The Arrest & Arraignment:  Apr-Sep, 2003

1 Apr 2003 Scott's contact with Berkeley PD

On April 1, 2003, while in Berkeley Scott called the police to report some teens engaged in graffiti, and he gave his name and contact information, demonstrating that he was not trying to hide from LE.


2 Apr 2003 Grogan interviewed Dr. Boyd Stevens for help locating Laci

Dr. Boyd Stevens, ME for city and county of San Francisco and expert on tidal actions in the Bay, was interviewed by Grogan on April 2, 2003 for his assistance in determining where Laci's body might be.  Details of this interview came out in Geragos' cross examination of Grogan.  Grogan gave Stevens the following information:

Stevens expressed these opinions:

At the time Grogan had this conversation with Stevens, he had received back the negative test results for the pliers and the chicken wire.  He also knew that Home Depot sold the chicken wire in 25 foot rolls, and 24 feet 6 inches remained on Scott's roll.  He also had seen the cats scratching at the trees, confirming Scott's explanation for the chicken wire. 


This is a map showing the location of the Richmond Turning Basin.  I have inset the map identifying the location where Ralston said he found Laci's body, marked with the red X.  The 2nd map shows the locations of the Bay searches for Laci before the bodies were found.  Click to enlarge.



Stevens was not called as a witness in the Trial, either by the Prosecution or the Defense.  He has since passed away. 


3 Apr 2003 Scott emailed Amber

According to a police report by Jon Buehler, leaked to CourtTV, Scott sent Amber an email on April 3, telling her about flying a kite with his two nephews.  Amber gave this email to Buehler and DDA Dave Harris on June 6, 2004.


About 5 Apr 2003 Scott's new hair color

On April 19, Mike Richardson told NBC's Weekend Today show that he noticed Scott's hair color appeared different about two weeks earlier. He asked Scott if he had dyed his hair, and Scott replied he had been "swimming in a friend's pool and it got bleached."


7 Apr 2003 Brocchini said LE not focusing on Scott

Det. Brocchini specifically told Heather Richardson that LE was not focusing on Scott, apparently in an effort to get the Richardsons to solicit information from Scott about Laci's disappearance.


8 Apr 2003 Grogan submitted case to VICAP

Grogan submitted the case to the FBI Violent Criminal Apprehension Program (VICAP), a database used to track serial crimes.  For information on VICAP, go to


8 Apr 2003 Scott emailed Amber again

According to the same police report (see 3 Apr entry), Scott emailed Amber on April 8.  "It explains Scott was helping to rebuild a deck at a home for battered women and noticed that an approximate 22 year old young man was staring at him," Buehler wrote. "It was Scott's claim that he had tutored this young man as a child at St. Vincent de Paul Center for Homeless Children when he was in high school."  As with the April 3 email, Amber turned this over to Buehler and Harris on June 6, 2004


12 Apr 2003 Scott bought a used car

Scott used the alias Jacqueline Peterson and a Florida's drivers license to purchase and register a maroon 1984 Mercedes-Benz, the car he was driving when arrested. He paid for the car in $3600 cash. To explain the name Jacqueline, Scott told the seller, Michael Griffin, that it was a "boy named Sue" thing, and he was called Jack for short.  


12 Apr 2003 Storm in the Bay

The San Francisco Bay experienced a storm the weekend of April 12-13, which the State alleges combined with an extremely low tide to break Laci loose from the anchors and to wash Conner and Laci ashore.   


These plots are generated by the NOAA for the Richmond Chevron station for April 12-13.  1 knot = 1.15077945.  They show that very strong winds did not combine with an extremely low tide -- strong winds occurred during the rising tide.  




13 Apr 2003 Conner's body found

At 4:45 p.m., Michael Looby found Scott & Laci's baby son, Conner, in a tidal pool about 24 feet inland, and about 250 yards east of the last house in Richmond's Marina Bay, near Seabreeze Drive. Initial reports described the body as a "full-term" male infant, with umbilical cord still attached, and the Contra Costa coroner described the body as a "full-term baby boy."  Conner did not wash ashore


14 Apr 2003 Detective Hendee notified

Contra County Assistant Chief Dave Young phoned Detective Hendee to tell him that the body of a full-term male fetus was found washed ashore in Richmond CA the previous day. 


14 Apr 2003 Detective Grogan notified

8:00 am Grogan was notified by one of the police clerks that a fetus of unknown gender had been recovered in the San Francisco Bay.  At 1:00 pm he received a call fro the East Bay Regional Park Policy that they had recovered the body of an adult female at Point Isabel. According to their formulated plan, Detectives Hendee and Owen and Sgt. Carter responded to the site where the female was recovered, and Grogan sent members of the CA DOJ in San Diego to residences in that area and officers from MPD to Central California locations to try and locate Scott.  Grogan also asked Dr. Brian Peterson, who performed Conner's autopsy, to perform Laci's.  He asked that announcements to the media extend the time frame expected to get DNA results back so they would have time to locate Scott and put surveillance on him.


14 Apr 2003 Conner's autopsy

Dr. Brian Peterson, forensic pathologist with Contra Costa County, performed the autopsy on Conner. These are the elements of the autopsy Peterson testified to in the Preliminary hearing. 

History: The history provided to Peterson was that of a body found on the shore. Peterson did not know this was Conner and the female body had not yet been found. Consequently, the typical forensic pathology question in this type of case is: is this a stillborn baby or a live-born baby? Initially, then, Peterson was not concerned with explaining Conner's state of decomposition compared to Laci's because Laci wasn't yet known about. 

