Opening Statement for the People
Guilt Phase: By Rick Distaso
June 1, 2004
DISTASO: Thank you, your Honor. Ladies and gentlemen, think back with me to December 24th, 2002, Christmas Eve in Modesto, California. At 5:15 in the evening, Sharon Rocha was getting ready to prepare her Christmas Eve dinner. She was planning on having her daughter Laci, and the defendant Scott over for dinner that night at 6:00 o'clock. She was doing the things that everybody does to get ready for a Christmas Eve dinner. Finishing getting the table ready. Finish putting presents under the tree. Working on dinner. It was a normal Christmas Eve evening in Modesto for her.
At 5:15, some time around there, the phone rings. She picks it up, and she hears, it's the defendant, Scott, her son-in-law. And she hears him ask this question. He says, "Mom, is Laci there with you?" She says no. Like a questioning no, like why would she be? You are all not supposed to be here until 6:00 o'clock tonight. He says well, you know, I came home; he didn't say where he'd been. He says, I came home and her car was in the drive, and her, I went in the backyard, as they do in this house. You will hear, you go into the backyard. I found our dog with his leash still attached. And she says, well, no, you know, she's not here. I haven't heard from her all day. He says, she tells him, you know, have you called any of her friends? Maybe they came and took her, maybe she's over there, doing something with them. He says, no, I haven't. She says, okay, well, why don't you do that? Call her friends, and then call me right back. So they hang up.
A few minutes go by, and she knows it isn't very long. She is going to tell you she knows it wasn't too long, because she remembers thinking that, boy, it was kinds of a quick time for him to have called all of her friends. But he calls back, and he says, the second time, he says, you know, I talked to her friends, and I haven't been able to locate her. And he says you know, "Mom, Laci is missing." And it was those words and the inflection in his voice, and the whole circumstances of the conversation. And right then Sharon Rocha knew that things were very seriously wrong. She said, have you checked with the neighbors? Maybe she is out delivering Christmas cookies at the last minute, something like that. Have you made any efforts around the neighborhood to locate her? He said, no, he hadn't. So she said, why don't you go do that, and as soon as you are done with that, call me back. So they hang up.
She tells her partner, Ron Grantski, they have been together for many years, you are going to hear. And he considers himself Laci's stepfather. In fact, pretty much raised her, along with Sharon. She tells him, you know, Ron, something is really wrong. Laci is missing. At that point she tells Ron to call the police, and he does that.
Meanwhile, the defendant's out checking with the neighbors. You are going to hear from a number of the neighbors that were, that live in the neighborhood. There are only a couple that were home that day. He goes across the street. And you are going to hear that the neighbors catty-corner to their house left their house that morning at 10:33. Susan Medina. She is going to tell you she knows that, because she made a phone call to her son in Los Angeles, said, hey, we're coming down for the holidays. Her phone bill shows they left at 10:33. She wasn't home.
He goes to the neighbors directly across the street from the house. You are going to see pictures of all of this in a minute. I want to talk to you about this before I do that. He goes directly to the neighbors across the street, and the neighbors that live there, Amy Krigbaum and Tara Venable. He comes walking up the drive. They have been home the entire day. They will tell you that they woke up that morning at 10:30. Amy I think played hooky from work that day. Tara was off. And they have been home the entire day, just doing normal Christmas Eve stuff, getting ready for Christmas tomorrow. They were having some family over for dinner on the 24th, and they were getting that ready. And they will tell you that when he came up, the defendant asked them, he said, well, have you seen Laci today? You know, I can't find her. She said, well, no, we haven't. We have been home all day, and have been in and out of the front yard. Their house looks directly across to the Peterson home at 523 Covena. She said we haven't seen her. We have seen her car parked in the driveway all day, but the blinds were down in the house, and the house looks closed. We didn't think anybody was home. They asked, why, what's going on? What's the problem? He told them, he said, well, you know, Laci is missing. She says missing? What do you mean? Where have you been all day? He said I was out golfing all day. I just got home, and I can't find her. And I have made a couple of phone calls throughout the day to try to reach her. I wasn't able to do that.
With that, the defendant then left their house, and saw him move on down the street, presumably to check with some additional neighbors. They talked about what they should do, if anything. This is a pretty odd situation to have somebody missing on Christmas Eve. They decide we'll go out and see what we can do to help. Tara's nine-year-old son, and he was ten at the time, twelve years old. I'm sorry. He was ten at the time. And they have him wait at the house. And they are going to go out and try to help as best they can to look. That's what's going on at 523 Covena.
So let's go back to Sharon Rocha's house. And she's waiting for that third phone call. She lives in Modesto, it's a little bit across town. You got Scott out talking with the neighbors, and Sharon Rocha is back at her house. Scott then calls her back and says, you know, I checked with the neighbors. Nobody has seen Laci today. And he says, and she tells him, at this point she's kind of in full panic mode, quite frankly. She is going to tell you she's very upset. She doesn't really know what to do. She says you know what, I'm going to come over and try to help you look for her. She tells Ron, we got a serious problem, we need to get over there and help him look. She tells Scott I'll meet you down in the park. And you are going to see pictures of this in a minute.
There is a large park in Modesto. I know we're here in the Bay Area. Most of you probably are not familiar with Modesto. So you are going to see a lot of pictures today. A lot of things maybe make you a little more familiar with the situation. But where we're dealing with here, it's a small residential neighborhood in Modesto, 523 Covena. So at the end, towards the end of the street, at the end of the street there is a small footpath that leads down a steep hill into what's called Dry Creek Park. It's a large park. It's five miles long. It's fairly heavily wooded. It has a bike path down the middle, a creek running down one side. And it's got streetlights that run along the bike path. It's a heavily used park. And Laci, earlier in her pregnancy, would frequently take the dog for walks down in the park.
The reason Sharon was immediately concerned, she is going to tell you this, and she wanted to go down to the park was, earlier, late in October and in early part of November, Laci had been taking the dog for a walk down in the park, and had gotten sick. She had gotten very dizzy, felt like she was going faint. This happened on three or four occasions. She was actually told by her doctor not to walk in the, not to take the dog for walks, not to exercise any more.
At this part of her pregnancy, Sharon said that she was afraid that Laci might have taken the dog down to the park for a walk, got sick, passed out, and is now down in the park needing help. So she calls her friend Sandy Rickers, and said, Sandy, I'm not in any condition to drive. We're having a problem. Laci is missing. Can you come and pick me up and take me to the park.
Meanwhile, Ron has called the police. The police have told him stay at the house. Wherever you call from, that's where they like to meet you at. Stay at the house and we'll contact you there. Sandy and Sharon go down to the park. Ron's calling other family members while this is going on. This is probably around 6:00 o'clock now on December 24th. Ron calls Harvey Kemple, which is Laci's uncle, and he happens to have like forty people at his house for Christmas Eve dinner. He says we need help. We need people to come down and help us in the park. He said sure. All of them leave their dinner, they go meet down in the park. They all meet at a place called East La Loma Park. And it's part of the Dry Creek system. It's got a parking lot. All the family drives down there. And Sharon is talking to the defendant Scott on the phone. And said I'll meet you down there at the park. They do that.
The park at this time is pitch dark. Late. It's December 24th. So it gets dark in Modesto probably at 4:50 or so. Certainly before 5:00 o'clock. It's pitch dark down in the park. It's very foggy in Modesto at that time of year. It's foggy and it's cold. And so Sharon is down in the park. She's running around very upset. She is yelling Laci's name, of course not getting any response. She's even so concerned she's looking in trashcans trying to see what she can see. She sees Scott up ahead on the path, kind of where they met. She is yelling at him. "Scott, Scott, Scott," and she's like maybe twenty or thirty yards away. She is screaming at him. No response. She comes running up to him, and she says, you know, "What's going on?" No real response. She says, she says, well, you know what happened? Laci is missing. Well, where were you today? Fishing. Where were you fishing? Berkeley. She's getting these one-word response answers. And at the end of that, "Where are you fishing? Berkeley," the defendant walked off.
So mean while Ron Grantski has called the police. And the police were told the whole family, everybody is down at the park. They need to go down there. That's where they respond to. Officer John Evers is the first patrol officer to arrive. He speaks to Sharon and Scott, and he finds out a couple of facts. He finds out that the last person who claims to have seen Laci alive that day was Scott. He said when I left my house this morning at 9:30, Laci was home. She was going to mop the floor, and then she was going to take the dog for a walk. That's what he said her plans were that day. He also finds out that Scott says I left my house and my wife at 9:30 in the morning to go fishing in the Bay Area. That's what he tells him.
So Officer Evers is there. He's a senior patrol officer. He's a detective now. At the time he was a senior patrol officer. He is there in the park with two other officers, Officer Spurlock and Officer Letsinger. He decides to start the investigation of this case back at Scottís home at 523 Covena. He is going to tell you he does that, because the way they investigate missing persons cases is, you start at the beginning with the last person who saw the missing person, in this case Laci. So the last person who would have seen Laci, and the last place they saw Laci was down at the park, because Scott had said her plan was to walk the dog. But at the time he said, he left he said she is in the home getting ready to mop the floor, going to take the dog for a walk later.
So he moves everybody back to 523 Covena. They move out of the. Park everybody goes back to 523 Covena. That is done. Family members down there at this point, and a lot of them stay in the park. They are still searching. They have got flashlights. They are yelling and looking and looking. But those people are back now at 523 Covena, Sharon, and Laci's uncle, Harvey Kemple, the officers, Scott. And that's kinds of where they start.
Now, the patrol sergeant, that's Sergeant Duerfeldt, the patrol sergeant, he's in charge of the patrol unit that covers this portion of Modesto. And he was the officer. Here is their mindset when they are coming here. It's Christmas Eve. There is a woman who is eight months pregnant, who is missing under very mysterious circumstances
GERAGOS: objection, argumentative.
GERAGOS: How does he know what the mindset is?
JUDGE: Opening statement. Overruled. I already told the jury it's not evidence in the case. Overruled. Go ahead.
DISTASO: And they asked the family at this point, is there any reason Laci would have left voluntarily? Because in missing person cases, you are going to hear from the officers, a lot of people are reported missing who just leave for whatever reason. They said, no, there is nothing that we're aware of that would cause her to just leave voluntarily. They asked them, is there anything about her lifestyle that would make her more susceptible to being a missing person? Is there any drug problem that you are aware of? Is she involved in any kind of activity that would do that? Is there any issues with someone that might have been a problem with her? And they are told, no, there is nothing like that at all.
So they come back to the house. And while they are back at the house, the officers are kind of deciding how to start the investigation. Sergeant Duerfeldt is lining up resources to search the park. And to do that he's calling in additional patrol officers. He's trying to see if he can get some Modesto Police dog teams to come down and run through the park. And he's also working with the Sheriff's Department to see if he can get their helicopter to fly aerial over the park. The helicopter has an infrared device. What that does that is looks for heat sources on the ground. As part of that, they have to go down and clear the park, because they got to get who they know is in the park out of there, so then when they flew they are not picking up a hundred different images of searchers in the park. They want to see if they can find evidence that Laci is down there in the park. They are doing that too. They are actually sending officer teams to sweep the park looking for Laci, and also to try to get people out of there before they fly the helicopter in. That's what Sergeant Duerfeldt is going to say.
While that's going on, Harvey Kemple, Laci's uncle, walks up to Scott in the driveway and says, well, what's going on? You said Laci is missing. Can you kind of clue me in as to what is going on, what happened here? And he says, "Where were you?" And Scott tells him, "I was out golfing all day." And he says, okay. He says what happened? Well, you know, I came home and Laci wasn't there. That was it. That's about all he told him. And, again, the defendant walked off.
Officers Letsinger and Spurlock, they said, because that's the last place she was seen, like to go through into Scottís house and see if they can find her, or see if they can find evidence of what happened to her. They ask Scott, can we go in and look, you know, in your house to see if there is any evidence, something that might have happened there. Well, was she, you know, abducted from inside the house? Was there evidence of a burglary in the house? Was there evidence of forced entry? Did something bad happen in the house? Scott says they can.
So they all go into the house. When they go in there they look for a couple of things. They look at the windowsills to see, and the window locks. They might jimmy a lock. Is any window broken? Is any door kicked in? Are the doorjambs intact? Is anything missing from the home? They are looking for evidence of a burglary; they are looking for evidence of a robbery, something like that inside the house. There was nothing out of place at all. In fact, they ask Scott, is there anything missing from your home? And he says, he tells them no. As far as he can tell, nothing at all is missing. Christmas packages are under the tree. All of Laci's jewelry is still intact. Everything is there.
They said, well, are Laci's personal belongings here? Because her car is still parked in the driveway. She was driving a green Land Rover at the time. He says, you know, I don't know. So he says we'll take a look. She always hangs her purse either one of two places. Either on the, puts it on kitchen table, or she hangs it in her closet on a hook. They look on the kitchen table. It's not there. They go back in to the master bedroom, and they look in the closet. And Laci's purse is hanging there in the closet. And they are going to tell you that they opened it up, and they looked inside, and they saw her keys, her wallet, her checkbook, all of her personal items. Her glasses, her sunglass case which was inside her purse. All of her personal items, that if you left somewhere voluntarily, you would, likely would take with you. With that, they close that up, they hang that back on the hook just like they found it.
And they decide that they are going to go back outside and brief Sergeant Duerfeldt on just what they found, that there is nothing out of place here in the house. Her personal belongings are here. And kind of get some further direction. Now, Officer Spurlock is going to tell you that he's a fisherman, and as he's walking back in the back of the house towards the front, Officer Evers is in the front, Jon Evers, Officer Letsinger is behind him, Scott and Officer Spurlock, and as they are walking back, Officer Spurlock asks Scott, he says, so where were you? What was going on today? Were you working all day? He wasn't part of the conversation earlier when officers had talked to Scott and heard about the fishing. And he asked him, he said, "Where were you today? Were you working all day?" And he says, no, I was fishing. He says, "You were fishing?" He said, "Where were you fishing?" He says, "I was fishing in the Bay Area." He says okay. And they are walking and talking. He says, "What were you fishing for?" Then silence. Nothing. Then kind of a funny look on his face. Kind of gets a funny look on his face and says, well, you know. Doesn't really say anything. Officer Spurlock is looking at him like, well, what's going on? And finally Scott goes like this. He doesn't say, never says what kind of fish, or anything. He just holds up his hands about eighteen inches apart like that. Officer Spurlock gets a little quizzical. He says, "Well, what kind of bait were you using?" And he says Scott says he couldn't really tell him. He finally comes out, he says, "Well, a lure." He says, "A lure? A what kind of lure?" He says, "A silver lure." That was all he says. And Officer Spurlock says, well, you know, can I see your fishing equipment? Where do you keep all that stuff? He says. And Scott tells him I keep it at my shop.
And you are going to hear that he has a warehouse shop for his business. He's a fertilizer salesman. And it's a full of fertilizer products. And that's where he tells Officer Spurlock that he keeps his fishing equipment.
So they walk out towards the front. And when they do, when they do, he tells officer, he kind of quietly, he says, you know, Officer Spurlock says he says he was fishing all day, but he couldn't tell me what he was fishing for. Then I asked him, what bait he was using, and he couldn't really tell me that either. So Officer Evers and Letsinger and Spurlock leave. Defendant walks out in front them. Sergeant Duerfeldt is waiting for them outside. They tell him kind of what's going on. That, you know, everything they have learned kind of clue him in on that.
Meanwhile Sergeant Duerfeldt is working on getting the park searched. That is kind of goal number one at this point. At this point they have gotten the park cleared, and they have gotten the helicopter. I was going to tell you, you can see the helicopter making low fly-bys, running the FLIR. That's what it is, running the infrared device called the FLIR. Helicopter didn't find anything. Didn't find anything at all. He has officers down there searching the park. They find some homeless folks down camping by the creek, and they rousted them. You are going to hear from one of the officers, they actually kind of roust these guys three or four times trying to, did you see somebody, a woman, pregnant woman walking a dog down here? They don't come up with anything. Nobody says anything that night.
After Evers and Letsinger and Spurlock brief Sergeant Duerfeldt, he decides, based on all this stuff, he has the right, he is going to put a call into the on-call detectives. The way that works is, in with the Modesto Police Department, all of the detectives on the homicide unit are on call. In Modesto, everybody is on call. Homicides are assigned on a rotating basis. But this case at this point, a couple hours in, it is probably now about 7:00 o'clock or so on December 24, is not a homicide yet. Nobody in the Modesto Police Department believes that Laci. They find no body. All we have is a missing pregnant woman. We have her reported missing for three or four hours. You are going to hear Detective Craig Grogan is the next detective who is going to be assigned to homicide. He doesn't get the call that night. The first detective they get hold of is Detective Al Brocchini, and he was with his family up in the mountains, which is a couple of hours from Modesto, for Christmas Eve, spend Christmas up there. They get hold of him by his pager or cell phone, or something, and he comes down to respond, to do this. It takes him, I think, until about 9:30. He arrives the 523 Covena at 9:30 at night.
Things are still going on. Dry Creek Park, like I told you, is five miles long. The officers are putting in place to search the park. And, in fact, you are going to hear, over the next couple of days, from about the night of the 24th, when this first was reported, until about the 30th, almost the entire county was searched for Laci. They talked to lots of different people. They were canvassing the neighborhoods. They searched the entire park with dog teams. They ran a dive team down the entire length of the creek. You are going to hear that they searched other open areas, anywhere they could, with hundreds of volunteers in this five-day period who assisted that, basically covering the entire county. That's what they did.
At 9:30 on the 24th Detective Brocchini arrives at the house, talks to Officer Evers and Officer Letsinger and Officer Spurlock, and they brief him as to what they have learned, that Scott says he went fishing in the Bay Area. He couldn't tell him what he was fishing for, or really what type of equipment he was using to catch the fish, what kind of bait I guess you would use, the circumstance of Laci being missing. He says he left home at 9:30. They brief him on all that.
And then Detective Brocchini does what detectives do, he is going to tell you, he starts the investigation. And he starts it in the same exact way the patrol officer does, started a missing persons case, with the last person who saw the missing person, in this case Laci, and the last location that she was seen. Already he knows that. He's introduced to Scott. He talks to him. He gets the basic story, just very briefly again from him. He then asks him, do you mind if I go through the house and look basically for the same things that Officer Letsinger and Spurlock and Evers were looking for. Scott says he can. And he as walks up to the door, he sees a mop out in front, mop and a mop bucket with a little bit of water there, and two mops by the front door. He goes inside. He looks through the house. Nothing is out of place. You are going to see pictures of what it looked like in a minute.
He goes again through the house. He asked him if Laciís personal belongings here, and Scott says they are. He takes him back where they had already looked in the bedroom and again opens up the purse, sees the items in there in the clothes closet, closes it up. He then says, "You were out fishing today?" And Scott says he was. And he says, "Would you mind taking me and showing me your boat?" And he's going to tell you that he wanted to see Scottís boat that day, I mean on the 24th. And Scott says he can.
