that Joe Price has done for others as simply being self serving? How can a Joe Price or anyone else ever win under that style of analysis?”

              Since some fool is claiming claiming that I’m being unfair in my opinion of Joe Price, I wanted to give an example of Good vs. Evil that might possibly get through.

              • AnnaZed
                07/25/2011 at 7:14 PM

                Bill 2, I’m surprised at you. You should know better. According to Godwin this thread should actually be closed: Was that your intention?

                • Bill 2
                  07/25/2011 at 8:09 PM

                  Ha! I knew about that “law” but didn’t know the exact name. Thanks, AZ. Of course, I wasn’t comparing anyone to a Nazi but that does come out in Alt’s twisted version. We can always be sure that he’ll twist anything posted by people who really want to know the truth about the death of Robert Wone.

                  Several weeks ago he attempted to paint me as being prejudiced. I don’t have the slightest idea what that twisted attempt was about.

                  I’ve used the Goebbels story to illustrate Good vs. Evil several times. When I sat at that concert, the music was sublime – BUT – I had no idea of the Goebbels connection until later. I doubt if I could have enjoyed it had I known. I was speaking to a bunch of church musicians one time and we had a rousing discussion as to the idea of replacing the organ or keeping it there.

                  Back on topic, it doesn’t matter what good Price may have done, it doesn’t make up for his actions since August 2, 2006.

                  • Bea
                    07/25/2011 at 8:19 PM

                    I wonder if Joe has done any charitable works since he was let go at Arent Fox. Does it only do so if he get “credit” for it or his name in the paper or was it genuinely for the good works? Sure seems like he’s had a lot more time on his hands:)

                    • Bill 2
                      07/25/2011 at 8:47 PM

                      Maybe he’s in charge of the appointment book for the love of his life. He may also help him keep track of his income and tips.

                  • AnnaZed
                    07/26/2011 at 3:38 AM

                    I don’t know Bill. I saw where you were going from your first teaser post and almost cautioned you not to go there. I think Godwin is still in effect.

          • Bill 2
            07/25/2011 at 6:06 PM

            No, that’s not what I’m saying. I’m pointing out that people who do things that can make a positive impact in some areas, can also be the perpetrators of horrendous things.

            When someone tells me that I ignore a few “good and thoughtful things” that Price has done, I want to point out that it doesn’t matter at all. I’m not ignoring what good he may have done in judging him. What good he may have done at one time, gets pushed to the side by the fakery and lies involved in the Wone case.

            If you didn’t see the Goebbels name, one could imagine that the music lover was a great patron of the arts when in actuality, he was a monster.

            I’m just over the bleeding heart who discounts the known facts in this case simply because a “friend” says Price is a nice guy and therefore must be innocent.

            • alternateguy
              07/25/2011 at 6:31 PM

              OK, Bill 2.

              I guess being a “bleeding heart” is a little better than being a “fool.”

              I’d really appreciate it if you would take the time to specify any “known fact” that you see me discounting. But please, if I seem to be a bit slow, be specific and tell me where you got each item, and how you know that it is, indeed, a fact.

              I’d really appreciate that. If my friend is in danger of some Nazi, I’d like to know.

              • Bill 2
                07/25/2011 at 6:50 PM

                Stop with your stupid “please help me” ACT. Kindly people have explained things to you and pointed you in the direction of various facts but you don’t give a damn. Instead you’ll take what is said, twist it, turn it upside down and inside out, toss in a red herring, and go on your merry way pretending that your totally twisted version was provided by kindly people attempting to help you. You obviously don’t care about finding out who murdered Robert Wone as long as it isn’t the friend of your “friend.”

                • alternateguy
                  07/25/2011 at 7:15 PM

                  Bill 2,

                  It’s not I who needs help. It is the memory of Robert Wone as well as the quest to find out who murdered him.

                  In order to attain that end, we must look for facts that don’t vanish into thin air as soon as they are scrutenized.

                  That’s worth some serious analysis, I’d say. Some real effort on our part.

                  And, yes, that requires looking at things from all sides and turning things over and over. Questioning everything
                  from every viewpoint.

                  Don’t forget that the man from Missouri pointed out that the knee-jerk reaction to blame everything on communests was a red herring. The knee jerk reaction here is, it think, is to blame everything on the triple. I could be wrong about that, but we will never know untill we feel free to test every fact and scrutinize each element from every angle.

                  (Speaking of doing our homework) And, yes, I’m lazy, just like everyone else.

                  • Bill Orange
                    07/26/2011 at 11:26 AM

                    You know what would also help? Fewer than 400 5th Amendment invocations. That way, “questioning everything
                    from every viewpoint” would lead to a few more answers.

  25. susan
    07/25/2011 at 12:27 AM

    I wonder how much, if at all, Arent Fox has played a role in the civil suit. I did some Googling and a few law-related sites brought up how Arent Fox was being brought or dragged into the civil case and how it isn’t good for a law firm’s publicity. Did they ever give the Wone’s the emails they sought btw JP and DW and JP and VZ? Was “spousal privilege” ever recognized by the court?

    • susan
      07/25/2011 at 12:28 AM

      Apologize for the placement of the post above. Meant for it to be at the bottom of the page as it is not connected to the other posts.

      • Cara
        07/26/2011 at 12:42 AM

        Susan, as you may know, Arent Fox’s new offices are one of the largest construction projects going on in DC right now (after a few too many years of zero commercial construction in town). I don’t have the answer to your question regarding the emails, but I will say that just having the Arent Fox name on a construction sign is great PR for them.

        • susan
          07/26/2011 at 9:39 AM

          Thanks, Cara. In fact, I did not know that, so thanks for pointing that out. I see so much construction going on all over and had no idea they were building a new site. I will have to check it out.

          I still wonder if they turned over the requested records. And despite their bldg new digs, I did read in law journals that that sort of attention is very unwanted. One article was dedicated to how to vet law firm employees to root out anyone who might be a problem later on.

          • Bill Orange
            07/26/2011 at 11:38 AM

            My guess is that they handed everything over immediately. The office porn would’ve been just cause for firing him even if it hadn’t been discovered during a murder investigation. Given that it WAS discovered during a murder investigation, I would guess that Joe Price went under the bus pretty quickly, and Arent Fox is doing everything it can to keep its name out of this, which means turning over everything that isn’t in some way considered privileged.

  26. susan
    07/26/2011 at 9:35 AM

    Thanks to the editors, again, for this informal blog, which all of you created on your personal time and which has garnered attention from media worldwide. This site brings together all published court records on the case, backgrounds on the principles involved, commentary from the public (including base commentary from those who would like to see this attention to RW’s murder dissappear) and more. Thanks for the time you dedicate to maintaining this page and keeping the cause for justice in this case alive. All your work here is voluntary and people who follow this site appreciate it.

    • susan
      07/26/2011 at 9:37 AM

      Meant for this to post at the very bottom of this page, especially in response to comments from denton/steve and another.

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