External Exam: The external exam revealed no clothing, since it was a fetus. There was some material associated with the body, particularly some clear plastic tape (a lot like wrapping tape or boxing tape), one and a half loops of plastic tape around the neck of the fetus, with a knot near the left shoulder.  The skin beneath the tape was not injured, and there was approximately a 2-centimeter gap between the neck and the tape when pulling the tape so it was firm against one side of the neck. Peterson removed the tape by cutting it and gave it to a criminalist. Peterson concluded the association between the body and the tape was coincidental--the tape simply ended up on the body.  There was also some material over the left ear, adhering to the head, which Peterson believed to be kelp or other vegetative material.  However, when it was removed, the ear remained folded over and there was a purple discoloration on Conner, which Peterson said is more consistent with the iodine in kelp than with bruising. (Peterson is not the person who removed this material from Conner's ear). Conner was decomposing, in general terms.  He weighed 1160 grams (approximately 2. 5 pounds). A crown-of-head measurement could not be taking because the head was collapsing.  Crown-heel length was 48 centimeters (approximately 19 inches). Based on these measurements, Conner could have reached full-term. The skin was quite soft, in keeping with maceration, an effect on tissue soaking in fluid. No vernix on the body. The bones in the skull were overriding, which happens as the brain liquefies. There was a tear near the right shoulder that exposed skeletal muscle and the structures beneath. The tear extended onto the abdominal wall and portions of the small and large intestines protruded through the tear. There was no scalloping, no curved marks around the edges. Concluded it was simply from tissue falling apart or being pulled apart due to tidal action, it wasn't due to animal feeding. A portion of the colon protruded from the anus. There was a portion of the umbilical cord present, measuring a half centimeter (less than a 1/4 inch), and the edge was ragged, like it fell apart or pulled apart. It was not cut.  

Internal Exam: There were no specific changes of either congenital abnormality or disease. The organs, in general, were soft and liquefied, in keeping with decomposition. The spleen and kidney could not be weighed because they were liquefied. There was more liquefaction inside the right side of the chest as opposed to the left because of the tear.  The changes were simply the result of decomposition and immersion. 

Estimated gestational age: Nine months, based on the crown to heel and the crown to rump measurement. However, the body was soft and decomposing.  As tissues decompose, they tend to expand, and expanding tissues can affect the whole body. Peterson left the gestational age determination to Dr.  Galloway, an anthropologist.  

Live birth: Peterson could not rule out live birth. 

Plastic bag found near Conner: Under cross, Peterson was asked if Conner had been placed in a bag and the tape was around the neck having been looped around once and knotted so that once placed in the water, the baby would have been in a protected environment--if that was consistent with Conner's decomposition and the tape around his neck. Admitted it was possible that Conner's body was protected in some other way, but did not consider it likely. Peterson was not aware of the plastic found near Conner when he did the autopsy. 

Float test not performed: The float test is used to determine live birth, with the idea that if a baby is stillborn, it has never had a chance to draw a breath, and thus the lungs are heavy and simply will not float in water. On the other hand, if the baby is live born and has drawn breath, lungs are expanded, there is air, and they will float. Problem is there can be postmortem gas formation in the lung due to decomposition. Peterson does not rely on the float test and did not perform one.  

Estimated time in water unprotected: Not more than a couple of days. 


14 Apr 2003 Laci's body found

At 11:45 am, Contra Costa police received a tip that a dismembered, female body was found at Point Isabel by Elena Gonzalez. The partial remains -- a torso and a leg -- were discovered less than a mile across the Richmond inner harbor, lodged in concrete rip rap at Point Isabel, the popular East Bay Regional Park District dog-walking park.   

Laci was wearing a pair of tan maternity pants, with a drawstring, zipper, button, and pin tuck, with a Motherhood Maternity maker tag that included the style number. Detective Owens confirmed with Motherhood Maternity in Modesto that either Scott or Laci purchased that style of pants in that color.


14 April 2003 Ron Grantski hears about the bodies

Sharon described the manner in which Ron Grantski found out the bodies had been found in her book, For Laci:

On a beautiful springlike Monday, the biggest pieces of the puzzle emerged, answering the questions we'd feared. It was April 14, and Ron had left the house early to work on some problems at a shopping center he'd helped build in Los Banos, about fifty miles south of Modesto. By early afternoon he was finished, and on his way back he stopped at a favorite fishing spot at the San Luis Reservoir. He didn't even take his fishing pole out of his vehicle. He just sat on the bank, enjoying the quiet and sunshine. This was how he dealt with the sadness and stress, and at one point, he looked up at the clouds and started talking to God.

"God, I don't ask for much, but I know Laci's dead," he said. "I want you to give her back to us. Sharon has to be able to mourn. If she doesn't get Laci back, I don't think she'll ever get better. If you could help, I'd sure appreciate it."

A short time later, he got back in his truck and saw the message light flashing on his cell phone. It was his friend Frank, asking if he'd heard the news. Ron called him back immediately and asked, "Have I heard what?"

"They found a body washed up on the shore in the Bay Area," Frank said. "I think they found a baby yesterday."

Ron's eyes were blurred with tears as he looked up at the sky and said, "Thank you, God." Then he called me. (212)


14 Apr 2003 Detective Grogan interviewed Dr. Peterson

3:15 pm, Dr. Peterson told Detective Grogan that he could not say for certain whether the child had been stillborn, and that he could not be certain whether or not the child had gone through the birthing process. He said the lungs were small and wet and no determination if the child had ever taken a breath could be made based on the decomposition.


14 Apr 2003 Laci's autopsy

6:30 pm. Dr. Brian Peterson also performed the autopsy on Laci. 

History: x-rays were taken prior to Peterson's arrival, which he examined, looking for evidence of foreign material, such as bullets, blades, that sort of thing.  There were none.  