When they go back outside, before they leave to go, he says would you mind if I look in Laci's car and your car for any type of, anything that might have helped us figure out what happened to Laci. And Scott says he can. So he goes to Laciís car, and he opens up the doors. He looks inside. He finds Laciís cell phone. It's plugged into the little console cigarette lighter. And he tries to power it, finds out it doesn't have any power, and it won't hold a charge. Only works if the car is on. So the cell phone itself is not powered up. He looks through Laciís Land Rover, doesn't find anything else, he says, of interest, shuts the door.
He then goes to Scottís truck, and he opens up the door. And when he does, the door, the car you are going to see the cars were parked fairly close together. When he opens up the passenger door, sorry, the driver's door of Laci's truck, I mean Scott's truck. It bangs up against the door of Laci's car, you know. They are close together. He opens it, bangs up this, Scott tells him hold on. He says, I'll move the truck for you so it doesn't bang up against the door any more. And he says, well, you know, that's okay I'll be a little more careful. He says, wait, let me get a glove. He actually goes in and gets a leather glove. He puts it between the door of his pickup truck and Laci's car.
The detective then looks through the interior of the truck, and he finds a couple of things. Finds a loaded .22 handgun in Scottís glove box. He pulls it out, he asks him about it. He says, "What's with this?" He says, "Well, I put that there when I went pheasant hunting a couple months ago in November, and I just left it in my car." And Detective Brocchini is going to tell you that is actually a violation of the law to have a loaded handgun in your car. He is going to tell you that he seized it as evidence, and he took it then he put it in his pocket. He put it in his jacket pocket. He didn't tell the defendant. He'll tell you that he was doing that. He then looks through the back of the truck. Going to see pictures. It's a crew cab truck, four doors, and a back seat. And he's looking through there. He finds a big green canvas bag. And in the canvas bag he finds a camouflage jacket that Scott says he wore fishing that day. That's dry. He says he finds a Big 5 store bag, plastic bag that you get the stuff in when you buy something from Big 5. Got "Big 5" on there. It's got a receipt that says that items were purchased on December 20th. Inside this he's got two saltwater fishing lures that are unopened and in the packages. You will see those in a minute. And also on the receipt he sees there was a fishing pole that was bought and a two-day fishing license bought on December 20th. He leaves all the those items there in the bag.
He then goes and looks in the bed of Scottís truck, and he looks through, he sees a couple of things. He sees three large patio umbrellas; the kind people have you put them in your backyard. Sometimes you have seen these farmers markets, big canvas kind of patio umbrellas. Three of those all wrapped up in a tarp, blue tarp. He sees a brown canvas boat cover kind of wadded up and shoved in the back there. While he's looking in the back of the truck, you will see Detective Brocchini. He's a short man. He is standing up on the step side of the truck. While he's doing that, he puts his keys on the wheel hump of the bed of the pickup struck. After he's done looking in there, he asks Scott, can we go to your shop now and see your boat? And Scott says they can. They go out to get in Brocchini's car. And Detective Brocchini, Scott, and Officer Evers are all going over to Scottís shop, business which is four or so miles away, and take a look at the boat.
When they get in there Detective Brocchini goes to start his car. He realizes he doesn't have his keys. He says he can't remember where he left them. He tells Scott, he says, I left my keys in your car. I need to look. Scott opens the truck back up. They don't find them. He looks in the bed; he finds them where he left them, on the wheel hump.
Gets back in his car, and they drive to the shop. When they get to the shop, you are going to see the pictures of the shop. It's in one of those strip malls, an industrial area like a strip mall that has like little bay offices, and bays, office bays all the way down the line. There is kind of those metal put together kind of bay industrial, big industrial areas that you see. When they get there, at this point it's probably 11:00 o'clock at night on Christmas Eve. It's pitch dark, of course. There is not a soul around, because nobody is going to be at their shop at 11:00 o'clock on Christmas Eve. When they get to the shop, the officer had driven his patrol car, Detective Brocchini drove his car with Scott. They get there. There was a big bay door that you open with a chain. There is a little, I call it, I mean like I call it like a man door. The door you walk into and out of the shop. And that's a little door that they go in. They walk into the office of the shop. Scott unlocks it, they walk in. There is an office area there, there is a wall, and a window that's covered with a bunch of items. You will see a picture of that. There is another door that goes through there out into the bay portion of the shop. When they walk in, it's dark, and they are looking, shining their flashlights.
As these walk in the door, Scott says, well, there is, oh, there is no electricity in the shop. Detective Brocchini is going to tell you he didn't question him about that, didn't even really pay any attention to it. What he really wanted to see is the boat. So they shine these flashlights, they walk through there. They go out into the, into the bay area of the shop. And in there they see a, they see a couple of things. They see Scottís boat. It's a 14ífoot aluminum boat, open, with a 15 horsepower outboard motor. It's got 2 seats. It's got an, I mean a jump seat kind of in the front on a bench. Got a bench in the middle, and it's got a bench in the back with another jump seat where the driver of the boat can sit, and it's got a tiller outboard motor with a tiller.
He also sees a big trailer. Got a bunch of stuff on it. That's kind of, when you walk out of the office door here, you turn right. The trailer is right here. Kind of have to jump over the front of the little ball part of the trailer to get to where the boat is. In the back of the shop, it's just covered full of fertilizer product. In the very back of the shop there is a bathroom that you really can't get to. It's packed full of fertilizer and stuff.
When they walk in there, they go over to the boat. Detective Brocchini shines his flashlight in there, and he looks around and sees some things. I'm going to show you the pictures in a minute. But it's dark. There are no lights on in the shop. He asks Scott, can you put up the bay door? He says I'm going to shine my headlights here so I can get a better look. Scott says he will. He rolls up the bay door. Detective Brocchini turns his car around so the headlights are focusing on the boat, and he takes six pictures.
When he does that, he has his notebook which he has been taking notes with as he is talking to Scott about what's going on, Letsinger and Evers. He takes notes. He takes this notebook and puts it down in the bow of the boat. He does that, puts it down so he can hold the camera and take a picture. He does that. You are going to see pictures in a minute where his notebook is there in the bow of the boat.
And Detective Brocchini is going to tell you, he is a little embarrassed about what happens next. After they were done taking the pictures, they all went back to Modesto Police Department. They went back. Now, they closed the door, went back to the shop, locked it up, went all the way back to the Modesto Police Department. Officer Evers, Scott, and Detective Brocchini. And Detective Brocchini says, you know, I'd like to sit down with you, now, it's probably midnight at this point, and take a very detailed statement, exactly what happened. He tells him, you know, I have to do that for a couple reasons. You are the last person that saw her, and you are obviously someone who is close to her. And this is just part of the game, I mean game is not the right word. Just part of the drill, I should say. And Scott says, okay, no problem. I'll do that. As they are walking in, Detective Brocchini says, "You know what? I forgot my notebook." He says, "I can't take a statement from you unless I go over all these notes we have been working on for the last two hours." Got to go all the way back to the shop, which they do.
They get back in Detective Brocchini's car. They drive all the way back to the shop, four miles. And Scott opened up the door for him. He goes in ahead. He walks in, he goes through the door from the outside, back through the office door into the bay. Detective Brocchini shining his flashlight over there, shining it around, looking where he left his notebook. He shines it, they see it there in the boat. Scott hops over the trailer, like I told you he had to do, runs over, grabs the notebook off, hands it back to Detective Brocchini, says, "Here you go, okay, now we can go." That's what they do. They go out of the shop, they go back to Modesto Police Department Detective Brocchini takes a detailed statement from the defendant.
I want to go to the computer, not walk around so much. So I'm, going to be a little static here. Let's go to December 24th. We can take a look at exactly what Scott told Detective Brocchini he did that day. He said this. He decides to go fishing that morning because it was too cold to go golfing. He told Officer Evers that as well. He told Sergeant Evers it was a morning decision, I'm sorry, I'm going to block your way. He said it's a morning decision.
And go ahead check on that fishing. Here are the options here in the area. You aren't familiar with the fishing options available to people in Modesto, but here are the places that Scott could have gone fishing that morning when he decided to do that. There is a fishing area, Fox Grove. It's an area that is 9 miles away, has facilities for a 14 foot aluminum boat. 23 miles away is Turlock Reservoir, is another place you can go fishing. You can go fishing 19 miles away at Modesto Reservoir. Each of these locations is not far from the house at 523 Covena. 26 miles away is Mossdale Crossing. 23 miles away is Woodward Reservoir. You can see that there is one, two, three, four, five, six, seven other locations where, locations that you could go fishing near Modesto in a boat the size the defendant had.
Instead, the defendant chooses that morning to drive 86.2 miles, almost 90 miles from Modesto late in the morning to the Berkeley Marina. That's what he tells Detective Brocchini. This is what he decides to do when he is going to go fishing. He leaves home, you can see, after 9:30. What you are going to hear from a woman by the name of Kristin Reed, he tells, Scott told Officer Evers, Officer Spurlock, Detective Brocchini, Detective Grogan, I think that's it, he told all those people over a course of a bunch of different days that he left his home at 9:30 that morning. That's what he says.
You are going to hear from a woman by of the name of Kristin Reed, who was a friend of Scott and Laciís. And what she's going to tell you is on December 24th, she was actually driving to, driving to work that morning. She was running late. She knows exactly what time it was. She drove past the defendant's house, and their house at the end of the street. She lives on Covena, goes down this way. She is driving straight. She looks out of her passenger window, so she drove by just out of habit to see if there was someone there. She said she did that, she is going to tell you she did that because if she had seen the defendant or Laci, she was going to go down and say, "Hi", or something to them since it was Christmas Eve. She knows what their cars look like. She knows exactly what time it was, because I looked down at my clock right before I looked up. And at 9:39 she did this. She said she looked out the window there, and she says Laciís car was parked in the drive, and Scottís truck parked in the drive.
Go ahead, click on 9:30. When the officers went back and checked the defendant's cell phone records to see what his cell phone activity was on that particular day, they found out some information about when he left his home. Let me explain how cell phone stuff works. When you pick up your cell phone and power it on, just turn it on, nothing happens. Nobody can track you. Nobody knows where you are. Nobody knows anything. When you call somebody and your phone connects somewhere, it connects another cell phone to you. That's how it works. And the phone company, in your records, it records what cell phone tower you are using. The cell phone towers have radiuses that they cover. So if you are in this, if I'm in this cell phone tower radius, I'm talking to someone, and I move, as I am driving down the road to this one, the cell, the cell phone company transfers you from one cell phone tower to the next. That's how it works. Bounces you along. You don't know that it does it. All seamless. Seems like you are on one call that's what's happening. As that's happening, it is recording your cell phone towers where you are at. Bang, bang, bang. Okay? And also does that if you connect to your voicemail. If somebody calls you and leaves you a voicemail, it doesn't do that. If you call your voicemail, you actually have to connect to the phone company through a cell phone tower. So if you call your voicemail on the cell phone, the company knows where within what, within that radius where that phone is being used.
That's what happened that morning. At 10:08 in the morning Scott called his voicemail. And what the cell phone records show is that he was within the radius of the cell phone tower that services his home. You are going to see he made a number of calls throughout the whole investigation. And wherever Scott was at his home, he used the cell phone tower at 1250 Brighton Avenue. That's the tower that he used. At 10:08 in the morning he made a call to his voicemail and he was pinging off the cell phone tower that services his home. That call was 1 minute and 21 seconds long. That's how long it took him to check his voicemail that morning. During that call, the call transferred from the cell site that services his home to one at 10th and D Street. You can see from the chart, 10th and D Street is in the direction of his shop. There is the cell phone site tower at 10th and D Streets.
Investigator Steve Jacobson is going to talk to you during this trial about this phone stuff. He drove a police car from Scottís home in the direction of the 10th and D Street cell phone tower. What he is going to tell you is, he knows what the radiuses are covered by these cell phone tours. And it took him almost exactly 1 minute and 21 seconds to leave Scottís home, driving his car just a normal speed within the speed limit to transfer into that next cell phone, that next cell site tower, approximately the 1 minute and 21 seconds. Exact amount of time that Scott was on his phone checking his voicemail that morning.
He tells Detective Brocchini that when he leaves, Laci was watching the Martha Stewart Show. And he, on the show, remembers, that they were cooking something with meringue. When the Modesto Police Department ordered those shows from Martha Stewart for the 23rd and the 24th, what they found was Martha Stewart didn't cook anything with meringue on the 24th. She actually cooked a segment about 9:40. That show, I'm sorry, broadcast at 9:00 o'clock. It's an hour long. At 9:40, 40 minutes into the show on the 23rd, she cooks a segment with meringue. He says that he remembers Laci was doing this because that was her favorite show. That was the show she watched all the time. On the 24th Martha Stewart didn't have a segment with meringue.
He says when he left his house, Laci was wearing a white long-sleeved shirt and black pants. He says she was getting ready to mop the floors and to walk the dog.
Go ahead. This is the missing persons report that he gave to Officer Evers. He gave the exact description. He says, you can see right here, that white long-sleeved shirt and black pants. That's what he says.
He also says she was swearing a diamond ring, diamond earrings, and a diamond necklace. He's very specific about what jewelry she is wearing when he leaves that morning. You are going to hear that Laciís diamond ring was actually in the shop that day. You are also going to hear that her diamond earrings were never found, and the diamond necklace that she almost always wore was found at the house.
Scott never changes the description that he gives about the clothing that he says Laci is wearing. He tells Officer Evers that. Tells Detective Brocchini that. He tells Detective Grogan that the next day. And, in fact, that's the description that goes out on all of the reward posters and everything else, that when he left Laci was wearing black pants and a white top. In fact, you are going to hear that, you are likely going to hear numerous people called in saying they saw Laci that day wearing, walking around Modesto wearing black pants and a white shirt. You are going to hear when Laci was murdered, she was found in khaki-colored maternity pants. We're going to talk about that in a minute.
Go to one of two. You can see that he says, he told Officer Evers when he went home after 9:30, went fishing. He then returned home at 4:30, discovered his wife missing. Okay, click out. You have this. Go to the slide. He says he drives to his shop, does a little bit of work there. He sends an email. He does some other things. He says he picks up his boat.
Go ahead and click on that boat. That's the boat and trailer I was talking to you about earlier. Where that man is standing right there is the office. There was a door that comes in. And here is Scottís boat.
Go ahead. He says he drives almost 90 miles, like I told you, to the Berkeley Marina. The overview, what the Berkeley Marina looks like. Go to the next. This is the boat launch area. You can see there is three launch docks, that when park your car, there is a little ticket dispenser that you buy, right here. I don't know if you are familiar with how to launch a boat. The way you do it, you just back your boat down, put your truck there on the ram, put the both in the water, the trailer underneath, unload the boat, tie it up to a dock, then go park the car. That's how you do it.
Click out of that. He says he arrives at 12:54. I think, ladies and gentlemen, he arrived around 12:40. Here is how, click on next one, two of two. Here is the actual ticket that Scott gave Detective Brocchini that he said he got from the Berkeley launch ramp. You can see Welcome, Berkeley Marina. The time he arrived 12:54 p.m. December 24. Cost five dollars to launch a boat there. Expired 11:59 Tuesday night. Basically on the same day, December 24th.
Go ahead click that. You are going to hear evidence it was very unusual for someone to have launched a boat at the Berkeley Marina on December 24th. When the police went there later on the 27th, they asked the marina employees, can you run, can you run a receipt that shows how many people bought tickets to launch their boats during this period of time? Can you run it for the 24th? Yeah, we can. It's, actually what we can do, we can run it from the last time we ran it, which was December 23rd, you will see. They first, they last ran on December 23rd. When the detectives went there on the 27th at 8:57, they ran off all tickets to see how many people launched boats and paid the $5 fee to launch a boat. Between the December 23rd and December 27th, only three people launched a boat at the Berkeley Marina, one of which we know was the defendant. You just saw that ticket before. The defendant and two other people were the only ones that launched boats at the Berkeley Marina and paid the launch fees between the dates of December 23rd and all the way to the 27th.
Go ahead. He says, he gives a very specific description about where he takes his boat. He says he pilots his boat from the Berkeley Marina to an island two miles north. This is his exact words. He says two miles north to an island covered in trash, with a broken down pier, and a no-landing sign. There is only one location in the entire San Francisco Bay that meets that description. That's an island called Brooks Island.
Go ahead and click on that. This, you are going to see these pictures a million times in this trial. We're going start right here. Right here is the Berkeley Marina. This was an aerial photograph that is taken in the, some time in 2003. I think it was taken in September just, we get aerial view. You can see it was, the vegetation is all dead. It's end of the summer. But this is just an aerial view, so you will see what it looks like. Here is the Berkeley Marina. It's almost exactly two miles north of this island, Brooks Island. Just for further reference Laciís body washed ashore right here. Conner Peterson's body washed ashore right here. Here is Brooks Island area. We're going to look at it right here after the tip of the island, don't click yet. So here is where we are. Here is this particular location right there at the tip.
Go ahead and click. You can see that there is trash here, there is a no-landing sign. This is the very tip of Brooks Island as we're looking at it there. Next pictures we are going, we are heading this way towards the main part of the island, or as you are looking at it off to the left.
Go ahead. There is more debris all along the island. There is a kind of gravelly beach along Brooks Island, another large no-landing sign right here.
Go ahead and click. And you can see there is a big prominent no-landing sign. Again we were together slightly further down, I didn't put a picture in, slightly further down. As we're, setting here off to the left there is a broken down pier.
So go ahead. Next. Go to the next slide. While this is going on, I need to go back for a second. So the defendant says he's got his boat. He's gone out fishing at the Berkeley Marina. Says he left at 9:30. We talked about that. At 10:18 in the morning, Karen Servas is backing her car out of her driveway. Karen Servas is the next door neighbor to 523 Covena. Karen Servas is right, take a look at the street, up the street. Karen Servas is to the right. She is the house right next door the house to the left of my right. The other side is owned by Kristin and Greg Reed. The same Kristin Reed that I told you drove by. It was owned by Greg Reed's grandmother, who died back in April of 2002. It was vacant at this time. Karen Servas at 10:18 is backing her car out of the driveway.
Go ahead, click on Karen. That's a picture what she looks like so you will be familiar with her. Click out of that. She says as she is backing out, she finds Scottís dog McKenzie, and she is familiar with the dog from living next door, standing in the street right directly in front of her house. So go ahead, click on that picture, actually. Here is Scottís home. Right here is the Reed's grandmother's home who died back in April it's vacant here. Karen Servas' house is there. There is her car. She finds, she is backing out at 10:18 in the morning. She finds Scottís dog standing in the street right there.