External--Body: Peterson received the body in the prone position, which is unusual. The body consisted of a torso, portions of both upper extremities, portions of the lower extremities. Missing were the head and neck, the forearms and hands, and the left lower leg, the tibia, the fibula, and the foot.  In terms of the chest, the skin, the tissue beneath the skin, the fat, the muscle, all that was absent, and the collarbones, the clavicles, the breastbone, the sternum, the ribs were all exposed. The organs normally associated with the chest, the hear, the lungs, etc., were all absent. From the umbilicus (bellybutton) up, the abdominal wall was absent upward, exposing the bones of the chest, and a portion of the soft tissue was absent down to about the level of the umbilicus. From the waist down, beginning about the level of the umbilicus, the skin was absent, the fat was still present, and the fat had undergone a postmortem change called adipocere, which is a soap-like substance that's formed when fat is soaked in cold water. Her external genitalia were unremarkable, there was no evidence of injury. Much of the skin, subcutaneous tissue was present on the upper arms and on the thighs. The joints were exposed but no evidence of injury, no marks on the bones, such as a saw blade or knife might leave. Neither was there evidence of chewing. There were barnacles on the clothing, but none on the body. 

External--Clothing: The clothing consisted of an underwire brassiere, with a label that said Bali 3630 C 40/90. The brassiere was in place and intact, secured by two hook-and-loop-type fasteners, and, as best as Peterson could tell, had not been disturbed. Additional clothing consisted of khaki-colored trousers, with a label that had the brand name Motherhood, size S for small. Beneath the trousers were panties, with a label with Jockey 7. The trousers had a peculiar shredding effect. The legs were basically reduced to thread, and within those threads, the calcification, or stone-like material, was deposited. The button closure was intact, the zipper was intact, and there were cloth draw cords inside, also intact. The buttocks of the panties was missing, and the front portion was intact. There was some duct tape on the left thigh. When Peterson turned the body over, he observed the duct tape was sticking to the front waistband of the trousers. 

Internal: Besides missing the chest organs, there was no liver, spleen, kidneys, pancreas, intestines. The uterus was present, the fetus, placenta and umbilical cord were absent. The uterus was still in normal anatomic position, its attachments to the pelvis still intact. It measured 23 centimeters (little over 9 inches) and weighed 263 grams (little more than 1/2 lb. ). It was quite thin, measuring 2 millimeters in thickness at most. The fundus, or top part of the uterus, was essentially abraded and friable, which means soft and crumbly, with no evidence of animal feeding. No evidence of cut marks, not evidence of other specific tool marks, but the was there was thin and it had been more or less rubbed away, and it was empty. Down at the base of the uterus, in the pelvis, the birth canal was closed and appeared normal. There was some fraying of the right rib number 9 and the inner portions of the bone were exposed. There were also lateral fractures on the sides of left ribs 5 and 6. Peterson could not say with confidence whether these were antemortem (before death) or postmortem (after death) fractures.  

Explanation--condition of Laci's body: Laci's body being in prone position and the damage to her body is consistent with a body that's free to move in the water or float--it's going to float face down. It's the center of gravity issue, due to the fact that the extremities are rather heavy and they are going to hang down. Left to its own devices, the body will float in the prone (face down) position. Bodies tend to sink, and at some point they tend to float up. This depends on the postmortem change, gas formation, etc. Bodies typically spend some of their time near the bottom and some of their time near the top. If they are near the bottom, they are open to effect by physical phenomenon, such as tides, currents, those sorts of things. A body will then be pulled over the bottom structures, rocks, sand, whatever else might be down there, which are destructive--an abrasive-type action on the body that will cause some of the changes Peterson observed in Laci. The forearms were absent, the lower leg was absent on the left because those portions were hanging down and more subject to that damage. Since the uterus is relatively heavy, the anterior abdominal wall and that upper portion, the fundus of the uterus, are also exposed to that type of damage.  

Explanation--Condition of Conner compared to condition of Laci: Laci's body showed evidence of animal feeding, associated with exposure to the environment, while Conner's did not. Conner was decomposed, but no evidence of animal feeding. Conner was inside Laci when Laci's body was deposited in the water or ended up in the water, but over time the tidal action and animal feeding, as the abdominal wall wore away, eventually the upper part of the fundus of the uterus wore away, and at that time, the fetus was released. Peterson said it would be hard to provide the level of protection the uterus would provide through another means, such as a plastic bag.  

Explanation--Cause of disarticulation: No bite marks or other positive evidence that animal feeding caused the disarticulation.  

Explanation--mineral deposits on the pants: These were discrete deposits. How a body acts in the water, how it tends to submerge and then resurface, if this happened over a period of time, with alternate layers of wetting and drying, it could account for the minerals building up. 

Estimate of time in the water: Months. 

Cause of death: Undetermined. With respect to the body that was present, there were nothing to indicate cause of death: no tool marks, no bullets, no evidences of injury, nothing helpful from the toxicology report--nothing to indicate anatomic or chemical cause of death.  

Toxicology report: Skeletal muscle tissue was tested for toxins. Caffeine was detected. Peterson did not know how long caffeine can remain in the skeletal tissue.  


14 Apr 2003 Laci and Conner examined by an Anthropologist

Dr. Allison Galloway performed an examination of Laci and Conner. She estimated 3-6 months in the marine environment for Laci. The postmortem interval of Conner was consistent with Laci; however, Conner's body was more protected from environmental degradation than Laci's. 

Estimated gestational age for Conner: 33-38 weeks. Galloway did 5 separate bones that she measured in 4 different ways to determine gestational age, comparing the actual bone measurements to 1) the Fazekas and Kosa, Forensic Fetal Osteology; and 2) the Sherwood's Fetal Age, Methods of Estimation and Effects of Pathology. Some of Galloway's estimates were as high as 40 weeks, and none lower than 34 weeks. The majority of the estimates are 35 weeks or higher. Peterson said he did no research to determine what gestational developments between weeks 32 and 39 may have been present in Conner.  

Injuries to Laci's ribs: Rib fractures to the left number 5 and 6 she called perimortem fractures, meaning they could have occurred before or after death. The left 6th rib was fractured approximately 10 centimeters (little less than 4 inches) from the vertebral end, consistent with an in-bending force.  


14 Apr 2003 Black Tarp or Clear Plastic?

A large black tarpaulin came ashore about 60 yards from where Laci's body was found, although it was not known whether it was connected to the case, said East Bay Region Park Police Chief Norm Lapera. The coroner is also trying to determine whether a bone found Monday in the marina area by a local resident is linked to the remains. In its Sep. 23, 2003 issue, the National Enquirer claims the police have lifted fingerprints from duct tape found on this tarp, and also were matching the duct tape to that found on Laci's body and at Scott's home and warehouse office. Tests were being done to determine if there are eight so-called "minutiae points" to the prints found on the tape, the minimum number under California Department of Justice standards, to declare them a match to a specific person. However, on Sep. 16, 2003, the ModBee reported that "a sizable bundle of the distinctive clear plastic with what appeared to be a length of black electrical tape attached to it was recovered 50 yards from Laci's remains and was forensically analyzed, according to a source. Results of those tests are not known. A separate length of black plastic similar to roofing material also was found about 50 yards from the body. The objects appear to be among at least 31 items the defense has asked to examine after they were recovered from the East Bay and logged as potential evidence." 


14 Apr 2003 DNA Testing

State crime lab technicians analyzed DNA swabbed from the mouths of Sharon and Dennis Rocha to compare with samples from the severely decomposed corpse. The lab in Richmond also compared tissue and bone from the two unidentified corpses with DNA extracted from strands of hair taken from Laci Peterson's brush. Scott's DNA was available from a previous search warrant.


15 Apr 2003 Sharon notified that bodies were found

Sharon had her phone unplugged, so Kim Peterson went over to her house and told her the bodies had been found.  Sharon called Scott and left a message:  Scott, this is Sharon.  You need to come home immediately.  She said she left her phone number, but Scott didn't return her call.


15-18 Apr 2003 Scott under surveillance

Worried that Scott might flee to Mexico, Attorney General Bill Lockyer assigned four agents to monitor him. They tapped Scott's phone and attached a transmitter to the maroon Mercedes Benz coupe that he had been driving.  Authorities watched him around the clock. Scott soon realized he was being followed. According to the police, it seemed to embolden him, and he often baited the cops, jumping from his car and yelling, "Why don't you go ahead and arrest me?" 


17 April 2003  Stripper claimed Scott wanted her to go to Mexico with him

On April 21 a stripper in a San Diego club told the MPD that she had a short affair with Scott and on April 17, the day before his arrest, he asked her to run off to Mexico with him. She didn't want her information to be known because she feared recrimination at work.


17 Apr 2003 Probable Cause Arrest Warrant

A Probable Cause Arrest Warrant on two counts of homicide was issued for Scott.  Dennis Rocha, in an interview with WBZ-TV in Boston, accused Scott of murdering Laci. "He never looked me in the eye.  And he never pleaded for her.  He just shows no remorse." Rocha also said he believed the affair with Amber was the motive. He said Scott and Laci "got along real good," but suspects Laci found out about Amber. 


18 Apr 2003 Scott's activities

Scott had just filed his Income Tax Returns, paid his car insurance, still had an un-cashed paycheck, and had some children's books he was going to give to his nieces and nephews the following Sunday, which was Easter.


18 Apr 2003 Scott Arrested

Scott was arrested at 11:10 a.m., hours before DNA analysis confirmed the bodies found were Laci and Conner.  Modesto authorities said they took Scott into custody in San Diego because they feared he may be getting ready to flee to Mexico. Scott was arrested at an intersection near the Torrey Pines Golf Course by DOJ agents, with Detectives Brocchini, Carter, Grogan, and Buehler about a quarter mile away. Detective Buehler described the location of the arrest as: "There's an overpass that runs north and south along the coast there. The golf course is between the ocean and the freeway. And when you come off the freeway and you just kind of continue turning basically 180 degrees to your right, you end up facing on a road that leads up to the parking lot of the golf course, and it was right on that road."  LE started to trail Scott in the morning.  He realized he was being followed and led them on a circuitous route, driving erratically on the freeway, starting and stopping.  He had not yet registered the car.

The following items were in Scott's vehicle: four cell phones, a driver's license belonging to Scott's brother John on the center console and his own drivers license in his wallet, which was also on the console; a wide array of clothing, a large amount of camping gear (a backpack that had a large length of climbing rope attached to the side of it, shoes and other footwear usually worn camping, a camp ax, a series of folding knives, a folding saw, a hammock, a water purifier, a camp stove, a filleting knife, a fishing rod and reel); and a total of nearly $15K in cash on his person and in the vehicle, in $100 bills .  He had a picture of Laci and him and a Feb. 16 letter from Amber. 

He arrived at the Stanislaus County Jail shortly before midnight under the watchful eye of the media and to the jeers of a crowd of about 300 onlookers. "He'll be charged with capital murder, with the option of seeking the death penalty because Peterson is being charged with a double homicide," said Stanislaus County District Attorney Jim Brazelton. "There are no other suspects in this case." 


18 Apr 2003 Grieving for Laci and Conner

In a personal letter to an unidentified friend, Scott said "I was told that they were gone on the car ride to Modesto by the detectives," he wrote. "I didn't believe . . .  wouldn't believe them.  I only knew it was true on the next morning when I saw the paper.  .  .  .  I am finding it so difficult to grieve for them here. At night, I have my head buried in a blanket, I don't want the other inmates to see the tears."


18 Apr 2003 Scott's conviction a "slam dunk"

In the press conference announcing the positive identification of Laci and Conner, and Scott's arrest, California Attorney General Lockyer said: "This is a compellingly strong case. I would call the odds slam-dunk that he is going to be convicted." Lockyer later claimed he was referring to the positive identification of the bodies. 