Go ahead. Now, Karen Servas initially tells the officer, let me tell you what she does with the dog. She goes out and she stops her car she gets the dog. And the dog has a leash on. She bends down, calls him, or picks up the leash, takes the dog and tries to put it in the front gate, finds it's locked, goes around to the driveway, and you will see where that is in a minute, and goes into the backyard with the dog, holding the dog, kind of pulling him along, and goes all the way in the backyard, walks around, keeps calling for anybody. Is anybody here? Kind of. I found your dog. No answer. She just leaves the dog, and leaves the leash attached. When she gets to that side gate, it's open. She walks into an open gate with the dog. She leaves the dog there with the leash attached and shuts the gate behind her? She originally tells the police this. When the police come, he gets hold of her. She says, well, you know, yeah, they said, did anything, she said I found the dog in the street. She says she originally tells him what time was that. She states she originally found it at 10:30.
She then gets a call from Scott some time, I think it was the next day on the 27th, and he asks her, with respect to her cell phone and says, you know, are you sure about what time you found the dog? Can you be sure? She kind of starts thinking about it. And she thinks about what she did that morning. And she knows that she, after she put the dog in, she went back inside her house and washed her hands, because the leash was wet, and had like kind of grass and dirt and stuff on it. She went back inside and washed her hands and, put the dog away, washed her hands, got back in her car, drove downtown. It's not far, I don't know, maybe a mile or two. And tried to go to the bank. She said she drove around the parking lot, couldn't find a place to park. She was planning on going to a Christmas store which is in a different location downtown. She drove around the bank parking lot.
She then went to a place called Austin's Christmas Store. She bought a couple of items. She went right back. She knew what she wanted, bought a couple items, and came out. She realized that she kept the receipt from Austin's Christmas Store. So she said, I wonder if it has using it, basically until Christmas, of course. Then he receipt, and that's what it remains for the entire time he's the time on it when I purchased that item? And it does. And you are going to hear from the guy who runs Austin's Christmas Store, that the receipt that he use for his Christmas Store, he actually runs a patio store, and then during Christmas time he opens up a Christmas store next door. When that, when he opens up that Christmas Store, he sets the cash register receipt by calling time. Calls up time, gets it, and sets the time in the cash register and based on that, she backtracked from 10:34. She backtracked and she realized I found the dog really more like 10:15 to 10:18, something like that.
JUDGE: Mr. Distaso, we'll take the morning recess. All right, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, we're going to take a recess until quarter to eleven. Remember the admonition. You are not to discuss this case among yourselves or with any other person, or form or express any opinion about this case until the matter is submitted.
JUDGE: All right. This is the case of People vs. Peterson. Let the record show the defendant's present with counsel. And the jury's in the jury box along with the alternates. Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, it looks apparent to the court that the opening statement is going to take longer than the estimated two hours, so looks like we're going to go into the afternoon with the opening statement of the prosecutor. So we'll just go along with the program.
Go ahead, Mr. Distaso.
DISTASO: Thank you, your Honor. Let me just catch you back up to where we were. Karen Servas said that remember she found the dog at 10:18? The south side information says 10:08, and we can proceed on from here. Click the next slide. The defendant says, he tells Detective Brocchini that when he takes his boat he takes it out to an area near Brooks Island, and he says he finds a shallow area and he says he feels it would be a good place to fish. So he starts to troll. And for all the non fishermen on the jury, what that means is you throw your line out behind the boat and put, you can troll with bait or a lure, and it just kind of drags behind the boat and the fish thinks that's something swimming and grabs it. That's what trolling means. He says he fishes, says he trolls.
He says he does that for about an hour, hour and a half. He says it begins to rain, he starts getting wet, and he decides to return to the Berkeley Marina. You're going to hear from the harbormaster that day it didn't rain at the Berkeley Marina on December 24. The defendant says that after fishing for his one hour, one and a half hour time, he then returns to the Berkeley Marina.
Go ahead and click on it. What this chart shows you is this is the defendant's cell phone activity. And kind of like I showed you earlier, you know, tracking his cell phone usage throughout the day on December 24th. Where the defendant was when he was on his phone, connected to a call. You can see that the first call was in Modesto. That was the voice mail at 10:08. We talked about that one. He then received the second call at 11:44 from his father, Lee Peterson, and the cell tower was unknown because incoming calls, like I told you, that just go into voice mail are not tracked by cell sites, just the fact that it came in. The third call was at 2:12. He made an outgoing call to his voice mail. What that means is he checked his voice mail again at 2:12 in the afternoon.
Remember the ticket says he arrived at the Berkeley Marina at 12:54. He bought a ticket, put it up on the dash. You put your boat in the water, tie your boat up to the launch, I mean you put your boat trailer in the water, you take your boat off the trailer, you hook it up to the launch ramp that is waiting for you there, and you go park your car. I don't know how long that takes, but if you buy the ticket at 12:54, it's got to take some amount of time. Probably ten or 15 minutes.
He then is the back on his phone checking his voice mail at 2:12 p.m. The cell tower that he's using is 2600 10th Street in Berkeley. That's the cell tower that services the Berkeley Marina. So we know from his cell phone usage, the records show us, that he was back in the Berkeley Marina by 2:12. He then does another call to, outgoing call to his home phone. He leaves a message for Laci. You're going to hear that call during the trial. He then at 2:17 leaves an outgoing call to Laci Peterson's cell phone, the one that's in her car, it's not powered up, that Detective Brocchini found, and he leaves a message on that particular cell phone's voice mail. You'll hear that, too.
The sixth call is he makes an outgoing call to Greg Reed. Kristin Reed, remember the woman who drove past the house at 9:39, saw his car there, and Kristin and Gregory are the caretakers of that house right next door to him that Gregory's grandmother used to live in. He called Gregory at 2:34 and says to him, they just talk pleasantries, you know, Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas, that kind of thing. You know, it's in the afternoon now, Christmas Eve. And they talked a very short time, and Scott doesn't say anything. It's kind of like what were you doing today: Oh, nothing, that kind of thing. Scott doesn't take any mention of just going fishing or just being fishing or that he purchased a boat or anything like that. He doesn't say anything to Gregory about fishing that day.
He then, the next call, he calls Lee Peterson, his father. You're going to hear from his father in the trial. He makes two calls to him, at 2:40 and 2:45. They have a similar conversation, you know, Merry Christmas, what are your plans, oh, we're going over to Laci's mom, Sharon and Ron's house tonight at six for dinner. That kind of thing. He doesn't make any mention of the fact that he's been fishing or that he had purchased a boat or anything at all to do with the Berkeley Marina. No mention during any of those phones calls to any of those people. He makes, and you can see at that, at that cell tower he's in Oakland at 2:34, which he's actually leaving the Berkeley Marina and driving now back to Modesto.
He's in Castro Valley when he makes the second call. Castro Valley, again he's on his way back, you can see where Castro Valley is. There's the Berkeley Marina right there where it says Berkeley on the map. Here is Modesto.
There's another call to voice mail. Again the cell tower is unknown. Is it comes into voice mail at 3:44. A tenth call, he makes an outgoing call to his home phone, leaves another message on his home phone. And he's now in Livermore at 3:52. And then the eleventh call, the last call he makes between 10:08 and 5:44, this is the entire cell phone usage throughout the day, is back at his home at 5:54 p.m. He's using his, his cell, and he's back at his home at that 1250 Brighton Avenue cell tower.
You're going to see that there's one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten, eleven calls between 10:08 and 5:44. That is a very unusual cell phone usage, you're going to see from his records, for the defendant. The defendant was a very heavy user of her cell phone throughout this time, and there's often, you know, 20 or 30 or more calls that are made. And this between, the fact that there were no calls in the morning until 10:08 you're going to see from his records is very unusual.
Go ahead, next one. He says he comes back from the Berkeley Marina, returns to his shop, puts his boat away. He said that he put those big patio umbrellas, remember the ones I told you about that Detective Brocchini saw in the back of his truck? He says that he had put those in his truck that morning to take to the shop to store them for the winter. When Detective Brocchini saw them there in the back of the pickup truck, he tells Detective Brocchini, he asked him about that during this interview, and you're going to see this entire interview, it's on videotape, so you're going to see it, but he asks him what about those umbrellas, and he says: Oh, well, I just forgot to, to put them in there; I took them with me to Berkeley, came back, came back to the shop, unloaded my boat, saw it, you know, forgot to put them in again, and I dropped the boat off.
He says when he goes home he finds his dog McKenzie. Click on the dog so they can see it. This is the dog we're talking about, the Golden Retriever. Go ahead click out of there. He says he goes home, finds his dog McKenzie in the back yard with his leash attached, just like he told him previously.
Click the next slide. He says, before we go into that, he says he finds the dog like that. He goes inside. Laci's car is in the driveway, he finds the dog in the back, he unhooks the leash, puts it on the patio table. He says he walks in, and in this house you enter through, really, the backyard. Because what the house is, the house is here, it's got a garage that's converted to a living room so there's no real garage anymore, and where the front door would be there's actually a fence and a courtyard. So when a normal house would have a front door, it's really behind a gate. And where's these folks always entered was other side of the house, where Karen Servas put the dog in. All of them enter in through the back door. So he really came in through the back door.
So he goes in through the door and the doors are unlocked. He says during this fishing trip that he had, he had taken no food with him and nothing to drink the entire day. He said other than the fact that he got up, he had a bowl of cereal, he hadn't eaten or drank anything the entire day on his, on his fishing, he didn't stop for food or anything like that. He says when he gets home he's hungry, he opens up some cold pizza from the night before, and he takes a bite of pizza. He says he takes off the clothes, only the clothes that he wore fishing that day. Takes off those clothes, goes to his washer, takes dirty rags and stuff in the washer out, and he puts those aside and washes only the clothes that he wore fishing. And Detective Brocchini asked him about that, you, know, Why did you wash just your clothes. He says Well, my clothes were wet, so I washed them.
He says then he takes a pizza, gets in the shower, takes a shower, and then by this time is when he starts calling Sharon Rocha. We talked about that. We talked about Amy Krigbaum and going to one of the neighbors. We talked about Officer Spurlock so we can click through slide fairly quickly.
During that time Detective Brocchini asked him, he says: You know, I have to ask you this, it's part of what we do, you know, is there anything you want to tell me about any problems in your marriage. Are you having an affair, is your wife having an affair, anything like that, that I need to know about. He says no. He said no, nothing like that at all. In fact, Scott will go on to tell Detective Grogan that and all of Laci's family and a number of people that there's no issues at all regarding having an affair and his marriage. Detective Brocchini, like I told you, took pictures of Scottís boat and shop when he was out there, and I'm going to show you those now.
Go ahead and click on those. There's one he took a picture of the license of trailer. And this is a picture looking from, basically standing by that trailer that we saw in an earlier photograph, looking at the boat. And you can see Detective Brocchini's notebook there on the bow of the boat where he took it. And in the back there it's black, and that illumination is coming from Detective Brocchini's headlights. Next slide. This is back of the boat. This is actually just the gas tank and the battery.
Go ahead, next picture. He took this picture of the fishing equipment and a number of other items that are on the boat. This is on December 24th when he was in the shop. You can see the, this is the fishing equipment that Scott said that he went, that he took with him to the, to the Berkeley Marina for fishing. There was like an ultra-light real thin freshwater fishing pole. There's another freshwater fishing pole that you're going to find out that he just bought on December 20th.
You're going to hear from some professional fisherman that fish in the Bay for their livelihood, this is their job, they fish in the Bay, they write books and articles and do a number of other things about fishing for different types of fish in the Bay, particularly for sturgeon and striper. What they're going to tell you is that as a professional fisherman perhaps they could catch a sturgeon or striper with this particular pole, but a neophyte fisherman probably could not. They're also going to tell you, and they've looked at all this fishing equipment, that the fishing equipment that Scott took him, took with him to the San Francisco Bay that day, with what he had there, there was zero chance that he could have caught a fish. No chance at all, based on the stuff he had with him. They're going to tell you that because what's called the terminal tackle, the things you put on the end of your line, if you're not a fisherman these terms don't mean a whole lot, but, of course, to catch a fish you have to have a line, and the things you put on the end, the type of hook you use, the type of bait you use, the type of weight you use, Scott didn't have any of that stuff with him needed to catch a fish. He did have some lures, some bass lures and some things, and what they'll tell you is if you were trolling those lures, perhaps you could snag a fish or something as you were going by, but you couldn't actually catch one because that's not the type of gear that you use to catch fish in the Berkeley Marina, particularly at this time of year.
They also, detective Brocchini also took this picture, and right here you can see a pair of pliers. This is exactly where they were on December 24th, and we're going to talk about that later.
Next picture. There is a, you can see he had a paddle and some other things, and, and there's one anchor. I'm going to talk about that anchor later.
Go ahead, next picture. This is the front of the boat, the bow of the boat. There's a canvas bag you can see and a gas tank and some other things.
Go ahead, you can click out of there. He also directed that a CSO, a Community Service Officer, take some pictures of Scottís home on the 24th. I'm just going to go through them quickly so you can see what the house looked like that day. This picture was actually taken by the FBI on December 26th. The reason I put it in here for December 24th is because the cars are in the same location they were on December 24th, and Detective Brocchini is going to tell you that this is how the cars were when he saw them.
Next picture. This is the front of the house. Again, this picture is from the 26th, but this is, again, how the front of the house looked with the window shades down on the 24th. Next picture, actually go back. That picture right here, this is actually the converted garage. This is the gate that you would go to in the courtyard. The front door would be right behind here. The, Karen Servas actually walked up this path, checked this gate to try to put the dog away, which was locked. She went around the corner. There was a gate here in front of the cars, and she actually went through that gate, which was open when she put the dog away.
Go ahead, next picture. These pictures now are starting the ones actually taken on the 24th. When Detective Brocchini walked up to the back door where Scott said he went in the house that day, he found that mop bucket with the two mops out in front of the house. He asked Scott about that. He said what's the deal with the mops, you know, out in front of the, the thing here. Scott told him that when he had left that morning, Laci was eight months pregnant, he said she was having a hard time lifting things, she wouldn't lift anything, he said, and he said that she was getting ready to mop the floors. You're going to hear actually that Margarita Nava, the housekeeper, had been in the house the day before, on the 23rd, and actually cleaned and mopped the entire house. But according to Scott, she was, she was going to get ready to mop the floors that day. He said that he filled up the mop bucket and put it in another portion of the house. He said when he came home the mop bucket was still in that other portion of the house but that the dog or the cat had run in and ran over to the mop bucket as if it was going to drink or knock it over, or something, so he said that he moved it out in the house to that location there where you see it, dumped it out and set it up against the door. Both mops.
Go ahead, next picture. This is a picture on the 24th from, from the, what the baby's nursery looked like.
Go ahead, next picture. And this is the other side of the nursery.
Go ahead, next picture. I'm sorry. This is the master bedroom of the house as it looked on the 24th. Scott, as I told you before, he said that Laci was wearing a number of jewelry items when, when he left that morning. On the 25th he gave a different story. Slightly different to Detective Grogan. He said that Laciís diamond ring, the one that he said he was wearing on the 24th, which you're going to hear was actually in the shop being repaired, he said no, she wasn't wearing that diamond ring, she was actually wearing a different ring, a blue sapphire ring. And all the jewelry items, except for the diamond earrings that Scott described throughout the stories he gave to the different officers, were all found here in Laciís jewelry cabinet, I mean jewelry information there on the, on the nightstand.
Go ahead, next picture. This is a picture of their bed. Just showing the master bedroom. This is Laci's closet there in the master bedroom.
Go ahead, next picture. This is where the officers found Laciís purse. You can see that's the purse. All her personal items were all inside there, and you can see that she had a cream colored scarf that was in front of that, and I'll talk about that in a bit.
Next picture. This is the dining room area.
Next picture. This is the kitchen looking into that converted garage. These are those blinds that we saw. That's in front of the house, actually, on the other side there.
Next picture. This is the other side of the converted garage. This is the, this is the far side of the converted garage. And here is a picture of the washing machine area. This is where Detective Brocchini saw only the defendant's clothes that he said he wore fishing that day in the washer. These rags were actually in the, in the washing machine. You can see they're dirty. They were used by the housekeeper the day before, and she put them in the washing machine to be washed. And the defendant said he took the rags out of there, put them aside to wash his clothes.
Okay, you can click on the next slide. We talked about the market umbrellas.
And, in fact, you can just go to the next slide. He said, like I told you, he said he saw a tan boat cover on the bed of the truck, and I want to show you a picture of that. Here's the boat cover on Scottís boat. You can see that it covers the boat completely, and it can be strapped down so you can actually drive the boat with the cover on. And you'll hear people talk about that.
Next slide. I told you about the handgun that Detective Brocchini seized from Scottís glove box. Let me show you a picture of that. And you're going to hear some evidence from the Department of Justice about when, if they felt this, a gun was fired and if they felt it was cycled. And I'm telling you about it now so that you can pay attention to that as it relates to what Scott told Detective Brocchini about his using that particular handgun during the hunting trip.
Go ahead and click out of there. We showed you her purse and personal effects. I put this at the bottom of the slide.
There are no phone calls to Scottís girlfriend, Amber Frey, on December 24th. I'm going to talk about Amber Frey at length in a bit, but that kind of finishes the end of the 24th, something you need to pay attention to. All right.
Let me talk briefly now about December 25th. The next day, at the end of this fairly long interview with Scott, Detective Brocchini asked him where, you know, where do you want me to take you. Take me home. He does. He takes him home. When they get home there's no one there. The streets are empty. This case has not yet hit the media so there's no media trucks around or anything else. Early in the morning on Christmas day. No one's home at Scottís residence. He drops him off.
The next day Detective Grogan is called in because he's the next detective to be assigned in the homicide rotation, and they decide that this, that based on everything they have learned, they need a full time detective to work the case. They don't just need someone on call to take a statement, they need someone to work this case, so they call in Detective Grogan and he's assigned the case. On that day also Scott calls, let me stop.
While that's going on, I've already told you the park's being searched, the county's being searched, you know, they're canvassing the neighborhood, doing a bunch of things. Scott calls Detective Brocchini and asks him: Are you using cadaver dogs, dogs which search for people who are, dead people; Are you using cadaver dogs to search the park. And Detective Brocchini says Well, you know, that, he says that's surprising because, you know, we haven't come to the conclusion yet that Laci is dead, so, no, we haven't really, we haven't started doing that yet.
That, that kind of sets the stage for this entire case. What we just saw. This story about fishing, the entire, it kind of sets the scene for us. What I want to do now, we're to December 25th.
What I want to do now, though, is go way back and kind of start in the beginning, start in September, and I want to, to go through there and tell you about the things that the detectives learned as they went through and investigated this case. So we go back to September 24th. That's kind of the first date that really has any relevance. Laci has her last sonogram. The way sonograms work, if any of you have children, I think some of you do, there's an initial sonogram done and one done I think three or four months later, and unless there is a problem pregnancy or there's issues they need to check the baby with, those are really the only two sonograms that are usually completed. And that's what was done in this particular case. And based on that sonogramís measurements, what the doctors are going to tell you, and the doctors, Laciís OB-GYNs are Dr. Yip and Dr. Tow-Der. What they're going to come in here and tell you is that based on those sonogram measurements, Laci, or Conner Peterson, the baby in this case, would have been approximately 33 weeks old on December 24th.