19 Apr 2003 Scott booked

At 12:09 a. m., Scott was booked at the Stanislaus County Jail. Much was said about Scott's much-changed appearance at the time of his arrest. Here are two pictures of Scott from the ModBee: the first taken in mid-February, and the second at the time of his arrest.


19 Apr 2003 Miguel Espidia called in a tip

Brocchini testified that Espidia called the police tip line on April 19, 2003, the day after Scott was arrested.  He said he had known Scott and Laci Peterson since 1995. He went to college with Scott at San Luis Obispo. He knew them after Laci and Scott Peterson got married. He played racquetball with them two or three times a week. He called and said he had a conversation with Scott Peterson in 1995 where Peterson told him how he could get rid of a body if he killed somebody. He said that he would tie a bag around the neck, the neck with duct tape, put weights on the hands, throw it in the sea and the fish activity would eventually eat -- the body would float up, the fish activity would eat away from the head and the hands and the body would float up, no fingers, no feet, so there could be no identification. Brocchini said he did not follow-up on this tip because it was not credible and he could not corroborate it.  The tape recording of the tip, however, showed that Espidia never referred to duct tape, raising questions about the integrity of Brocchini's testimony.  On cross-examination, Geragos suggested Espidia also said a lot of bad things about Laci in the tip.


21 Apr 2003 Scott arraigned

A Criminal Complaint was filed in Stanislaus County Superior Court charging Scott with committing one count of felony murder, in that he did willfully, unlawfully, and feloniously and with malice aforethought murder Lace Denise Peterson, and that he did act intentionally, deliberately, and with premeditation. During the commission of the murder of Laci, with the knowledge that Laci was pregnant, Scott did inflict injury on Laci, resulting in the termination of her pregnancy. Scott was charged with a second count of felony murder, in that he did willfully, unlawfully, and feloniously and with malice aforethought murder Baby Conner Peterson, a fetus, and that he did act intentionally, deliberately and with premeditation. Charging more than one murder in the 1st or 2nd degree qualified the case for the death penalty. Scott, dressed in a red prison jumpsuit and heavily shackled, pled innocent to murdering his wife and unborn son. Sitting nearby were Laci's family: Sharon, Amy, Brent, and Ron Grantski. Also in the court were Scott's parents: Lee and Jackie, and one of Scott's sisters. Public defender Tim Bazar was assigned to the case after Peterson said he could not afford to hire a lawyer. The case was continued until a May 6 bail hearing.


21 April 2003  Rocha press conference

Laci's family held a press conference, their first public appearance since the bodies were found.


21 April 2003  Kim McGregor claimed a sexual interlude with Scott

Detective Grogan interviewed ID tech Denise Ducot, who said she worked with McGregor at Valley Oak Pediatrics Center.  McGregor was claiming a sexual interlude with Scott after Laci's disappearance.


25 Apr 2003 Search warrant

A Search warrant was issued to take a sample of Scott's hair, a full-body photograph, and photographs of his body hair. DA Brazelton announced that his office will seek the death penalty, after consultations with the Rocha family.


25 Apr 2003 Scott wrote letter to Amber

According to a police report written by Jon Buehler and leaked to CourtTV, Scott wrote Amber a letter.  "Scott believed that he would be exonerated for these charges, and that while he was in custody he would be using his position ... to do the work of the Lord," Buehler wrote in a summary report. "He thanked Amber for her influence with this, and apologized to Amber for having been caught up in the intense media coverage."  "Scott further wrote that May 4 was Laci's birth date, and that he was asking friends to fly a kite in her memory. He ended this letter by stating words to the effect that children are miracles and gifts," Buehler wrote in his report.  This letter, along with the April 3 and April 8 emails, was turned over to Buehler and DDA Dave Harris on June 6, 2004.


30 Apr 2003 Lee Peterson confronted Nancy Grace

Larry King Live discussed the possibility that Mark Geragos would become Scott's new attorney. Larry's panel discussion included Nancy Grace, Court TV host and former prosecutor. At the end of the show, Lee Peterson called in to confront Nancy directly about her role in convicting Scott in the court of public opinion. 


1 May 2003 Gwen Kemple called Grogan

Gwen Kemple testified that she called Det. Grogan and volunteered the information that Scott was at the Covena home from 9:00-11:30 on the morning of the 25th and wasn't doing anything to assist the search for Laci.  She started to think about things that she thought were a little unusual and mentioned it to Sharon, who told her to call Grogan.  She said she didn't provide the information earlier because no one asked her. 


1 May 2003 Meeting with Ralph Cheng, USGS Sr. Research Hydrologist

Detectives Dodge Hendee and Phil Owen met with Dr. Ralph Cheng of the USGS to enlist his help in identifying a high probability area for the FBI divers out of New York to search for Laci's missing body parts and the anchors.  Attending the meeting were FBI divers Richard Tait and Robert Chacon, FBI agent Laura Nielson, and Dr. Cheng's associate, Hank Chezar. The detectives took the others out to the site where Laci was found and pointed out the site where Conner was found and Brooks Island.  Subsequently, Dr. Cheng sent Detective Owen a projected path that the bodies traveled and a time at the height of the previous storm during which Laci could have broken free.  This meeting re-opened the water operations.


2 May 2003 McAllister uncovered exonerating evidence

In interviews on the 1st and 2nd, Kirk McAllister said the police approached this entire case with the attitude "We have our theory, don't confuse me with the facts." "I've made a bond with the citizens who've come forward and talked to me and talked to my investigator, and what I could promise these people was what they tell us will ultimately come out in trial. But I'm not gonna do like the police have and call a press conference and visit this hurricane of publicity on these people. ... I'm not gonna disclose what I have – before I have to do it – either to stroke my ego or kiss the media's a--."


2 May 2003 MPD contacted Sonic Technologies

Detective Hendee placed a phone call to Demille, of Sonic Technologies, and then talked to him on the phone on May 5.  Initially, Sonic said it would participate in a new search, but then offered to review the sonar images collected by Gene Ralston in earlier searches of the Bay and give a second opinion on what information they provided. 


4 May 2003 Laci's Memorial Service

Thousands attended the public Memorial Service for Laci on her 28th birthday. Scott asked to attend the Memorial, but the request was denied by his jailers. Some reports suggest Laci's family barred him from attendance. None of Scott's family attended.   


5 May 2003 McAllister's response to the DA's request for Discovery

On May 5, 2003, prosecution investigator Kevin Bertalotto wrote this report: "On 5-5-2003 at approximately 0730 hours, I opened an email sent to me by Deputy District Attorney Rick Distaso, which requested that Kirk McAllister be contacted and asked if he had any information, which might clear Scott Peterson of the charges he is accused of. On 5-5 at approximately 0825 hours, in the Stanislaus County Court Building in the hallway near Department 8, I saw Kirk McAllister standing in the hallway. I know Kirk McAllister as a local criminal defense attorney and have had dealings with him in the past on criminal cases that I was working. I approached Kirk and said good morning and shook hands with him and he reciprocated. I asked Kirk if he wanted to share any information to clear Scott Peterson to the District Attorney's Office. Kirk responded, "Go f--- yourself." I responded by saying, "Don't shoot the messenger, we've always got along good." Kirk said, "Yeah I know," and reached out and touched my upper arm and then said, "Well take this message to whoever, go f--- yourselves."


6 May 2003 Bail Hearing


8 May 2003 Jury pool survey

A Channel 5 poll of the jury pool showed that 83% in the Bay Area already believe Scott is guilty or probably guilty. In the Central Valley, which includes his hometown of Modesto, eight out of ten people felt same way.


9 May 2003 Karen Servas filed complaint against Mark Geragos

A reporter for the Globe showed up at Servas' place of employment to ask questions.  Servas suspected Mark Geragos sent him because of some remarks Geragos made to the press earlier that day about a mystery woman.  Geragos suggested she suspected he sent the reporter merely because the reporter was also from Los Angeles.


16 May 2003 Dr. Cheng provided the MPD with his high probability area

Dr. Cheng sent his identification of the high probability area to the MPD, which Detective Hendee then expanded to include a broader search area, in case the evidence being searched for wasn't in Cheng's specific area.  The Coast Guard divided the broader search area into 1/4 mile x 1/4 mile grids, making a total of 35 grids.  The search operations began the same day.  6-7 FBI divers from New York were assigned  with the Marine 1 boat to search the 700 meter x 700 meter high probability area. 


17 May 2003 Bay search continued

Besides Laci's missing head and limbs, Investigators are still searching the San Francisco Bay for missing items they believe belong to Scott: a 55-gallon drum, for which he had a receipt, but whose disappearance he could not explain; several large, cement blocks; several fishing weights; and fishing hooks. Sources say those items could be on the floor of the San Francisco Bay, where Laci's body was found in mid-March. Defense pursues a "two-killer" theory and also looking into whether a satanic cult killed Laci, a theory they say was first introduced by police.   


19 May 2003 Amber hired Allred

Amber Frey hired victim rights attorney Gloria Allred.


22 May 2003 Mystery woman in defense custody

KNBC-TV in Los Angeles reported that Scott's defense team had in protective custody a woman who called police to say she could clear Scott Peterson's name. The woman alleges that the deaths are linked to a satanic or cult killing and that "crazies" are involved, and is providing the defense with crucial information that may lead to the identification of Laci's murderer(s). The district attorney in Modesto had no comment. 


28 May 2003 SDEA search warrant

Detectives obtained a search warrant to receive records from AT&T Wireless, Nextel, Cingular, Sprint, and SBC in connection with the SDEA's investigation of Scott's drug connection.  The summary of evidence filed June 16 revealed very little about the case.  


30 May 2003 Peterson - Rocha feud erupted

Several days earlier, Greta van Susteren interviewed Sharon and Ron on On the Record. They indicated that the Petersons were denying them access to the Covena home, and that Sharon very much wanted to be able to go into the house and just sit and be with Laci. At the end of the show, Jackie Peterson called in and said the Petersons were unaware of this desire. The two families agreed that the Rochas would have full access to the house once the Defense had its opportunity to thoroughly examine it, and they set a date. They also agreed that both families would cease to do media interviews. Apparently inflamed by the leak of Conner's autopsy report, and alleged refusal by Geragos to let them in the house, Sharon, Brent, Ron and a group of friends entered the home, removing pickup loads of possessions, including a rocking chair and Conner's crib.  


4 Jun 2003 Brown Van Could Be Missing Link

Scott's defense team hopes that stains found in a mysterious brown van that could come from duct tape and blood are the evidence they need to save Scott. That defense team strategy, details of which were obtained by ABCNEWS, stem from a Modesto police report that outlines a conversation that took place between a rape counselor and police. The report reveals that a rape crisis counselor told investigators about a woman who said she was attacked in the area a week before the young pregnant woman went missing. The counselor told police the woman she helped said she had been attacked on Dec.18, by men carrying out some sort of ritual. The rape counselor said the woman explained that the man had bragged they would murder someone on Christmas Day.


4 Jun 2003 Hair from Pliers sent to FBI lab for mtDNA testing

Senior Criminalist Bill Hudlow packaged and transported the hair from the pliers to Terry Scott of the FBI. Scott then personally transported the evidence to the FBI Trace Evidence Unit in Quantico VA to be examined for mtDNA testing. The evidence was specifically given to Jamie Nevus and Connie Fisher.  Through a process of more transfers at the FBI lab, the hair samples ended up being tested first by Karen Korsberg, and then by Kim Reubush. Eventually Connie Fisher, who testified at the preliminary hearing on the mtDNA results, examined the larger hair fragment.