Go ahead and click on that record real quick. Let me show you this record. It's going to be hard for you to read, but what it says is on, on September 24th the baby was 19 and two sevenths weeks with a due date of 2/16. The baby's heart rate was 154. And basically what they said was the baby was fine and growing normally at that time. If you count out the weeks, and I've done that, it would actually put you on December 24th at 32, 32 and two-sevenths weeks. That's what you would get. This technology that the doctors used has a variance of about two weeks, and, and the best way, the doctors are going to come and describe it to you, is when they give a woman a due date, they say your due date, in this case let's say February 16th, what they mean is you can have the baby really pretty much anytime from February 1st to February 28th. You know, you can have it anytime in this range, kind of two weeks on either end. So the technology that they use, while accurate, it's got this two week, you know, variance on either side. So if we want to be completely accurate when I tell you what, on the 24th the baby could have been as old as 34 and two-sevenths weeks, or I suppose as young as 30 and two-sevenths weeks. That's really what you have to look at.
Go ahead and click out. Click out. Now, let's go to October. The reason that's, and I want you to think of that. The reason that's important is there was another doctor who came in later after Laci and Conner Peterson were found and did some more detailed analysis. He has more sophisticated ultrasound machines, and he did more detailed analysis of Conner Peterson's femur bone. And based on the growth measurements of Conner Peterson's femur bone, he was able to determine, within a plus or minus of five days, three to five days on either side, how old Conner Peterson would have been on December 24th. But what the initial doctors will tell you is what I just said. Okay.
If we go to October 23rd, this kind of starts Scottís relationship, or how it started with a woman by the name of Amber Frey. He, Scott went to an agricultural trade show. And, like I told you, he was a fertilizer salesman at the time and he traveled frequently in his job and he goes to these trade shows in order to help his business. At the time he went to a trade show on the 23rd, he met a woman by the name of Shawn Sibley.
Go ahead, click on it. That's what she looks like. And you'll hear from her. What he told her during this time, they had a lot of drinks, they spent a lot of time together over these two days. They did not have a relationship. But what he told her was at the time he was looking for a serious relationship. He said he was tired of kind of, you know, these women who weren't serious, he was tired of this kind of problem, and he wanted a woman who was smart and who had, was willing to have a more serious relationship. And she said, You know, if you're serious about this, I have someone in mind for you, but I want to tell you that if you're not serious, if you're just kind of playing me, you know, I don't want you to call this person or have anything to do with this person because she has been hurt a couple times before. And he tells her No, you know, I'm serious about this.
And these conversations that they're having about Shawn Sibley kind of setting him up are taking place over actually a couple weeks. And basically from the time that they, the very first time that they met was on October 23rd. And as the weeks went by they had some business contacts because they're both in the same business. And they would also talk about personal things, such as Shawn Sibley kind of trying to set him up.
And go ahead, click out of there. Okay. Also in October, so that's kind of, what's going on on one side, kind of one side of the fence, right? On the other side is toward the end, end of October, go ahead, click on the 27th, sometime in the latter part of October, Laci told her mom, Sharon Rocha, that she had gotten sick and dizzy in the park. And I told you about that earlier. That's why Sharon was so upset and wanting to go down to the park on the 24th. She said, You know, I've gotten sick, almost passed out, having a lot of problems when I was walking, and Sharon was concerned about that.
Let me show you a picture of the park. This is this Dry Creek Park area I told you about. This picture was taken I think in the summer of, like, 2001. These aerials are not, they're only to show you what the area looks like, so you can see all the vegetation is not green. And here's the creek I told you about. Here's the bike path. The park, actually, this street corner right here, I think that's Scenic and Coffee. That won't mean anything to you, but it will come into perspective later. And then the whole park is five miles long. It goes all the way down here, it goes all the way downtown.
And Scottís home is right here. His home actually has a pool now, so there would be a pool in the back yard here, but when this picture was taken in 2001 they hadn't put a pool in yet. Here is the Reeds' home. That Reed home I told you about, and then here is Scottís home, and then Karen Servas' home is right here. The end of the street, this is Covena Avenue. This is the street that Kristin Reed was driving down when she looked down the street and saw Scottís truck at 9:39. That steep little footpath that I told you about that you get down to the park from their house is right there. You walk down to end of the street, there's a steep, a dirt footpath that goes down to this field. And you can see on the photograph where people have walked from the footpath and kind of traced, you know, kind of tramped down the dirt there to get to the bike path, which is in the middle.
Okay. Click out. Go to November. On November, actually, before I talk about that, Scott and Amber Frey have their first, their first date on November 19th, but before we talk about that let me go to November 6th and November 8th. Laci had called her mother; remember we just talked about, at the end of October. And she also then on the 6th and the 8th called her doctor about these problems she was having while walking. I'm going to show you her medical records now. Click the next one. On 11/6 it says: Patient calls, and I can't pronounce this word, it's a medical term but what it means is had a dizziness episode last week while walking times 20 minutes. Just, and then again this week, today. So as they're talking about that episode she had in October, and then she had another episode today. Patient notes, walks in the a.m. before breakfast. Recommended patient not exercise, is what the doctor told her, and if she does, to do it later in the day. On the 8th Laci had a similar incident. Patient phone calls, complains of the same issue, dizziness, getting sick while walking. Denied passing out, that's what that means. Self-care measures, again, were given to her.
Okay. Click out. Now, during this time from October to here in November, this was a time that Shawn Sibley and Scott were talking about setting him up and doing some business. On the 19th, or, actually, let me go to this call button first. Go to the calls buttons first. These calls buttons I'm going to show you throughout the rest of my presentation are just that cell phone calls, as best we can determine, are the phone calls between Scott and Amber Frey. Scottís calls are always going to be in red. Amber Frey's, who initiated the call will be in blue. In this particular case you can see Scott, or the defendant called Amber Frey three times on the 19th to set up their date. They had a date, their date first started on the 20th. They spent the night together, and he went home on the 21st.
They then, looks like Amber then called him twice on the 22nd. They each called each other on the 24th. There's no calls during this end of the week in November, and I'll talk about that in a minute.
Click out and go to the 19th. Here's a picture of Amber Frey. You've probably seen her before from the media.
Click out again and go to the 20th. And Scott and Amber Frey had their first date in Fresno.
Go ahead and click on it. At this particular Radisson Hotel in Fresno, and they spend the night together.
Go ahead. During this last week in November, here's Thanksgiving on the 28th.
Go ahead, click on the 26th. Scottís family holds a baby shower for Laci down in Southern California. They live in San Diego. While they are there, Scott and Laci both are there for the entire week. While they are there, Scott, or Scott and Laci go to Disneyland California Adventure. While they're there Laci gets tired, she, she's tired, she doesn't want to walk anymore, and the defendant actually gets a wheelchair for her and pushes her around California Adventure towards the end of the day, because she's not doing so well walking.
Go ahead, click on that picture of the baby shower, though. You can see here's Laci. This is two of Scottís sisters. You can see there's the diamond necklace that Scott said she was wearing. You can see in other photographs that she frequently wore. Again, I'll tell you about the necklace in a minute.
Go ahead and click out. No, back. I mean click all the way out. Go to December. In December the defendant again started up his relationship with Amber Frey.
You can see, go to the 2nd. On that date he spent the day with Amber and her daughter down in Fresno. He was also approved for membership in the Del Rio Country Club. That's important because you're going to hear that all of the defendant's family, I mean all of Laciís family and most of Laci's friends, in fact, most of Scottís friends, knew him as a very avid golfer. And none of these people are going to say they knew him as an avid fisherman. In fact, Ron Grantski, Sharon's partner and Laci's stepfather you're going to hear is a very avid fisherman. In fact, he's kind of a crazy fisherman; it's kind of his main hobby and what he does. And you're going to hear he asked the defendant to go fishing on numerous occasions: Hey, you know, you want to go fishing today? No; you know, Do you want to go? No. You know, they have this kind of thing going. He only took him up on it a couple times. The last time he had taken him up on it was a year and a half prior. And, but they all knew of him as a very avid golfer. In fact, when he was approved for membership in the country club, they all knew about that. That was a big topic of conversation in the family. Fishing was not.
Go ahead, next slide. On, on, Scott spent the, the kind of week here, Monday through Wednesday, with Amber and her daughter down in Fresno, kind of coming and going as he did business and then come back and spend the night with Amber. And then, and things were kind of progressing, going along that way. The relationship was progressing; everything was going fine, until something happened on December 6th.
And what happened on December 6th was, you can go ahead and click on it, was Shawn Sibley got a call by the name of, from a man named Mike Almasari, and by, just by coincidence, she happens to be friends with this person Mike Almasari, and just by coincidence he had interviewed earlier in the year for a job with Scott and Scottís fertilizer company, Trade Corps. Scott was the U.S. representative of this company, which is actually a foreign company. And Mike Almasari interviewed there with him, and during the interview he talked to him and he learned from the defendant that he was marred and his wife had bought a home in Modesto and that's why they lived there, is because his wife's family lived there.
And just by coincidence and because of the business contact, Shawn Sibley was also a friend of this particular person. She was talking to him and she said Oh, you know, it's great, Amber has met this guy, Scott, and things are working out fine and yeah, he's from Trade Corp, he runs this company here in America called Trade Corp, and she just wanted, and he says, You know, Trade Corp, I interviewed at a company named Trade Corp and the Scott that I interviewed with is, is married, and he told me his wife had bought a home in Modesto, you know, and this kind of thing. So then Shawn Sibley gets concerned. She said, you know, I didn't know I set up, you know, my good friend with a married man. And so she starts calling around and checking it out and she finally get a hold of Scott, and she tells him, you know, What's going on, what's the deal here? And Scott tells her, he becomes very emotional. He actually starts crying on the phone. He's, he's very upset, or she thinks he is, and he tells her this story: He says, you know, he says I lost my wife. It's very hard for me to deal with; I can't, you know, I have a hard time telling people this thing, but I lost my wife, and I tell, I still tell some people that I'm married. And he's crying and, you know, she thinks he's crying; it's on the phone, she can hear it. And he says, you know, it's very hard for me; some people I tell I'm not, some time tell I am. But he says: I've lost my wife and this is a very difficult time for me and this is going to be my first holiday season without her.
And she says, you, know, Whoa, this is kind of big news and this isn't what, what I was led to believe. And she says I'm going to call Amber and tell her. And he says No, don't do that, don't call her; please let me tell her in person. And she agrees, Okay, I'll do that, I'll let you handle that.
Click out of there. On the 8th, and Scott doesn't tell, doesn't call Amber, doesn't tell her right away. That kind of, that kind of gets set aside for a second. On the 8th Scott, you're going to hear from some computer experts that looked at his computer. On the 8th he researches a number of things about the San Francisco Bay, one of which is wind and tide conditions.
Go ahead and click on that chart. Here's the San Francisco Bay. This is a chart, you can see he pulled it up at 10:00 o'clock on December 8th. It's, you can see here's the, going into the Bay. The Golden Gate would be right here. Here's the deep-water channel. You can see the dark part of the blue. This is the deep-water channel. This is the current flows you can see. Here is a shallower area. Orient you there. There's Brooks Island. There's the Berkeley Marina. Conner Peterson is found there. Laci is found right there. He looks at this chart on December 8th.
He also looks up other areas on this particular day, like of, I think he looks up boat launch ramps, some in Watsonville, some in some other areas, and places where you can launch a boat out in the Bay. He, you're going to hear he doesn't look up any fishing information on his computer in the whole time the investigators can find, except on December 8th. That's the only time that he looks up boating or fishing information.
Go ahead, click out of there. He also on December 8th contacts a man by the name of Bruce Peterson and asks him about purchasing his boat. He initially looks up, according to his computer, classified ads in the Fresno Bee, down in Fresno, in order to purchase a boat. For whatever reason he doesn't purchase one there. He then looks up other information regarding, and he finds a boat in Modesto and he buys, I mean he contacts a guy by the name of Bruce Peterson, no relation to him, about purchasing his 14 foot aluminum boat, the one that you saw.
Okay, go ahead, click out. Go to the next. On December 9th the defendant does a couple things. He goes and buys the boat for Bruce Peterson for $1400 in cash.
Go ahead, click on the boat. Here's the boat, and it wasn't any, this is later, after they seize the boat, but that's what he bought. He bought a 14 foot Game Fisher boat, aluminum, with a 15 horsepower motor. That's how it travels on the trailer. And he bought that particular trailer. There was no anchor. Bruce Peterson kept the anchor for his boat because he was going to buy a new one later. That's why he was selling this particular boat. Go to the next one. And this just shows you the boat with the cover on it. On that day, after buying the boat, he takes the boat and stores it in his workshop.
After buying the boat he drives down to Fresno and he gives the same tearful kind of hysterical story about losing his wife that he told Shawn Sibley. Amber Frey is going to come and talk to you about that. She's going to tell you that he was so upset, you know, tears were streaming down his face; he was so upset that she could actually hear his stomach rumbling, about this story he tells her about losing his wife. And he tells her again that this is going to be the first holiday without his wife and, you know, he's sorry for lying to her about previously being married, but that's, but that's all in the past.
You're also going to hear that not a single soul knew the defendant bought a boat. No one in Laci's family ever heard anything about a boat. No one in the defendant's family ever heard anything about him buying a boat.
Okay, go ahead and click out. I'm sorry, go to the next one. Also on that date he told Amber this particular story. He said, you know, I want you to know what's coming up here for the holidays and what my schedule's going to be, you know, for kind of the next month. He tells her, he says I'm going to be, I'm going to leave on around the 23rd of, of December to go meet my family in Maine and go duck hunting. You're going to hear his family doesn't go duck hunting in Maine, doesn't have any holdings in Maine, but that's where he tells her he's going to be on the 23rd. He says between, you know, roughly now and December 9th and the 23rd I'm going to be doing a lot of traveling; I'm going to be in Arizona and Sacramento and some other places for my business, but I'm going to be able and stop in and see you periodically, but I'm going to be kind of unavailable. And he says from the 23rd on I'm going to be gone out of state. He tells her on the 28th I'm going to leave for business in Europe. And he says I'm going to leave for business in Europe on December 28th, and I'm going to be there until towards the end of January, and then after that time we'll be able to resume our relationship together.
Go ahead. On the 11th he meets back up, go ahead, click on that, he meets back up with Amber, and they attend a birthday party for Shawn Sibley and her fiancť at the time, her husband, the man Tom, the man right here. And there's Amber Frey and the defendant.
Go ahead, click out. On that date they also make plans for the defendant to attend Amber's formal Christmas party on December 14th. This is on, like, a Wednesday. The 14th I think is a Friday.
Go ahead, click out. This, this is on a Wednesday. The 14th is on a Saturday. The defendant on the 11th rents a tuxedo and makes plans to attend her formal party on the 14th. He already has plans with Laci to attend a Christmas party with her on the 14th.
Go ahead and click to the 14th. On that date she goes alone, go ahead, click on that picture. This is what she's wearing. You're going to hear that she bought that particular outfit, as well as another maternity shirt and, or couple of maternity shirts and a couple pairs of pants, including a pair of khaki maternity pants. In fact, the very ones that she's wearing when her body is recovered in April. She bought all these clothing items kind of together in August in preparation because she had just gotten pregnant. And you'll see the records for that. This is Laci on the 14th at Terri Western's house for, at her Christmas party.
Go ahead click out of there. I'm sorry, you know, click back for a second. There's a couple other things in this picture you can see. Remember I told you on the 25th Scott tells Detective Grogan that Laci was not wearing her diamond ring, she was actually wearing a blue sapphire ring. You can see she's wearing it here on the 14th. Also this diamond watch you can see that she's wearing, this is another item the defendant said she was wearing when he last saw her, and this item is also recovered later from her house. You can see she wore it on the 14th.
Go ahead, click out of there. You don't need to click Boyers and Western. She goes to the party with her friend Stacey Boyers and her mother, Terri Western. Terri is a realtor, and we're going to talk about that later in January. But at the time she spent, Terri and Stacey are both going to tell you she spent most of her time sitting in that chair where she was. Because now she has some problems walking. Her feet are hurting, she's late in the game in her pregnancy, and she's having the normal effects that a woman has when she pregnant. She's having a hard time getting around. And so she spent most of that evening, I think she was only there an hour or two and she spent most of the time sitting in the chair where you saw her where that picture was taken. At the same time, while that's going on, Scott was attending Amber Frey's Christmas party down in Fresno.
Go ahead and click on it. Here is a picture of Scott taken by one Amber or one of her friends at that party.
Go ahead, next picture. Here's the same thing, sitting in the chair.
Go ahead. Here's Scott, here's the defendant and Amber Frey as they were leaving for the party.
Next picture. Here's a picture of the defendant and Amber Frey. This is at a party that was kind of an after-party to the thing.
Go ahead. There's Scott getting ready. Kind of on his cell phone while he was down there.
Another picture of the defendant.
And here's a picture of, I think this picture was actually taken right before the one we just saw of Amber Frey and Scott while they were down at that Christmas party.
Here's a picture that they were taking as they were getting ready. There's the defendant and Amber Frey. Again, I think they were, this was as they were waiting to leave. Then in front of the tree.
This picture is actually an interesting picture because when Amber Frey comes forward to the police department, she does that on December 30th. She hears from a friend of hers who is in Fresno who says Hey, you know, you've been dating this guy Scott, right? She says Yeah. She says, you know, have you been watching the news because, you know, there's something going on there. When that happens, Amber Frey then goes to the Modesto police and kind of tells about what's been happening.
When they do that, the Modesto police receive this particular picture in a fax. So it's not the actual photograph, but it's a fax. And at that time, so they have this picture. It's a fax so, you know, it's not as clear as a photograph, but it looks, you know, you can see what's going on there. On January 3rd Detective Grogan actually asks Scott about this. He lays the fax down in front of him, and you'll see the video of this happening, and he asks him, he says Hey, what's, what's the deal with this; you know, you told us, you know, you were telling us that there's been no other woman or anything like that. And Scottís words were, he looked down at the picture and says Is that supposed to be me? And Detective Grogan doesn't push him on it. He knows it's him because he talked to Amber Frey, and he let's it go.
Go ahead to the next picture. Here's them again getting ready. Them in the car again. And the last picture of Scott and his cell phone. You can click out of there.
After the party that night Amber is going to tell you Scott spent the night at her home, and he asked her, I mean, they talked about a lot of things. And she said, You know, I'm a single mom, I'm looking for a serious kind of relationship, you know, I don't know if that's what you have in mind, that's where I want this to go. And he tells her, you know, they talk about kind of their relationship and the defendant kind of passes on. And she says, You know, I would like to have some more kids, though. They're kind of just talking about their relationship and where things are at. And he says I don't want any children. And he says your child is enough for me. Because she has a daughter named Ayiana, a small child. That will be enough for me. And even tells her, he says, you know, I'm even thinking about getting a vasectomy. And she says, you know, a vasectomy? You're only 30 years old, you're kind of young for that. And he says No, I don't want any children, and your child will be enough for me and that will be okay. So she lets it go with that.
Go ahead. Go to the 15th. The defendant returns from his party down there in Fresno on the 15th. On the 15th Laci and Scott have dinner at Ron and Sharon's house. And during that time they talk about, a large part of the conversation they talk about fishing. And like I told you, Ron is a very avid fisherman. Sharon Rocha is not. And Ron had finally talked Sharon into going fishing that morning, so this is kind of a big deal around the dinner table about the conversation, Can you believe I finally got Sharon to go out fishing with me. And they talk about fishing. They talk about that. Neither Laci nor the defendant ever mention the defendant just purchasing a boat the week before. This is something that Ron would have been very interested in because he does this type of fishing, lake fishing and fresh water fishing that that boat is designed for. Neither one mentioned that, I mean neither one mentioned the boat, and neither one mentioned anything at all about this affair that's going on. Laci doesn't say anything about it. Laci doesn't seem upset. Laci doesn't seem like she even knows about it. Scott doesn't mention anything at all about this woman, Amber Frey.
Go ahead, click the next slide. The next day they leave for a trip, Scott and Laci leave for a trip to Carmel with Scottís family. It's a trip that they frequently, I guess they took over a couple of years, kind of around Christmastime. Click on those pictures. Here is Laci and the defendant on the beach in Carmel. Pay attention to what she's wearing. She's wearing these brown, I mean these khaki maternity pants which are the same kind of pants that she bought on August 30th from Motherhood Maternity and the same kind of pants she's found in when her body is recovered on April 14th. Also pay attention to this particular black jacket. This jacket you're going to hear is one she frequently wore in the wintertime. You can see she's obviously pregnant, and it's the same, it will be the same description that Amy Rocha will tell you she was wearing on December 23rd when Laci and the defendant came to her salon. We'll talk about that in a minute. Pay also attention to this particular kind of cashmere colored scarf. It's the same one that you saw that was hung up on the hook when Laciís purse was found. And it's the same description that Amy Rocha will tell you Laci was wearing when she came to her salon on December 23rd.
Go ahead, click on the slide. Again, this is another day, another picture, from that trip. She's in another pair of those khaki maternity pants. She's got that same scarf on. Laci and the defendant. Click out of there.
Go ahead and click out. Let me, before we leave this, that trip took place, you can see, on December 16th through the 18th.
Now, I want to go to the call button on this particular calendar, and you can see that while they were there, you can see the relationship is progressing by the phone records between Amber Frey and Scott. You can see that he called her on the 2nd. This is the time, the 2nd through the 4th, that they spent together. This is the 11th when they were together. The 14th when they were at the Christmas party. The 9th there were a number of, you see the 9th there were a number of calls. This is the day he bought the boat as well as when he actually went down and told her in person about the story of losing his wife. And you can see that while they were on that trip together, Laci and Scott were down in Carmel with the defendant's family, that he was on the phone numerous times talking to Amber Frey.
Go ahead and click out of there. Go to the 20th. On the 20th Scott, based on that receipt that Detective Brocchini saw on the 24th, Scott bought a two-day fishing license, a fishing rod and two fishing lures. Go quickly through there. Here's a fishing license. It was a two-day sport fishing license. He bought it so late in the year that the store actually sold him one for 2003. You can see it is for two days. The date it was issued was December 23rd. It was actually bought on the 20th, you'll see the receipt for that, but the dates it was valid were December 23rd and 24th.
Go to the next one. This is just the back. You can see the okay stamps on it. Click the next through. He bought this particular fishing pole, and I told you about that. He bought that fishing pole. Here's the second half. Part in the boat. This is again for the 24th. He bought this particular fishing pole on the 24th. The next slide. He bought this striper Bucktail lure, and you can see that it's still in the original package that it was when he bought it. And this is the one that Detective Brocchini found in Scottís truck on the 24th, unopened.
Next one. And he bought this particular lure, too, on, from Big 5 on the 20th, and you can see it's also unopened in the package and hasn't been used.
Next slide. He, he also told Detective Grogan later, sometime later when Detective Grogan was asking him about some things that he had seen, he said he made one cement anchor around this time. He said he made a cement anchor in his shop for the boat. He said he made a cement anchor in his shop for the boat. He said the reason he did that was Bruce Peterson kept the anchor.
Go ahead and click on that. He said he took a 90 pound bag of cement and made this small little anchor. He said that's the only anchor that he made. You can see it's small and round. You're going to hear from the detectives, and even be able to see because you're going to see the boat, that inside the boat when they, on the 24th and from then on, there was no rope or no chain or nothing in the boat that can be used to attach to that anchor to actually use that anchor as a boat anchor. You're also going to hear from the professional fishermen that I told you about later that that anchor, this particular small anchor there, was not sufficient to hold the boat in a anchored condition in the conditions of the San Francisco Bay.
Go ahead and click out. This is also, you don't need to click on Rene, but one of Laci friends spoke to her on the 20th, Rene Tomlinson, the last time that her friend Rene talked to her, and Laci complained about being tired and uncomfortable and just having the normal effects of late term pregnancy. I forgot to tell you that December 15th, the dinner that Laci had with Ron Grantski and Sharon Rocha, was the last time that Sharon Rocha ever saw her daughter. Ever physically saw her. She spoke to her once; she spoke to her by phone after that, and actually last spoke to her on the 23rd. And we'll talk about that in a minute. But that was the last time she ever physically saw Laci.
Go ahead and click on that picture of Laci real quick. You can see in this picture Laci's wearing, this is late in her pregnancy, sometime in December; she's wearing that diamond watch that she used to wear. And also the other ring, because her ring was in the shop, her diamond ring, she's wearing a gold band on her finger there. You're going to see in some pictures in a minute that that gold band was also recovered in the house. All the rings she used to wear on her fingers were recovered in the house.
Go ahead and click out. Go to the 23rd. The 23rd is the last day that anyone other than Scott saw Laci alive. And it's, the morning started like this. At about 8:30 in the morning the housekeeper, and you're going to hear her as a witness very soon, sometime this week because she's going to be the first witness; and she's going to tell you that she was hired by the Petersons to clean their home three or four, actually, now I think about it, I think it was about three months before. I think she came every couple weeks. This was her fourth time to come clean the house.
She got there at 8:30 in the morning. She was there from 8:30 to 2:30. She did a complete cleaning of the house. She mopped the floors, she cleaned everything.
She said that during that time Laci was out, in and out a couple of times. She went and bought some groceries. She went and had some hair treatment done at a salon, but she said most of the time she was tired and she spent most of day while Margarita Nava was there with her feet up on a table, just kind of kicking back and watching TV. Click out.
No, I'm sorry, next slide. At 11:35, you'll see from the receipt, Laci went to Trader Joe's and bought some grocery items. She brought them home and was carrying them in and Margarita Nava, the housekeeper, helped her carry them in.
At 12:00 o'clock we know she went to Sweet Serenity day spa, and while she was there she got a hair treatment by a woman by the name of Michelle Bauer. There was another woman there named Tina Reiswig, and they both will tell you that Laci was tired and just, you know, your typical woman that's eight months pregnant and kind of feeling the effects, and they're both going to describe that to you.
At 2:35 she had her last appointment with her OB-GYN. Her, I mean her pregnancy, other than the fact she was getting tired and this kind of thing, the pregnancy, though, was fine. The baby was doing well. The baby's heartbeat was strong. There was no problems with the baby, and Laci's health was fine.
Go ahead, next one. At 5:45 Laci and Scott visit Amy Rocha's hair salon. This is the last time that anyone other than the defendant saw Laci alive. They went there, you're going to hear that Amy Rocha is a hairstylist. They went there so the defendant could get his haircut. They go in, Laci's tired, she spent most of her time sitting on this couch where I think the hair dryers are in this salon, just sitting on the couch, just kind of hanging out, talking while Amy, her sister, cut the defendant's hair. While they were there she was wearing that black coat that we saw before, that cream colored scarf, and a pair of khaki maternity pants that, that you'll see in a minute. That's what Amy has always said, that's always the description that she's given that she was wearing.
Now, you're also going to hear that this particular shop has video surveillance. That fact was not known to the Modesto Police Department until January 17th. On January 17th when they found that out and they went back to check to find out, or asked the manager if they could retrieve a copy of that tape just so they could get a last picture of Laci there in the shop, they found out that the tape had already been taped over, because at the time the salon reused the tapes every week. And so, once a week went by, from the 24th to the 31st, that tape was reused and those images were lost. You're also going to hear that based on this case the shop has increased the time of using their tapes for a month. At the time it was only a week, so there's no videotape available.
But Amy Rocha remembers what she was wearing, and has always given that description of what Laci was wearing that day. You're going to hear that her body was recovered on April 14th wearing khaki colored pants.
Go ahead. This is a picture of just the pants after they were removed from Laci on April 14th. You'll see these pictures, it's very hard to determine what you're looking at, but the area over here is the zipper portion of the pants. This is the tag so it would be the back. The pants are actually cut open and laid out flat on the table with the zipper here and the back of the pants here. Based on the, clearly, you can see the tag clearly, Motherhood. Based on this tag information, the company was able to give us an exact copy of the pants and what they looked like. They sent us one and you'll see those. I know those khaki maternity pants you need to see them. She was also found with a line of duct tape running up her body, and we're going to talk about that later, but not now. Go to the next slide. This is what the pants looked like.
Go ahead and click out of there. The, Scott at, while he was there he told Amy Rocha that he could pick up a gift basket for her from a place called Vella Farms in Modesto the next day, on the 24th. And the reason they have that is on the 25th they were having brunch at Laci's house. So they had ordered this gift basket from this kind of roadside stand to give to I think their grandfather, and it wasn't ready on the 23rd. It had to be picked up on the 24th no later I think than 3:00 o'clock, and it's, this roadside stand, I'm trying to make it simple but it's a little complicated. This roadside stand is actually out near the Del Rio Country Club where the defendant said he was going to be golfing the next day, and he told Amy Rocha, he said: You know, I can pick that up for you because I'm going to be out there golfing tomorrow, and she said Okay, no problem.
You're going to hear later the next day she received a call from the fruit stand and, I think around 4, 3:45 or 4:00 o'clock saying nobody's come and picked this thing up yet and you need to get out and get it or else we're going to, we're going to close down and no one's going to be here. So she actually had to run out herself and get it.
Go ahead, next one. At 8:30 p.m. Sharon Rocha last spoke to Laci on the phone. It was a very short conversation, only about two minutes long. And what she said was, what actually happened, and Sharon will tell you, is that she was on the phone with somebody else, Laci clicked in, kind of on call-waiting, and all she was doing was just confirming that she was coming over the next day for Christmas Eve dinner. She said You know, Mom, oh, yeah, you know, Scott and I will be coming over and that's all, I just wanted to make sure I touch base with you before tomorrow. And because of the fact she was on call-waiting she, you know, clicked out of that. That was the last time Sharon Rocha ever spoke to her daughter. Sharon will tell you that she sounded tired but she didn't talk about any problems that were going on or anything like that. That was 8:30 p.m.
Sometime around this date, Amy, I mean Amber Frey doesn't remember for sure, but Scott called her from a 916 number. That's a Sacramento area code. And he told her that, it was sometime around the 23rd, it was in the morning, and he told her that he was in the airport in Sacramento and that he was waiting to board a flight to fly to Kennebunkport, Maine, like he told her back on the 9th, that this is when he was going to be leaving. And he called her. She actually hung up, and for some reason she recalled the number and called the Sacramento airport and said Hey, I'm looking for this number, do you know where it's at. And it was at a, I think it came back to a pay phone or something at the Sacramento airport. But that was the last that she heard on the 23rd from him.
Go ahead, click out. On the, we talked about the 24th. On the 26th a couple things are going on. The Modesto police serve search warrants on 523 Covena, the Petersons' home, and 1027 North Emerald, the Petersons' shop, and they find a couple things.
Actually, go ahead, click on the shop real quick. This is a diagram of the shop.
Go ahead and click through there real quick. This is that big bay door that I talked to you about. There's that small office there. Click. This is the small office and this is the door you go through to get to the bay area. The bay portion of the shop, I should say.
Go ahead. Here's the other side of the office with the window that looks out. And this is a picture of them serving the search warrant that you've seen.
Go ahead. This is an open area in front of the boat. This is where Detective Brocchini will tell you that Scott hopped over the front of this little trailer, went back and retrieved the notebook off of his boat.
Go ahead, click over there.
Go ahead. Okay. This is just showing the shop. Just finish these up real quick. (A series of slides were clicked through) Okay. Click out of there.
Go ahead and click out. All right.
Go ahead to, And they found a couple things I want to talk to you about. At the house they found the defendant's, I mean at the shop, of course, the boat we've seen. Also at the house they found the canvas boat cover.
Go ahead and click on it. And this is where the Modesto Police Department first actually hung it up on the back of the fence. The reason they did that is it was soaked in gasoline and had a very heavy gasoline smell. And at the time they were doing some searches, and it was found, actually, in the shed, and I'll show you a picture of that in a minute, but it was so soaked in gasoline it was a very heavy smell, so they actually hung it up on the back of the fence to air it out.
Go ahead, click on that. It was found in this little shed on the side of the defendant's home, underneath this gas blower that was leaking gas all over it. You're going to hear from the experts, you're going to hear some dog tracking evidence and some other experts in this case, but you're going to hear from the experts that gasoline is a solvent, and gasoline will do a couple of things. It will degrade human biological material and it will also degrade human scent and smell. And when they found that shed, like I said it was in this thing, covered in gasoline.
Go ahead and click out. They also found those pliers that I showed you earlier. Click on those. And this is a picture showing the front of the boat. It's a little different shot than what Detective Brocchini originally took. This is on the 26th. You can see those pliers in the same spot underneath the third bench seat that they were before.
Go ahead, next picture. This is almost an identical picture that Detective Brocchini took, but it was taken by a CSO, a Community Service Officer, on December 26th. You can see all the items are still basically in the same place, and again the pliers are there. Next picture. This picture, you can't see it from back where you are too well, but let me explain to you what it is. There's a hair. You can see it along the edge of this placard. You can see they're holding up the pliers that they found. There's a hair coming off there. You can just barely, it actually looks like a crack in the plastic. It's got some kind of plastic or some kind of material on the end, and it's intertwined in the jaws of the pliers.
And what you're going to hear about that hair is that Detective Hendee found these pliers, pulled it out and he noticed that there was a long brown hair that was attached to it, and it was wrapped in the jaws of the pliers. And he took the pliers and he didn't want to lose the hair. He took a paper evidence bag. He put the pliers down in the middle of it. He didn't look to count it, he didn't do anything like that. He opened up the jaws of the pliers and he shook it so the hair fell inside. He looked into it to see that the hair made it into there, and he shut it and sealed it up. That's what he did. He didn't take it out, he didn't examine it, he didn't look at it with a microscope, he didn't do anything like that when he collected it. He stuck it in there and he opened up the pliers and he put it in there.
What you're going to hear from the experts is that that hair matches the microscopic characteristics of Laci. You're also going to hear that it's crushed at some end, and there's actually two hair fragments that are in there. There's two hair fragments that were in that envelope. They both matched Laciís microscopic characteristics. They both looked like they had been crushed by a mechanical force, and they both matched her mitochondrial DNA, and you'll hear experts talk about what that means. But basically what that means, and what the experts are going to tell you is that that hair matches the hair of Laci.
GERAGOS: Objection on that because it was specifically ruled that that could not be said. By Judge Girolami.
JUDGE: Well, I don't know what Judge Girolami said, but he said it now and that's the offer of proof. Overruled. Go ahead. I don't know what Judge Girolami said, Mr. Geragos.
DISTASO: They also, they also found a trailer with some concrete rings on it.
Go ahead. And here's what they found. This is the trailer that, that we've seen the end of it where Scott jumped over it to get that binder, but they found that this trailer, which was, which was exactly in this condition when they went there on the 26th, and they found what they're going to describe to you as these cement ring areas on the, on the edge of the trailer. There's one here, they said, they're going to tell you there's one here. They're going to show you there's like a voided area here. There's one underneath this particular pitcher here, and there's another one you can see down at the far end. And click back now to that cement real quick.
Go back to the 20th. Go to that. Scott said he only made one cement anchor on that particular, on that particular day. He said he used a 90-pound bag of cement to make it.
Go back to the trailer picture. When the officers went and searched the warehouse they found four or five voided ring areas on the trailer, just like you saw them. Now go back to two oh two. And this is what they found. You're going to hear from an expert that the cement in all of these ring areas matches the cement of that particular anchor. They never found any evidence of a 90-pound bag of cement. They didn't find the remainder of it. They didn't find the 90-pound bag. They didn't find anything like that, they just found the cement rings on the trailer.
Go ahead to the next slide. Go past the fishing equipment. Go to the jewelry. I talked to you about the fishing equipment. Here's the jewelry that was found in the Laciís room. You can see there's that diamond watch you've seen from the pictures. There's that sapphire ring. There's the two diamond necklaces she used to wear, as well as from the pictures the, the gold bands that she used to wear.
Go ahead. Click out of there. I'm sorry, go to the maternity blouse. Amy Rocha said that when Laci was last seen on December 23rd she was wearing that black jacket, that cream colored scarf, those khaki pants, and a maternity blouse that she describes as either being a dark colored maternity blouse that either had flowers or polka dots on it. That's how she described it. This, this blouse right here was found in this hamper just the way you see it on December 27th. They served the search warrant on the 26th. It was actually in the evening. They actually searched the house on the 27th. And it was found in this particular fashion. This shirt was also bought with that group of maternity clothes that she bought back on August 30th.
Okay, click out of there. Finally, go ahead, the blue tarp. The blue tarp that Detective Brocchini said he saw on the back of Scottís truck on December 24th was found in this particular shed in the backyard of the defendant's home. There it is. And it was covered, there was fertilizer product in there, and it was covered with fertilizer product. And you're also going to hear from the experts that fertilizer product acts as a solvent or degrading material to human, you know, biological material.
JUDGE: This is a good time to take the noon recess. Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, we're going to take the noon recess now. Remember the admonition I've heretofore given you. You're not to discuss this case among yourselves or with any other person, or form or express any opinion about this case. Normally we'd have you back at 1:30, but because they have to set up all this equipment we're going to have you back at 1:45. Otherwise it normally would be 1:30, but I want to give them a little slack time. So we'll see you back at 1:45. And I don't think we're going to get to Mr. Geragos today at the rate we're going. So, see you then.
In-Camera session to discuss Geragos' objection, based on Judge Girolami's ruling on the mtDNA hair evidence
JUDGE: All right. This is the case of People versus Scott. Let the record show the defendant is present with counsel. The jury is in the jury box along with the alternates. Record should reflect that we had an in-chambers conference on the record with respect to the issue of the ruling that Judge Girolami made in Modesto. After discussing it with counsel, I'm going to sustain Mr. Geragos' objection now. And I'm more well-advised what the ruling was. I'm going to ask the District Attorney to clear it up so this will be more accurate in accordance with Judge Girolami's,
GERAGOS: Thank you.