5 Jun 2003 Human body parts found

Yolo County authorities confirmed that parts from as many as four human bodies were discovered this week outside a trash bin in a trailer park in Davis. Scott's defense expressed interest in the find as a possible solution to Laci's murder.


6 Jun 2003 Amber's nude photos

Hustler magazine bidding for nude pictures of Amber Frey.


6 Jun 2003  Autopsy reports remain sealed

Judge Girolami refused a Prosecution request to unseal Laci's and Conner's autopsy reports. The Prosecution said leaks about the reports were drawing false conclusions favorable to the defense.


6 Jun 2003 Death Certificates filed

Death certificates for both Laci and Conner were filed and released to the public. Laci's cause of death was undetermined, but the manner of death was homicide. Time and place of death for Laci were given as the date and place where her body was discovered. Conner's certificate said he was born dead, and gave the date and place where his body was found. The death certificates were signed April 21, 2003.   


12 Jun 2003 Gag order

Judge Girolami issued a gag order barring lawyers, witnesses and police officers from publicly discussing details about the The gag order did not name attorneys for witnesses, which exempted Gloria Allred, Amber Frey's attorney. Judge Beauchesne in Stanislaus County Superior Court ordered the unsealing of eighth search warrants and related documents in the case, but postponed their release until July 8.   


13 Jun 2003 More wiretap calls found

Prosecutors revealed the existence of 176 audio recordings they said were stored in a computer without anyone's knowledge. The recordings were found June 13 when Detective Steven Jacobson reviewed calls from two wiretaps to be sure all the recordings requested by the court had been turned over. In his affidavit, Jacobson said he and Kevin Clements, a software company employee, listened to one of the calls and Jacobson realized he had never heard it. 


16 Jun 2003 Bertalotto interviewed Harvey Kemple

The investigator for the DA's office, Kevin Bertalotto, reported on his interview with Harvey Kemple.  The focus of the interview was Kemple's observations that Scott was more upset about the burnt chicken at a July 4 family barbecue than about Laci being missing.  Kemple volunteered the information on Scott's comments to him on the night of the 24th, including what Laci was wearing and that Scott had been golfing that day. 


21 Jun 2003 Items found near the Canal in Rydin Park

Kris Buelma, Patrol Officer, East Bay Regional Park, responded to a call about 2 p.m. on June 21, 2003, reporting objects found in the general area of the parking lot on the Rydin Road side of the park.  A citizen and her dog found the plastic items.  A bike/pedestrian bridge goes over the canal.  Buelma said the items were between and underneath the concrete and she had to move some of the concrete to remove the items.  She collected the items as evidence, which included a pair of gloves and some yellow caution tape. 


23 Jun 2003 Las Vegas murder

A woman's torso was recovered from a fishing pond near Las Vegas on June 23. Perry Monroe was arrested for the Nevada murder. The dismemberment of the body and Monroe's residence near Berkeley caused many to suspect he may be a serial killer also responsible for the murders of Laci and Evelyn Hernandez.


25 or 29 Jun 2003 Greg Smith called the DA's office

Brocchini testified to a tip called in to the DA's office by Greg Smith, a realtor responsible for leasing the warehouse formerly used by Trade Corps.  The date on the top of the tip marked as evidence was June 29, but the date on the bottom was Wednesday, June 25.  Brocchini said he thought the tip was called in on June 29 (which was a Sunday).  Smith called Brazelton, whom he knew from the Lion's Club, and Brazelton passed the tip to Carla Tias, who passed it to Brocchini.   Smith called to report that Investigators from the Peterson family picked up a water bottle out of the seat of the forklift that was in the warehouse used by Trade Corps. Smith was upset that they took the bottle.  The two men did not have business cards, but were William Pavelic, Investigative Consultant, and Matt Dalton, an attorney with Geragos' law firm.  Brocchini interviewed Smith by telephone on August 13.


29 Jun 2003 ModBee poll

A poll conducted by the Modesto Bee demonstrated the slim chances Scott has of getting a fair trial in Modesto or anywhere in California. Other polls reported the same findings.


Sometime in Jun 2003 Evidence of Cult involvement

On September 14, 2003, the ModBee reported: "Sources close to the case say that in June, Peterson's defense team acquired a coat worn by a Modesto resident allegedly affiliated with an occult group. The man bragged about being involved in Laci Peterson's death, a source said. "The same article reported that the prosecution is "consulting with Randy Cerny, a local expert on ritualistic crimes," who may be called as a witness. 


9 Jul 2003 Evelyn Hernandez

A judge rejected a request from Scott's lawyers to force San Francisco police to open up their files about a pregnant woman, Evelyn Hernandez, whose killing had similarities to that of Laci. 


22 Jul 2003 Closed preliminary request 

Geragos filed the Defense position on cameras in the courtroom for the preliminary hearing, asking for a "closed" hearing. “The evidence, which demonstrates Mr. Peterson’s innocence, also provides evidence of the true killer or killers’ modus operandi and provides clues as to the method of and circumstances surrounding the killings.” 


23 Jul 2003 Amy asked to identify pants Laci was wearing on Dec. 23

After Laci's body was found, MPD obtained a pair of the same style pants she was wearing and also a picture of the pants.  Grogan met with Amy and showed three pictures of pants, including the one Laci was found in.  Amy pointed to two of the pictures and said, definitely not these.  One of the pictures she eliminated was the picture of the pants Laci was found in.  That interview was video-taped and portions of it played at the trial.  Amy said the pants Laci was found in were similar in color to the ones Laci was wearing on the 23rd, but Amy didn't remember the pants Laci wore on the 23rd having cuffs. 


29 Jul 2003 New Life Insurance law

Governor Grey Davis signed legislation, introduced as Assembly Bill 1083, which prohibits an insurer from issuing life insurance with a face value of $50,000 or more unless the spouse has been notified or has signed the application. Previously, California did not demand that a spouse be aware of a policy drawn on his or her life. "This bill would give married couples the assurance that no financial gains are hidden from spouses," Davis said.