DISTASO: I'll do that. Can we dim the lights a little bit?
DISTASO: I think I had said when I was talking about the, I believe, I think what I said was, regarding the hair that was found in the boat, I think I said it matched microscopically. You are going to hear in that regard the Mitochondrial DNA, it's much more complicated than match or non-match. I used the word "match" to try to simplify and move things along. That really wasn't the appropriate term. I should have talked to you about in terms of the statistics that experts used. Not going to do that with you right now. Suffice to say, you are going to have experts come and talk about the statistics, what they mean. What they are going to tell you is the hair excludes Scott. It does not exclude Laci. And they are going to talk to you, statistical analysis they do, to whether that falls in the vein of whether it matches or not. That's what they are going to talk about.
But moving on. One last picture I want to show you from the search warrant. That green bag that's in the picture you see now. I think I told you that Detective Brocchini saw that green bag in the truck on the 24th. I'm not sure if the green bag was actually there, but the canvas jacket was, as well as the lures and everything else. So I don't want to, I want to make sure I don't misspeak at all during this opening statement.
Moving on now to the 28th. John, go ahead, move forward. In the 28th, a couple, December 28th, a couple of things go are going on. There is a, this case has been, come kind of out in the press, so they are starting to get a lot of press attention. There is a command center set up down in the park by the Modesto Police Department. They are using coordinated volunteer searches in other parts of the county, as well as the park and canvass more neighborhoods, that kind of thing. There is a reward fund been established in order to find Laci for her safe return, was $125,000. And on the 28th of December, it's raised to $500,000.
There is a large search that goes on in a place called Mapes Ranch in Stanislaus County that has, it's like a cattle raising operation, but it's got like a thousand acres, or something. And they use dogs and horses, and civilian volunteers. That's going on.
While that's going on, the Modesto Police have also gone out and done some follow-up work at the Berkeley Marina. They have gone out, like I showed you that ticket before on the 27th, and asked around people if people had seen Scott there. On the 24th they got that receipt that you saw showing how many people had launched boats during that time. And they also, on December 28th, brought in a tracking dog to see if they could track Laciís scent anywhere there at the Berkeley Marina.
How these tracking dogs work, you can go ahead and click on Trimble. This is the dog they used, a yellow lab. And she's a working dog that's been certified by the California Assistance Rescue Dogs. I think it's CARDA is what they call it. And he goes through a rigorous set of training in order to be trained for couple of different things, one of which is to track humans as they are walking along, human scent. Or some dogs are trained in tracking cadaver scents. Other dogs are trained in avalanche rescues, any kind of rescue, such as these dogs can. They go through a rigorous training process. They have to be certified I think every year. Trimble is a dog who is trained to track human scent. I walk across this room here, I leave human scent.
The experts are going to come talk to you about how that happens. It's actually kind of almost kind of scientific mystery of life how we leave human scent and how dogs can track a human scent. What the experts are going to tell you, though, is what this particular dog can do, she's done some pretty amazing things. She can track, she's been known, I mean in both in live operations where she's gone out to try to track people who have been missing, and also in training exercises, she's tracked trails up to two weeks old. So someone has walked along a trail, two weeks, left a trail, two weeks have gone by.
They brought the dog out, they gave the dog a scent article. What they do is they take an article something that's closely associated with the person's scent who they want to track in this case. They use glasses in this particular case. They used Laciís sunglasses. They use an article that's closely associated with them, that not a lot of other people are going to use. I'm holding my glasses up to you, because not a lot of other people are going to put my prescription glasses on. Also glasses is also good, they are going to tell you, because they hold a lot of human scent. Because all humans have a lot of oil and stuff coming out of their nose. It collects in these little nose pads that you have on your glasses. That's what they used in this particular case. They used Laciís sunglasses.
What they do is, they scent the dog to the scent, and the dog is trained to follow that scent, if it can. If it can't, the dog stops and gives a no-trail, circles around, doesn't pick up a trail, we're done. Comes back to the handler and sits down. The dog is also trained, they are going to talk to you about this, to track people as they leave in vehicles. The dog has successfully tracked people have been placed in the trunk of a vehicle and the car driven away.
These, the experts are also going to come and tell you how human scent is left. They call it skin rafts which I think is just for lack of a better term. But what it is is microscopic particles just fall off of us as we walk. That's how we leave scent. As I'm walking through here leaving my scent, if you brought a scent dog in after, he would be able to track along this edge here. Scent, human scent is collected in moist areas. That's how it works. So if I'm riding my bike down the road, the scent is not necessarily going to be collecting along the asphalt underneath me. It will go where the wind blows. It will slowly degrade as time progresses. If it rains, that can even degrade it. If it is left out, the sunshine will degrade, like any other human biological material. Scent though, like I said, will collect along vegetation. As I'm riding my bike, if I'm in a car, and I have a window, or something, my scent is blowing out, it will collect along the vegetation along the road. You are going to hear from these experts, hear that that particular dog can track a human scent like that.
When somebody dies they don't instantly turn into cadaver scent. That's not what happens. Someone dies, and time passes, slowly the body's decomposition processes will start, and there is certain scent character will change. That's what they are going to tell you. Some of these dogs, and this dog is trained to do this kind of thing too. If I track along a trail out in the mountains, and I die, I have left a human, live human scent. But when I die, and as I slowly start to decompose, I'm starting to leave a cadaver scent. People can leave two different kinds of scent. If I'm out in the woods, and let's say I fall and break my arm, I got a compound fracture, and this starts, my arm starts to get infected, starts to rot, I'll start having a cadaver scent in my arm. I'm leaving a human scent because I'm still alive. That type of differentiation doesn't, you are going to hear from the expert, will not cause these dogs a problem. It's not like instantly if somebody is dead that dog can't track them. That's not how it works.
They took this particular dog, Trimble, out to the Berkeley Marina, go ahead and click that, and they ran the dog around the marina launch ramp area. Next picture. Actually they took two dogs. They took Trimble and another dog Deputy Ron Seitz' dog. I don't know that dog's name. Deputy Anderson is the dog handler who runs Trimble. They ran both dogs in the location of, actually put it back, if you don't mind. The next picture they ran both dogs in the location of the Berkeley Marina around the bathroom area and around this particular launch ramp area. Neither dog picked up Laciís scent. Both dogs circled around, attempted to find Laciís scent. Neither dog was successful. The dogs circled back to their handlers, no scent. At that point Ron Seitz finished, put his dog away in the truck. Deputy Anderson ran her dog on the other side of the Berkeley Marina over here.
Go ahead, next slide. She ran her dog down to the parking lot. You can't see it, it's off, but off of the, in the parking lot area here. You can see this line of vegetation that runs along the middle part of the picture there. The dog instantly hit a scent and circled the one time around, instantly hit on Laciís scent there at the Berkeley Marina. The dog ran down, I mean the dog trailed down through this particular area, through this particular part of the asphalt, and down the launch ramp there on left side of the picture.
Next picture, please. The dog trailed Laciís scent down to here, down to this area right here on the boat launch ramp. Next picture. And basically right where this picture was taken, right where we're standing on this particular launch ramp. The dog sat down and gave the end-of-trail signal. Dog picked up the trail, ran down the, ran through the parking lot, down the boat launch ramp, end of trail. She tried to work the dog further down the launch ramp, and the dog had no hits. She tried to do it in other areas of this particular area. No hits. Only on this particular launch ramp right here.
Next slide. Go to the 29th. I'm sorry. Let's go to the 30th. Go through this quickly. December 30th is when Amber Frey contacted the Modesto Police Department. That's when she heard from her friend that you have been dating this guy, what's going on. On that date, Detective Brocchini, I mean Detective Jon Buehler went down to Fresno and asked, I mean took a statement from her, talked to her, provided her with recording equipment. The recording equipment is, you can buy it at Radio Shack. It's a small little recording device. It plugs into a cellular phone and it records any conversations that you take off that phone, as long has it's plugged in. They gave that to her, asked her to record all further conversations with Scott, and she agreed to do that.
Next slide. On the 31st, a community prayer vigil is held for Laci and Conner in Modesto. Scheduled to start at 4:30 in the afternoon. This was a huge community event. There is probably 200 people there. The entire, Laciís entire family was there. They were up on the stage. The defendant in the beginning of the vigil wasn't anywhere to be found. He does eventually come up later. Scheduled to start at 4:30. It's been heavily publicized. Everybody knows it's going on.
Can you click out? Go to the calls button. You can see during, or while the vigil preparations are being made, the defendant makes a number of phone calls to his girlfriend Amber Frey. At the time he makes these calls, you can see 11:35, calls were after 4:12. Service for his wife is supposed to start at 4:30, you heard, and during that time he's on the phone with Amber Frey. He's telling her that he's in Europe. He tells her, you know, he's supposed to leave for Europe on the 28th. He tells her that he's in Brussels, and he's getting ready to do some business. That's what's going on while this vigil is going on in Modesto.
Next click out of there. And, like I said, Modesto Police Department has Amber record all future calls. Actually that evidence, and click on that. Played the last five minutes of a call. You are going to have, here it is here. You are going to have a lot of calls between these, some of which Amber Frey recorded, some of which were recorded later after the Court authorized of the wiretap of the defendant's phones. But this particular call was recorded on December 31st, actually January 1st at 12:01. Seems like a New Years Eve call. Happy New Years Eve kind of thing. You are going to hear the entire call. We don't have, since I don't have days to open this case for you, I'm going to only play the last five minutes of what is a much, what you are hearing is Amber Frey's side of the conversation as well as Scott. It's been recorded on that little device that you plug into the cellular phone.
Go ahead and play it.
<much of the tape was inaudible>
Scott: . . .
Amber: Iím oh my goodness, Iím all right.
Scott: youíre wonderful
Amber: Iím drinking a business extra shout on top of my three cranberry with a lime twist.
Scott: youíre having breakfast.
Amber: well thatís a good way to look at it, but, <giggle> oh, to what do I get to hear from you again, Scott?
Scott: Iíll call when it . . . About 9 hours difference Iíll take the train late tonight from here to Brussels.
Amber: Uh hum
Amber: And then,
Scott: And then Iíll be in Brussels for at least 4 days.
Amber: Are things going okay there?
Scott: Well work hasnít started yet, Iíll start tomorrow
Scott: So whoís to say whatís to come,
Amber: but, it could be intense days for you?
Scott: Iím sorry I didnít understand.
Amber: I said well, it hasnít started for you so your days could be intense long days with these meetings
Scott: Yea probably, yea probably.
Amber: You were saying
Scott: Well whatever time difference
Amber: So all Iím saying is I donít know when you go to sleep?
Scott: Oh probably midnight or 100
Amber: So that would be
Scott: 3 or 4 oíclock your time, and then uh letís see
Scott: To me itís the most intimate time
Amber: Uh hum, the most intimate time because?
Scott: Just because of the time of day, our, our psyches are you know kinds relaxed and you are focused on relationships as opposed to getting up in the morning and doing things or you know going to pick up the dry cleaning thinks like that
Amber: So I donít I donít have my schedule in front of me I know Friday I have you know scheduling here and there but you know I always say most
Scott: You go back to that party
Scott: And our relationship will grow
Amber: And what? okay our relationship will grow
Scott: And how beautiful you are
End of recording
After the Modesto Police Department starts getting this information from Amber Frey about this relationship, he's continuing some of these phone calls that they are hearing like, go ahead and stop that one. They start to pay a little bit more attention to Scott.
They, in early January they start physically surveilling him. What that means, they put people on him you see on TV, like a tail. They follow him where he goes. They also on a couple of different dates when the defendant rents cars and drives to the Berkeley Marina, they attach a global positioning tracker to his car. I'm going to talk about that in a minute.
Before I do that, I want to go to the calls button and talk about some of the calls and how the relationship between Amber Frey and Scott continued during the month of January. Laci was reported missing, of course, on the 24th. And less than a week later, we just heard the end of the phone call at 12:01. Scott called her again at 10:05 that evening, a number of times on the second, multiple times on the 6th. And you can see throughout the month, 12th, 15th, the 19th, the 30th, barely a day goes by you can see where Scott didn't call Amber Frey during this period after his wife went missing. You hear a lot of these calls, because a lot of them were recorded, on, go back now, John.
Go to the 3rd. What I talked, I showed you that picture. I talked to how Detective Grogan showed that picture on January 3rd to Scott. What he said later that night, he was at a dinner with Sharon Rocha, a number of people, when he told them with that incident said, you know, the police, he said, gee, it's crazy, you know, the police have a picture of me with another woman. Somebody must have morphed my picture on the internet. It looked really good. He doesn't tell them anything at all about this relationship with Amber Frey. This relationship with Amber Frey. He doesn't know she's gone to the police, is recording a lot of these things. In fact, it won't be until January 6th, at the Modesto Police instigation, she actually confronts him and says, you know, I know what's going on. What's the deal here? And we can talk about that in a minute.
Go back to the calendar. On the 5th I told you surveillance of the defendant began in early January. On the 5th, the 6th, and the 9th, the defendant made a series of trips to the Berkeley Marina in automobiles that weren't usually associated with him. He, on January 5th, the defendant spent the morning, he was being followed, driving around town hanging up some want posters, missing posters for his wife. And he was in his, in Laci's green Land Rover. At 1:10 he goes home, he changes his clothes, he gets into, he comes out of his house and he gets into his friend Aaron Fritz's silver Subaru, a car that's not usually associated, you are going to hear, with Scott. Aaron Fritz had left his car at the defendant's home, because he had gone to Lake Tahoe for the weekend. So he drives Laci's Land Rover home, parks it, goes in, changes his clothes, gets in Aaron Fritz's car, and drives straight to the Berkeley Marina.
Go ahead, click on that. He drives straight to the Berkeley Marina. He drives straight into this area here, drives around the boat launch ramps, click out of here. Go back to two of two. Near the ramp. He stays less than five minutes. Doesn't contact anybody there. Looks around, and then hightails it back to Modesto.
Go ahead, click out of there. On the 6th he's again being followed. At 10:21 he drives Laciís car to an Enterprise Rent-a-Car. He rents a red Honda. He gets into the Honda. Again, he drives it straight to the Berkeley Marina.
Go ahead and click to the next slide. He drives the circular overlook, one that you saw in the picture. Actually, go back do Berkeley Marina. I want to talk about this. Click on that. He drives to this particular circular overlook. He stays for less than two minutes. From this overlook you can see down here, we'll see in a minute. But out this way, I mean to the right, and then down towards where I guess the 4:00 o'clock position is Brooks Island. And the area where he went fishing, and where Laci's a Conner's bodies will eventually wash up.
Go ahead, click out of there. Go to the next one too. He drives that circular overlook for less than two minutes. Drives to the boat launch area again. Doesn't speak to a soul. Then he leaves the marina. On the 6th you saw there was a number of phone calls between Scott and Amber Frey. Before she can she confront him late in the evening when she, this might even be like midnight, something on the 7th, he is talking to her, and he's reading her poems. These are the things, he hasn't, she hasn't confronted him. She thinks he's, according to him, he's still in Europe. He reads her a poem by Boris Pasternak. Beneath the willow wound round, he says, with ivy, we take cover from the worst of the storm with a greatcoat on our shoulders and my hands round your waist. And he says, you know, if, this is how he explains it to her. She asks him, what are you talking about? And he says, you know, my hands around your waist, like, you know, like covering for people. And then later they talked about the poem a bit. And he says, well, but this thing about the round coat, says comes after it, says but as it comes after you, and intoxicates me. I was thinking it was more of a sexual thing. Things what he's telling her on January 6th. His wife has been missing for two weeks. Later that evening, the Modesto Police tell her to, in effect, confront him about the facts, that they know, and, or she knows that he's not in Europe, and that is going on. And the way they have her do that is, they have her call him and leave him a voice mail message that says something to the effect that a friend of theirs, Saki, has been trying to reach me. She says she has some important information for me. I don't know what's it's about. Something about you. You are, very cryptic. Can you call me and tell me? He calls her back, and he talks a while, hangs up. Then he calls her back. He says, well, I got some bad news for you. And he tells her, yeah, I'm here in Modesto. I'm not in Europe. I have a wife, she is missing. And he basically confirms all these things that I have just told you about the lost wife comment, and all that. You will hear that tape.
Go ahead, go out of there. On the 8th Scott rents a white Chevy pickup truck. In that particular car Modesto Police arrange to have a GPS tracker placed in the truck what GPS is, global positioning, everyone calls the GPS, a bunch of satellites floating above the air, send down a radio signals which is received by a little receiver. No different than when you turn your radio on, you can hear music. Same thing. It's a radio signal. And that radio signal is picked up and received, and it plots your path anywhere you go on earth. A lot of people have them, for camping, for a lot of reasons. A lot of cars now come with them. And, you know, the OnStar system, you probably heard of it. It's the same thing. They take one of these little trackers, they put it in the car that he rents.
Go ahead. On the 9th he's physically followed again to the Berkeley Marina. And at the same time he's also tracked by a GPS tracker.
Go ahead. Tracking. This is where he goes. He goes initially to, he comes in, he goes initially down to this particular overlook, which if you look down in this direction, which will be the 11:00 o'clock direction on the board, overlooks Brooks Island, the area where he says he went fishing. And the areas below Laci and Conner's bodies come up. Doesn't speak to anybody when he goes straight in. He drives, he looks, and then he moves around to the other side of the marina. Go to the next picture. He goes around to the other side of the marina, and he goes down through the circular overlook. He drives around through the boat ramp launch again, around through where the boat launch area is, then back out. And these particular, what they little dots are, this is how the computer tracks the GPS plots. They are set about, I think at this time they are set about every five seconds. Roughly every five or ten seconds it goes blip, and it records. And it records blip. And what you do is, you take the program that it comes with, and you can plot on it a map or an aerial photograph like we have done here, and show exactly where the people went. This is what you are seeing.
Next slide. Next picture. I'm sorry. Again he went around the other side of the marina, went and parked down at the parking area where that overlook overlooks the area where he was, and left the marina.
Go ahead and click on it.
Go ahead. On the 11th, it was widely reported in the media that the Modesto Police Department are searching for a body. What happened was, on the 10th, they have been searching for the last couple of days, I think the 9th and the 10th, with a sonar at the Berkeley Marina, and they have a hit on what could be a body. They don't know that, because it's just a sonar image on a screen. This case has received at the time a lot of media publicity, and that information got out to the media, so it was kind of this big media storm. So the Modesto Police Department released a press release that said we found an object in the marina that might be a body. We're going to go back and dive for it on Saturday. It's well known. I mean it was well-reported that they are going to go try to get in Saturday the 11th. They do that.
During that time, Scott stays off his cell phone completely, except to call in in the morning, except to call in and check his voicemail. Throughout the morning a couple of times he calls in and checks his voicemail. When he does, that you will ring up those cell towers we talked to you about earlier. In the morning some time around 10:30, if I remember the call correct, I'll go around there, he rings, and he is near the Berkeley Marina. His phone is being activated at the Berkeley Marina switch. There was law enforcement personnel there at the marina that day, as well as probably two hundred media people. Nobody saw Scott, but we know his cell phone was there. He was checking his voicemail. Later in the day he still checking his voicemail, and he's tracked via his cell sites gown to a switch in, down in Gilroy and Hollister. No activity on his cell phone, not making any calls. You are going to see that's very unusual for him.
He receives a phone call from Sharon Rocha on his voicemail, and she is very excited. She says, "Scott, Scott, it's great news. The Modesto Police Department just found an anchor. They didn't find the body in the marina. I knew it wasn't Laci." Sheís still holding out hope that Laci's coming home. She says it's great news. Just an anchor. It's nothing. Hopefully they can get out of the marina, not worry about it any more, and move on to something else. You will hear that call. It's picked up on wiretap. When Scott hears that call, he gives a whistle. I wish I could do it. I can't whistle like that. He gives a low whistle like "whew". He then, he then immediately calls her back, and he is says, "Oh, mom, oh, great news. So that's no body, huh?" And she says, "Yeah." She says, "Yeah, why don't you come over?" He says, "I can't. I'm working down in Bakersfield." His cell site information places him over there in Gilroy and Hollister. He tells her, "I can't come over right now. I'm working down in Bakersfield."
He gets a couple of other calls from his parents, and from someone by the name of, a friend of theirs, Heather Richardson, basically conveying the same information, because it's gone out in the media now the body wasn't found. And he tells them serially, he tells his parents, oh, I can't come by, I am down in Bakersfield working. His cell site again puts him in Gilroy and Hollister. Then this is Heather Richardson, I'm down in Button Willow, I'm not going to be able to meet you. And, again, cell site information puts him down in Hollister and Gilroy.
Go ahead click out of there.
Go ahead. On the 13th Scott starts taking a number of steps to move his life from Modesto to somewhere else. On the 13th he sends a letter to the place where he has his shop there at 1027 North Emerald terminating his lease. Enclosed is check for payment of January rent. Next please. Also please accept our intent to vacate 30 days from this date 1-13. Go ahead click over. And advise of prorated amount for February. Terminates his lease on the 13th.
Go ahead, next slide. 14, on the 14th, he's in the volunteer center before the press came in, before anyone came in that he speaks to Terri Western, who was the woman whose house Laci was back at the Christmas party on the 14th. And he says he knows she's a realtor. And he says, you know, I very much need to sell my house. You know. I don't want Laci coming back to this house. And she doesn't really follow up or cover that at all.
He, then click out of there. He then on the 22nd talks to a friend of his Argain, Brian Argain, who is another realtor. He asks him by phone if he can sell his house, and even if he can sell it furnished. And that call is only about four minutes long. I'm going to play that for you right now. <much of the tape was inaudible>
Scott: Hey Brian, Scott here.
Brian: Are you doing alright?
Scott: Yea, pretty positive day.
Brian: You been spending time with your bosses?
Scott: Yea unfortunately had to spend most of the day. Wanted to call up and see what was going on. Sit down with you and maybe we can get some ideas together on what the hell to do.
Brian: That sounds good when are you getting back to town?
Scott: The media canít know. You just want to call me in the morning, Iíll plan to have lunch with you at the club at 1:00.
. . .
Brian: I believe you can, I donít see why you canít if thatís what you want to do.
Scott: . . . keep it quiet obviously.
Brian: when did you want to look at doing it?
Scott: Iíd like to put it on the market right now . . . no way Laci is coming back to that place
Brian: yea I know what you mean. . . . I donít see why you couldn't sell it, as far as the investigation, theyíve already done that, so I canít see that being an issue.
. . .
Brian: Let me check on it tomorrow morning for you
. . .
Brian: you can yea, is that what you want to do, I know you can, but thatís completely up to you, thatís just between you and whoever decided to buy it. We can talk about it at lunch tomorrow.
Scott: okay bye
I want to go back. I forgot to mention on January 14th when Scott asked Terri Western about selling his home, also at 11:58 there is a recorded conversation between him and Amber Frey during that time. It's now, she confronted him on the 6th, to now continuing to talk, and talk about the relationship and what not. But it's within knowledge that he's got this missing wife out there. And she asks him, Scott, why are you wanting a relationship with me? You are going to hear these calls in person. I'm going to read it to you. No, he says, Amber, I care about you. She says, define care. He says, well, I worry more and desire seeing you happy. I worry about you. Desire to make you happy. I desire to help you if you need it. I desire to be, you know, something positive in your life, like a positive partner. I'd like to share things with you. And I think you are just, you know, splendid, for lack of a better word. It's amazing to learn from you, and to learn together. And that's my definition of caring. Later in the conversation, she says to him, I'm just so confused that you still want to hold on to me. I mean all this is going on around you. He says, I mean I stated that I cared about you. I mean you know where I'm coming from. She said, you care? He says, that's all I can say. What's the matter? Amber tells him you care about her, meaning Laci, but I mean you don't love her? You don't, I mean it's just, I don't understand why you want to hold on to me at this point. And he says don't you have a desire to hold on to the things you care about, the people you care about? Amber, I'm sorry I can't give you any answers. Just let me say again, you know, that obviously I care about you, and I think you know the truth about me inside. It's a gift that you share that you talk to me. And I just hope that you will, you know, see that it's appropriate to do so. And if you ever care to share, please call me.
Now, going back to the calendar on the 26th. The defendant's tracked again with the GPS tracker to the Berkeley Marina. He does the same things that we have seen before. This time he's in Laci's green Land Rover.
Go ahead and click on that. You can just see where he went. Down again to the circular overlook, and then left the marina. You can click out of there. On the 27th the defendant rented another car, a Dodge Dakota pickup from Enterprise Rent-a-Car. Each of these cars, by the way, when he rented the Honda car on the January 6th, he rented it. He went to the Berkeley Marina. He came back, he returned the car that same day. On this particular day, I don't know if he returns in car the same day, but he's tracked with the GPS tracker to a slightly different location.
Go ahead and click on that. You can see, here's the Berkeley Marina. There is a circular overlook that you have seen before. He actually went down the frontage road a little bit more to the Bay Meadows, I think is what it's called, race track, which is right there, to an area along the waterfront that, again, looks out over these areas of Brooks Island, and where Laci was found, and where Conner was found.
Next picture, please. Here is a closeup of where he actually went. You can see the GPS tracker was actually set on a little bit different setting. That's why these yellow dots are further apart. This one was probably 15 seconds. Every 15 seconds they were taking a reading. And you can see where he stops. Click out of there.
Go ahead. On the 28th the, let me tell you about this first before, if I may, this little clip for you. You are going to see an interview, I think three or four that the defendant gave with the national and a local news media. You are going to see that the media had a big impact in this case, was kind of following this case. At times was even intruding on the case, both with the police and with Scott. But you are going to hear many of these calls that Scott had with the media. And now he, himself, frequently used the media for the purposes that he thought that he needed to use them for.
In this regard, you are going to see he gave an interview with Diane Sawyer from Good Morning America. I'm only going to play a small portion here. But you are going to see the whole interview during the trial. You can go ahead and play. (RECORDING PLAYED) You are going to hear, as I have already told you, that the information that he told Diane Sawyer has been broadcast around the world was not true.
On February, I mean January 29th, the defendant sold Laciís Land Rover to Rogers Auto Sales in Modesto. Traded it in for a white pickup truck, I believe.
On the 18th, go to February 18th. Go to the calls button, or further calls, but first go back. You can see that the phone relationship and the conversations between Amber Frey and Scott come fairly regularly all through the month of January. You saw, into February, you can see she called him a couple of times on the 3rd, exchanged calls on the 4th, numerous calls on the 7th from Scott calling Amber. And all the way, all the way through until the 19th. The 19th was the last conversation between Amber Frey and Scott, and that's because the Modesto Police Department told her now is the time to break off the relationship. And you can hear that call. And she actually told the defendant that until this situation is resolved with his wife, he shouldn't call her any more.
Go ahead, click out of there. On the 18th, a second search warrant served at the house and in Scottís rented storage unit. Remember, he's moved out of his shop. He moved a lot of stuff into a rented storage unit. And I'll show you some of those pictures here. This is the rented storage unit. You can click through there. Some of the stuff that he had in there, the shop, this trashcan was found in the rented storage unit. It's full of just junk mail and other miscellaneous papers and stuff. Also had has a small album that contains wedding pictures of Scott and Laci.
Go ahead, click out of there. Some differences between, the police went to the house on 18th. You can see the nursery, that it's basically being used as a storage room. It's got a number of items in there. Some leather chairs, one in the right hand corner next to the, there is two of the other ones that are there.
Go ahead. He's moved the spare, the bed was in the spare bedroom out and, go ahead, click through there, out of the computer room, keep going, and he's put it up against the window, kind of blocking the view into the house. Click out of there.
Go ahead. You can skip out of there. Go to April. At this time before we get to, I'm almost finished. Before we get into Laci and Conner's bodies being found, they are found at the locations I have been kind of pointing out to you throughout the day there in, at the Richmond shore. But before I get into, I want to talk a little bit about the investigation. At this point, the Modesto Police Department has devoted a ton of man hours and other things in order to try to solve what had happened here. We talked about the reward. We talked about a number of other things. They investigated a number of other people. They drew up a list of sex registrants who lived in the neighborhood, and they looked into them. They had, because of the media attention, they had received something, to date, something like 9000 tips. In fact, we, even as we sit here today, we continue to receive letters, and what not, from people who write in who are clearly just crazy, or out there, saying things that they say they know about this case. The vast majority of these tips are either just from people who are making stuff up, you are going to hear, or pyschics saying that they saw Laci underground somewhere, or something of that nature.
But there were a number of people who called in, and especially as the media attention continued, more and more people called in who said they saw Laci. People say, lot of people called in said they saw Laci on the 24th or after. In fact, people worldwide have called in, from other countries have called to the Modesto Police Department to say they have seen Laci. They checked into a number of those calls. One was in Longview, Washington. They pulled that. It's not Laci. One was in Upland, California. Someone said they saw her. They pulled that tape. It wasn't Laci. Basically whenever there was a five-foot pregnant woman, heavy woman with dark hair, we got a call from somebody saying it was Laci. And the Modesto Police Department looks into any of those tips.
Are you going to hear during the course of this case that the Modesto Police Department completed a perfect investigation? No, you are not. I'm not going to stand up here and tell you that. These are human beings just like all of us.
GERAGOS: Objection. This is argument.
JUDGE: I think it is. Sustained. You are getting into argument.
DISTASO: So. Are these tips claim, people claiming to see Laci, police followed up on best they could. Let me just give you some examples. A woman named Diane Campos called in on the 26th. She sees the news. She says that she saw Laci walking her dog along a path, along the path in Dry Creek Park at 10:45 in the morning accompanied by two men. Well, the description of clothes that she gave, you are going to hear, didn't match the description of the clothes that Laci was recovered in. Also, she said that she saw this at 10:45. And the police knew that Karen Servas had found the dog at 10:18. You are going to hear from the detective who took that tip that he didn't think it was credible.
You are also going to hear from some other people, a woman probably, you probably going to hear from a woman by the name of Diane Jackson who called in a tip, saying that on the 24th, she called this in on the 27th. She said on the 24th she was driving down Covena Avenue, and she said she saw a van parked across the street from Laci and the defendant's home, and there were three men standing by the van. She didn't say she saw Laci, or anything really to do with it. But she wanted to call that in and report it this was at 11:40. Again, the police will tell you that they didn't find that to be a real credible lead in this case, because they knew the dog had already been found at 10:18. You are going to hear a number of tips like that, and a number of these sightings.
What I ask you to do at this stage is, just opening statement, is pay attention to the evidence as it comes in. Pay attention to what these people say, who saw Laci, was wearing because, what went out to the media is what the defendant said she was wearing when he left.
GERAGOS: Objection. This is argument.
DISTASO: This is evidence that's going to come in.
JUDGE: If it's going to be evidence it can come in. Overruled.
DISTASO: Like example you might hear from a man named Homer Maldonado. He gave multiple interviews to the media about what he says he saw. He claims to have seen Laci on the 24th. He tells the media, there is a recorded interview, you will see it, he is saying, I know it was her. He even though he'll tell you he never met her before, and never saw her before, they will, saw her in the media pictures, I know it was her, though, because she was wearing black pants and a white shirt. Well, you are going to hear that when Laci was found she was wearing khaki maternity pants. So pay attention to these sightings. You are going to hear about them in this case. And that's going to be part of this case.
Before we get going, I want to, I have a little four-minute clip that puts all these areas into picture that I want to play for you now, then I'm going to talk about where they were found. Before we go, this is the, before we start, this is a picture you saw of the defendant's home at 523 Covena. And go ahead and start it. Defendant said he went 90 miles. We're kind of jumping over, you know, along the Altamont there, jumping over to the Berkeley Marina.
Go ahead, pause it right there. The reason the tiles are different colors, you are going to hear, just so you know about this, these are more accurate aerial imagery. Since this was the only an area we were concerned about, we only used it on this particular area. I'm sorry.
Go ahead. You can see the areas here. These are GPS areas that we previously talked about. This movie will give you a good overview of the areas where the bodies were located when we talk about it. John, pause it right there. I'm going to put a, I have right here, because this is the area where Trimble, Deputy Anderson's dog was working, first picked up a Laci scent, and ran down that particular boat ramp, stopped about right there, gave the end-of-trail signal.
Go ahead. Again, this is going over the racetrack once. What it's going to do now is pan back to where the Berkeley Marina is in relation to that, as well as pan forward so you can get a view of what you can see from that particular location. This panning back towards the Berkeley Marina. You can see that location from the racetrack area. Pans around. There is Brooks Island. You can see it there. As well as there is the location where we're actually going down there. Laci's body was found. I'll show you that. Right around that. This is the location right here where Laciís body washed ashore and was found. Again, it will pan back show you where that is in relation to the Berkeley Marina right here. This is Brooks Island. There is the location where the defendant said he went fishing. Here's the location where Conner Peterson's body was found. There is a tidal flat. If you are at high tide, it's covered in water. At low tide it's flat ground. You are going to see this is all tidal flat. There is a walking path here. There is nowhere to drive down. You can't drive a car down to this particular location. You can walk along the beach here, at low tide. Then low tide, you can walk out onto the flat. But high tide it's mostly covered in water. Okay. It pans back, show you where it is in relation to the Berkeley Marina, where it is in relation to Laci's body being recovered. This is Brooks Island. There is the area where the defendant said he went fishing.
Go to April 12. On April 12th, there is a few things happening. There is a huge, not to overstate. There is a large storm that occurred that day. Springtime, we had late rains that year in 2003, April 12th. And there was a heavy, heavy, storm in San Francisco Bay. That caused higher than normal wave action there.
Click on that. Ralph Cheng is a hydrologist, PhD from US Geological Society, that you are going to hear from. And he's pretty much the main water expert in the Bay. He knows all about the tide, the current, how things work. That's what he's going to come here and talk to you about. He did this little chart there for the Modesto Police Department. Here's Brooks Island. Here's where Laci's body was recovered. Here is where Conner's body was recovered. The reason that this is dark on this chart is because that's those, it's a tidal flat. That means it's land in low tide, it's water in high tide. He's going to tell you that based on where these two bodies drifted from, where they had to separate from, and where one ended up, and then the other one, he's going to tell you where his best scientific guess is where those bodies had to go into the water to start their journey to shore to separate based on the currents, and the wind, and everything else that he used to figure this out, where, I mean where they had to separate to land and end up where they did. And that was the area right there on the chart where the red dot is. You can see this is that end of Brooks Island there is a no-landing sign this. Those were those areas that you saw earlier.
Go ahead. On the 13th, I'm not going to show you pictures of Conner's body yet. But on the 13th, Conner's body is found at low tide. So now we're at land, because it's a tidal flat at low tides along the Richmond shoreline. A man named Looby, what he is going to tell you, he was walking his dog that morning walking down along the beach. Was low tide. So that's land exposed there. And he's just running his dog up on ahead of him. His dog obviously finds something that he's interested in. He walks, over and he finds Conner Peterson's body washed up on the shore right ahead of the tide line. Here is picture of that in a minute. His autopsy takes place by Doctor Brian Peterson, who is a forensic pathologist from Contra Costa County on April 14th the next day. Conner is found on Sunday. The autopsy takes place on Monday, but prior to Laci's body being found.
Doctor Peterson is going to tell you that that's an important fact for him, and here is why. If he does an autopsy on just the fetus, a fetus only, like let's say a woman had a baby and someone took the baby and then just dumped it out somewhere, or the baby was stillborn and they dumped the body out somewhere, it only thing he is really concerned about is whether or not the baby was born alive. That's his main concern, when he does a fetus alone, doesn't know any other factors regarding that particular baby's birth. And that's what he's going to tell you, that when this body came to him, Laci had not yet been found. He was not yet able to associate this fetus with any particular pregnant woman. So what he was looking for was whether or not he could prove Conner Peterson was born alive or dead. And he's going to tell you that based on Conner's level of decomposition, he was not able to make that determination. Nor was he, at that exact moment, able to determine a cause of death, because all he had was a very badly decomposed fetus. That was it.
Later, before you go on. Later, Laci's body is found. I think the autopsy takes place like at nine on April 14th. Laci's body is found at 11:30. When he's able to put the two bodies together, he has an obviously pregnant woman who's been murdered, and he has another body. He's able to put those two bodies together. He is able to make a lot more conclusions. And I'll tell you about that. I'll talk to you about that in a minute. But I'm going to show you now the pictures of Conner's body being found. I'm just going to tell you straight up, these pictures are kind of graphic, and they are difficult to look at. So I just want to give you the warning. You are going to see them during the trial.
Go ahead. Let's start off with where, again, these are found in relation. The body is found behind the jetty right here in this particular tidal flat. Next picture. This is a picture that was taken later, not on the day Conner's body was find, was taken to show you what the tidal flat looks like at high tide. You can see the residue line is just barely exposed. Come down, there is no waves breaking over the jetty, but this entire flat is covered with water at about, I think it's about a foot and half, two feet deep.
Go ahead. There is another picture. This one is a little closer where body was actually, his body was actually found right about here where I'm showing the red dot. You can see is the blue building in the background. That's where Laci's body was found.
Go ahead. This was taken on the day that Conner Peterson's body was actually found. This was on April 13th, 2003. You can see it's low tide. You can see it's in April, because this is, grass, what not, is green. And this flag right here is where Conner Peterson's body, it's down there in the flat they marked the flag there when, they took the picture, and you can see the tidal line here. You can see the tidal line where the debris washed up with the tide.
Doctor Cheng is going to tell you the way things wash up with the tide, as the tide's receding heavy items are deposited first. They come over with the waves. As the tides recede, the heavy items settle first, and then the lighter items settle last. As the tide recedes, you can see that's what happened. Here's Conner's body. Obviously heavier than these areas of sea grass, and what not, debris, trash. And he's right ahead of it.
Go ahead, John. This is picture of Conner Peterson as he was found on April 13th, 2003. Here's the line of seaweed and trash and tidal debris. The ocean is towards the 12:00 o'clock part of the picture. And Conner Peterson is lying there. Conner Peterson when he was found was found with a piece of plastic material that was wrapped kind of around his body, under his arm, around his neck, kind of loose off to the side. You are going see a picture of that. What the doctor is going to tell you is that, in his opinion, based on his examination of Conner's remains, that plastic material had nothing at all to do with Conner Peterson's death, or really anything to do with him, other than the fact that he floated into it as he was coming to shore.
Next picture. You can see here a better picture, close up. I'm sorry, these pictures are difficult to look at. But you can see the plastic material. It's kind of looped around. Actually goes under his arm. It goes around his wrists, and then around here. This right here is just the top of a plastic coffee cup in case you are wondering.
Go ahead. Go on, Conner's body was, click back, John, for a moment. Okay, go forward. His body is, as you saw, is severely decomposed. However, when Doctor Peterson compares it to Laci's body, which you are going to see in a minute, it's severely less decomposed. And the reason Doctor Peterson is going to tell you that happened is because Conner Peterson was protected in Laci's womb. He's going to tell that you Laci was murdered, and Conner Peterson remains in her that whole time. She died. Then the baby died inside of her. She went into the water, and the baby went into the water inside of her. The way pregnant women decompose, and I hate to be graphic or anything about this. But this is evidence you need to know is the womb is very well protected. In fact, it's probably the most protected area of the woman's body as the decomposition process starts in. It's one of the last areas to actually decompose. What happened in this particular case, the doctor is going to tell you, when Laci was killed, she went into the water, and she started to decompose. The last thing that happened was her womb gave way, and probably due to that large storm which was excusing tidal action, and what not, her womb gave way, Conner Peterson had floated to shore. She broke free and she started floating to shore.
Here you will see Laci had been exposed to the outside elements, you are going to see from her rate of decomposition, for three to six months. A forensic anthropologist, Doctor Allison Galloway, examined her body, and that's the best that she can come up with for an estimate. She says that body was exposed open in the San Francisco Bay, I mean under water, for three to six months. Doctor Peterson and Doctor Galloway both are going to tell you that, at most, Conner Peterson was exposed to the outside elements, that means the water, for one day, or maybe two days at the most. There was a significant difference in their level of decomposition.
Go ahead, next slide. Conner had been soaking in a fluid environment since Laci's death. What that means is that the womb is full of fluid, amniotic fluids, and what not, that remains there even as the body decomposes. Conner's in that environment. As he is soaking, his body becomes soft. The doctor will use the term mascerated. The best way to think of it is, doctor is going to tell you is like a piece of paper that you soak in water. It slowly becomes soft and pulpy, very malleable. That's exactly what happened to a fetus if they die in utero, like the doctor will tell you happened in this particular case. Due to the level of decomposition also, his body became extremely malleable. He was almost kind of like jelly, for lack of a better term. His skull had not fused, meaning his head could collapse down. Doctor is going to explain all these things to you. Also finally, he's been soaking in this environment for such a long period of time, his body had swelled in size larger than the fetus normally would be at his level of development.
Go ahead. Doctor DeVore is another doctor, Greg DeVore is another doctor you are going to hear from. He's called a perinatal radiologist. He does mostly ultrasounds on pregnant women, and he tries to determine fetal growth and other things in pregnant women. That's his specialty. He did a postmortem ultrasound as well as measurements of Conner Peterson's femur bones. He did this to try and determine at what age Conner Peterson stopped growing.
The reason that that was important to him was because, if you go with, Doctor Peterson says Conner Peterson died in utero, inside Laci's body. The day he stopped growing is the day Laci died. Which he was able to determine, based on Doctor Galloway, the forensic anthropologist's measurements, as well as his own measurements, and his ultrasound, that Conner Peterson died some time between December 23rd, because we know that she was at the doctors, and the baby was healthy on the 23rd. And due to the ultrasound technology, some time between December 23rd and December 25th.
Now, he's going to tell you he was an accuracy range of plus or minus three days. Ultrasound technology is, this is not like, you are going to hear this not like the television show CSI. You are going to hear that repeatedly from the experts this is not like CSI. They can't come in here and solve this case for you in one hour. They can give you their best estimates and the technology. Best technology that Doctor DeVore had is a plus or minus range of three days. So to be completely accurate here, you would have to say that he died some time between December 20th, which we know can't be the case, because the baby was alive on the 23rd, or as late, I guess you could say, December 28th. I think the doctor would probably have to give you that outer range.
Go ahead, next. Slide. Like I told you before, he was found with a piece of plastic material wrapped around his neck. His arm and his chest and we're going to look at a closeup picture of the baby now, so just be ready for it.
Go ahead. You can see the plastic material looped around the baby. It was kind of tied in this loose kind of bow tie within, under his arm. This picture was taken after the baby was brought back to the coroner's facility. In order for that to happen, you know, the baby had to have floated to shore, come up over the jetty in the waves, been washed around in the tide. He then is taken up and very centimeter between this plastic material and the baby's can see it here, is that this tape is, I think it's two carefully, but the fact he has to be gathered up in a blanket, put into a bag, and then transported so the baby throughout this whole process has moved around quite a bit. The baby and the plastic material.
What you can see, though, and the doctors are going to tell you, is at that in doctor, basically in Doctor DeVore's, Doctor Galloway's and Doctor Peterson's opinion, this plastic material had nothing to at all to with Conner Peterson's death. What Doctor Peterson will tell you, you this.
JUDGE: How much longer are you going to be?
DISTASO: Thirty minutes more.
JUDGE: Let's give the court reporter a break. Ladies and gentlemen, I got to give the court reporter a break before his fingers fall off. So we'll take a recess until 3:15. And you have about a half hour more to go. Remember the admonition I have heretofore given you. All right. We'll take a recess until 3:15.
JUDGE: All right. This is People vs. Peterson. Let the record show the defendant is present with counsel. The jury is in the jury box with all alternates. Go ahead, Mr. DISTASO:, we changed reporters.
DISTASO: Thank you, your Honor. Laci, Laci was found along the Richmond shoreline area, like I told you, on April 14th. The next day, go ahead, show the pictures. Her autopsy took place later that day. And the same people participated, Dr. Allison Galloway, a forensic anthropologist, and Dr. Brian Peterson, the pathologist in Contra Costa County. Her body was found at 11:30 in the morning by a woman, Alena Gonzalez. You'll hear from her. Again, these pictures are fairly graphic, and I'm going to show you pictures of Laci now, so go ahead.
Again, just put this in perspective so you know where we're talking about. Here's that overview. The body was found right here. Next picture. This is an overview from April 14th. It was a picture taken from a helicopter. You can see that the vegetation here is green. That's because of the, of the rains and stuff that they've just had. And Laci's body is right here underneath the yellow tarp. You can see where it washed up on the shore. You're going to see pictures in a minute, but the water actually on the 12th came all the way up to the breakwater. This is low tide. You can see her body is fairly up on the shoreline.
Go ahead. Next picture. The tide is receding where it's taken. The high water mark is actually up here, above the body a fairly substantial amount. Laci's body as she was found on April 14th. Next picture. You can see the tide receding, and you can see Laci.
Go ahead. Finally, this is the last picture I'm going to show you of Laci's body that was found. You can see she was found with what would be her face down position. You can see this is her buttocks. Her ribs. When she was found at the time she was wearing a maternity bra, which you can see right here. You can see the tattered remnants of these khaki maternity pants coming down the front. The back is already worn away. The waistband of her pants is right here. She was found with her panties on, her khaki maternity pants over that, as well as a bra. You can see that her arms were missing, Laci's head was missing, as well as the lower portions of her legs. And I'm going to talk to you in a minute of what the doctors are going to tell you about that.
Go ahead. Go back. Next slide. This next picture actually is, is very hard to look at, so be advised.
Go ahead, John, show that picture of Laci's body. She's found, here's the lower portions of her leg. Here's her maternity pants on, her panties were on, and there's a line of duct tape that actually runs up and around her body. Next picture. You can see this is the top of it. The duct tape continues up around, this is actually Laci's torso. This is, this is her breast right here, and that's her maternity bra on top. Okay, click out of there.
Go ahead, click on that diagram. Missing. She's missing her head, lower portions of her arms, lower portions of her legs.
What the doctors are going to tell you about that is as someone decomposes, and I know this is very hard to hear and see, but as somebody decomposes, particularly in water, if you're floating down, you float face down if you die. If you throw the body in the water, the body, it would float face down. The head will be down, the arms and legs will be hanging down. Tidal action will cause those areas back and forth to move. The first parts to degrade are the joint areas in the arms, legs, and in the neck and head. That's why, that's how a body comes apart as it decomposes in the water. If the body is weighted down, such as with cement anchors or weight, that will accelerate that process. What happens is if you tie, if you tie weights around a body, and you don't even have to tie very, very significant weights.
What the doctors will talk to you about is when someone goes scuba diving, for example, if you have a 160 pound person in a wet suit, you don't have to put a 160 pounds of weight on them, just put 20 pounds on them to get rid of that buoyancy. What happens is if you weight somebody down, they'll go down to the bottom, but as the decomposition process starts, gases are produced in your body. And you'll usually cause a body to float, in many cases. Not always. But in many cases it will, if a body is weighted down and the body is floating above. So let's say you've got arms, weights on your arms and legs and you're floating above those weights in the tide, that back and forth action of going back and forth from those decomposition gases will accelerate the decomposition process. Now, those gases don't stay with you forever. It's not like once you produce the gases then you're, you are going to float forever. What would happen is the gas will produce, you might float up, the gas will be released, you might float down. That might happen one or two different times. Eventually, though, the gases will dissipate and you will sink. The body will stay down. The body wouldn't float and float indefinitely from that period on. That's not how it works.
Go ahead, click out of there. According to Dr. Galloway, as you saw, she was severely decomposed. There was really mostly just skeletal remains left. She's been in the San Francisco Bay for a period of three to six months. Next slide. Most of her internal organs were missing. That's due to a combination of factors. Internal organs decompose relatively quickly. Also, there was tidal action as well as significant action of animal feeding on her body. I know that sounds horrible, but the Bay is full of crabs and other organisms that will feed on decomposing flesh or a body that's put in there, and there's significant evidence of that on Laci's body.
What I also need to tell you is that her external genitalia was not injured. What that means is there was no injury noted to her vagina that was present on her body. Her cervix was intact and closed. What that means is Laci, I mean Conner Peterson was not born vaginally from Laci. She did not have a vaginal birth to produce Conner Peterson because her cervix was tightly closed when the doctor did the autopsy. There is also no evidence of tool marks on Laciís body. What forensic anthropologists look for when they do an autopsy of someone who has died, especially under these circumstances where it's clearly a homicide, they look for evidence of tool marks. What that means is incisions on bones, incisions on flesh to show, to see if the person was stabbed, to see if they were cut up in some way, to see if there was evidence of someone dismembered the person. There was no evidence on Laciís, Laci Peterson at all that she had any of those things happen to her, other than the fact that she just simply, her body was coming apart as part of the decomposition process. This is what Dr. Peterson will tell you.
Go ahead. And finally, due to her level of decomposition, he's going to tell you that he was not able to determine a cause of death. With her head missing and her organs and all of the parts of her that were missing, the only internal organs that was present was her uterus. That was intact except for a large tear that went down the front that Dr. Peterson will tell you was due from decomposition and tidal action. And it was the tear that allowed Conner Peterson to be released from her body, but due to her level of decomposition he was not able to determine the cause of death.
Go ahead, click out of there. Going back, don't click on there yet. Going back to this particular last weekend in April that I'm going to talk to you about today, the bodies were found on April 13th and April 14th. There was a media firestorm when these bodies were found. You're going to hear that, and might even have experienced some of that. It was well reported that there was a fetus and an obviously deceased woman who had been pregnant found, and there was much speculation in the press that this was Laci and Conner Peterson. The Department of Justice did accelerated DNA testing. Again, they're going to tell you this is not like CSI. You don't get DNA results in an hour. You don't get to take some blood, throw it in a computer and it spits out who did it, why they did it, everything else in one hour like CSI, but the accelerated DNA testing can be done in three to five days, and that's what they did in this case. So it was announced via a press release or something that the identification of these two bodies was going to take place most likely on Friday, April 18th.
Subsequently, let me just jump ahead on Friday, the Department of Justice did announce those results. And they'll come here and testify to you that it was proven pretty much, I mean it was like one in a billion chance that these were not Laci and Conner Peterson, so they can tell you that they conclusively believe the bodies, via DNA match, were Laci and Conner Peterson that were found.
Going back on the 18th, the 18th the situation was everyone was waiting for, the law enforcement authorities, the families, everybody was waiting for the results of the DNA testing to be announced; was this Laci and Conner or not. And while this was going on, the defendant in this case, the Modesto Police Department, after Laci and Conner were found, because they were fairly certain that's who these bodies were, got another author, I mean got the court to authorize another wiretap on the defendant's phones. They found out that the defendant was down in San Diego where his parents lived, and they started having the Department of Justice sometime during that week, I don't know the day, just kind of keep track on him, keep an eye on him. And when they did that, when the results came out, the Modesto Police Department decided, I mean made the decision to arrest the defendant for this crime.
Go ahead, click on the 18th. When that happened, they started following him that morning. Every, they were waiting for the results to be announced and Scott was being followed. While he was being followed, he realized that, and he led them, he led the officers on a very circuitous, long kind of track that went all the way up the 405 freeway over and down on 15 from San Diego, back down the 15 freeway all around. And he was driving very erratically on the freeway, stopping and starting and doing a number of other things. And there's some video that was shot from a Department of Justice plane or helicopter that you're going to see of a lot of that tracking through this particular area.
Finally, the decision is made, due to that erratic driving, to arrest the defendant. He drives into the Torrey Pines golf course where he's arrested. When they walk up on him, they find out, go ahead, click on that, that he's significantly changed his appearance. He's grown a heavy goatee which he dyed orangish-blond, he's dyed his eyebrows blond and died his hair blond. After he was arrested he talked to a woman by the name of Heather Richardson, a friend of his, and she asked him, because it was reported on the news that he dyed his hair this color and goatee and eyebrows, and she said what was going on with that, why did you do that. He said Oh, yeah, that really wasn't anything; what, what that was all about was I'd been swimming in a friend of mine's, Aaron Fritz's pool, and the chlorine in the pool had dyed my hair that color. You're going to hear from Aaron Fritz that Scott had never even been in his pool.
Go ahead, click on the next picture. This is a picture of him without the glasses. You can see the line of his hair where it was dyed.
Go ahead and click out. At the time he was arrested he was driving a Mercedes automobile that he had purchased using his mother's name. He had gone to a man named Michael Griffin on April 12th and that he had wanted to purchase this used Mercedes car for I think $3000. When they filled out the information to sell the car he said My name is Jacqueline Peterson, and Michael Griffin said Jacqueline Peterson, you know, you're a man, and the defendant said that's kind of A Boy Named Sue kind of thing. He had tried to purchase a vehicle prior to that from another man in San Diego I think the day before, using also his mother's name, but that man had already agreed to sell the car to someone else. And you're going to hear from him, too. At the time he was arrested the car was not registered to him. He had not filled out the registration paperwork, put it either in his name or his mother's name.
Go ahead, click on that. You can see this, this change of title form that Michael Griffin filled out. You can see his name down there, and the date of purchase was April 12th. And you can see that it was in the name of Jacqueline Peterson. Click out. You'll see those documents. At the time he was arrested he had almost $15,000 in cash on his person. He had, in, I think in one area he had $10,000, and then in somewhere else he had, like, $2000 and $2,000, some denomination like that. Like $14,000 something. Almost, almost $15,000. He had his brother's identification, he had other family members's credit cards, he had multiple changes of clothes and a large amount of camping gear. And I'm going to show you some pictures of the, I don't mean to block your way, I'm sorry, of that.
Go ahead, click on that $15,000. Here's, this is the amount of cash he had. Those are hundred dollar bills.
Go ahead. This is the other portion of cash. Like I said, it was divided up into two separate areas.
Go ahead. He had a double-sided knife that was down in the driver's side door, in the storage compartment on the driver's side door.
Go ahead. He had four separate cell phones. And you're going to hear some information about his cell phones, that he had actually gone and got another cell phone in a different name at one point, I think, in March. You'll hear from the investigator about that.
Go ahead. He had a credit card, he had a ticket from the San Diego Museum of Art, The Grandeur of Mexico.
Go ahead clicking through this. Here's, he had a different identification. He had his own driver's license as well as his brother's. He had a, a, credit cards for himself, and for one of his relatives, Ann Bird.
Go ahead. He had a shovel. He had a backpack with sandals. He had a number of items here. He had a rope, had a fishing knife, a water purifier, a hammock, some other things. Click through there. Get some close-ups. A number of different knives as well as work gloves. All this stuff he had with him in his car when he was arrested. He had a camp axe, binoculars, hammock and a snorkel and mask. He had a number of different pairs of shoes. He had a fishing pole. He had some reward posters for Laci showing the $500,000 that was available. He had a number of different pairs of clothes. Keep clicking through there.
Go ahead. More clothes. More clothes. More clothes. He had a picture of he (sic) and Laci. He had some other items.
Go ahead. More clothes. Clothes. And he also finally had a letter that Amber Frey had sent him, this was in a car that had he had just purchased on April 12th. Had a letter that Amber Frey sent him on February 16th, shortly before she stopped contact with him. Take, click out of there.
Ladies and gentlemen, this is a common sense case, and I, let me thank you right now. I appreciate your attention as I did this opening statement for you. At the end of this case, I'm going to ask you to find the defendant guilty of the murder of his wife, Laci, as well as his unborn child, Conner Peterson. Thank you.
JUDGE: All right. Thank you, Mr. Distaso. Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, we're not going to be able to hear from Mr. Geragos today because it's going to take an hour and a half to take down the present visual aid material and put up the visual aid material for Mr. Geragos. So I want to admonish you now not to discuss this case amongst yourselves or with any other person, or form or express any opinion about this case. You're not to listen to, read, or watch any media reports of this trial, or speak to any media representatives or their agents. You have to strictly adhere to that admonition, for obvious reasons. We're going to start tomorrow morning at 9:00 o'clock. We'll have the opening statement by Mr. Geragos. By that time all this visual aid stuff will be replaced and something else will be put there, and he'll take most of the day. Well, we don't know, but he'll take quite a while. Just in case we get done with enough time, we'll have one witness standing by to testify. That will be the housekeeper. So, thank you very much. Remember the admonition. See you tomorrow morning right back here at 9:00 o'clock. Thank you.