29 Jul 2003 Modesto Bee online survey

Fifty-three percent of those responding to an unscientific survey at The Bee's Web site admitted having made up their minds about whether Scott is guilty of killing Laci and Conner. Of those, 96 percent said he is probably guilty or definitely guilty. The prejudgment rates don't vary much among different regions of the United States, noted a professor who wrote the survey. 


30 Jul 2003 Search warrants stay sealed

A three-judge panel of the 5th District Court of Appeal in Fresno ruled to keep the search warrants sealed, reversing Judge Beauchesne's ruling to unseal them. The 10-page ruling cited concern over a media frenzy, the right to a fair trial for both sides, and that disclosing the documents "might compromise the investigation and the search for the perpetrator."


1 Aug 2003 Wiretap law challenged

Scott's defense team filed court documents claiming that part of California's wiretap law violates the state constitution. Attorneys for television networks filed more than 900 pages of documents outlining opposition to keeping the press and public out of the preliminary hearing.  


5 Aug 2003 Efforts to suppress wiretap evidence

Scott's defense team filed a 20-page defense motion to prevent wiretap evidence from being presented at Peterson's trial. The motion revealed that police offered Scott a deal in January: if he told them where Laci's body was, they wouldn't seek the death penalty. Scott refused the offer. The motion claimed that the offer is evidence that the police processed this case as a capital murder case, which required certain procedures to be followed, and which were not followed.  


11 Aug 2003 Defense conducted autopsies

Defense team conducted its own autopsy and examination of the bodies of Laci and Conner. Judge Girolami approved guidelines for the defense on Friday, allowing only a single day, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dr. Henry Lee and Dr. Cyril Wecht performed the forensic examination, which included access to all x-rays and MRIs. The defense was allowed to take "a reasonable amount of tissue" and bodily fluids for study. 


12 Aug 2003 Satanic artwork

Defense team briefed Drs. Lee and Wecht on a satanic cult theory, including paintings and artwork near San Francisco Bay and an experiment showing that Laci's body could have been placed in the water at the art site. The site is located at The Bulb, which is the rounded end of a peninsula near Point Isabel. The defense position says Laci's murder is linked to Evelyn Hernandez and was performed by a satanic cult. About this time, reports circulated that Laci had a sonogram on December 23, which would prove very beneficial in helping determine when Conner died.  


13 Aug 2003 Brocchini interviewed Greg Smith

In the phone interview, Smith told Brocchini that he met with Scott in March '03 about subleasing the warehouse.  Scott had vacated the warehouse.  The Peterson family had hired some new lawyers and wanted to know if Smith could show the lawyers the warehouse.  Smith agreed and arranged to meet them on June 29.  Dalton and Pavelic were outside when Smith arrived, and had several photographs.  They wanted Smith to be in a photo, but he declined.  Smith opened the small office door, and there were about 20 faxes on the fax machine. Dalton and Pavelic wanted to take the faxes, but Smith wouldn't let them, saying the warehouse was Trade Corps not Scott's, so Dalton and Pavelic spread them out on the floor and took pictures of them, about 20 pages. After they went into the warehouse, Dalton told Smith, 'I don't see what I'm looking for, do you?' Smith replied that he didn't know what Dalton was looking for.  Dalton said, 'we're looking for debris of cement that was possibly used when making anchors.'  Smith said it was sounding like Dalton was referring to something that he read in a police report? Yes. Smith told Dalton that the warehouse was packed several months ago, but ever since then it's been empty so he was too late to see what was in the warehouse? Smith said as he and Dalton were near the back of the warehouse where the bathroom is, Pavelic began hollering at Dalton to hurry and come over? Yes. Smith said Pavelic held up something that Pavelic found on a forklift. Pavelic was holding up something that resembled a water bottle, however, he couldn't be sure? By the time Smith and Dalton got over to where Pavelic was, Pavelic had concealed the item so Smith couldn't see it? Smith said Pavelic seemed to think whatever he found was significant. Pavelic told Smith I am not asking you, I'm taking this. Smith told Dalton and Pavelic, if I were representing you, I wouldn't let anyone take anything out of the office while I was there without your permission, right? Smith said he couldn't be sure of what the item was Pavelic had taken from the warehouse, other than Smith remembering it looked something like a water bottle with a photograph?  Once they were outside, Smith pointed out a neighboring building or a neighboring warehouse, and advised Dalton and Pavelic that Peggy had allowed Laci to use the restroom on 12/23/02? Smith said Dalton and Pavelic drove out of the warehouse parking lot without contacting Peggy?


14 Aug 2003 Prelim hearing kept open

Judge Girolami heard arguments on how to proceed at the preliminary hearing and ruled that the hearing would be open, denying the defense request for a closed hearing. Girolami said he would take a few days to decide, however, whether cameras should be permitted. Girolami said he would hear arguments on possible violations of the gag order by both the prosecution and the defense after the preliminary hearing. He also responded to a prosecution motion to survey registered voters in Stanislaus and two other counties about how familiar they are with the case. The prosecution hopes to use the responses to fight any defense request for a change of venue. The judge said that before he makes a decision he wants to see a copy of the questionnaire. Finally, Girolami ordered that information from wiretaps on Scott Peterson remain sealed until a decision is made on whether to admit it as evidence. 


14 Aug 2003 Petersons subpoenaed

Lee and Jackie Peterson were served with subpoenas by the prosecution as possible witnesses at the preliminary hearing. Witnesses typically are not able to be in the courtroom when other evidence is presented.  Lee characterized the subpoenas as an attempt by prosecutors and police to prevent him and his wife from defending their son in comments to the media.  


17 Aug 2003 No intentional dismemberment

Reports on the findings of Drs. Lee and Wecht in their examination of Laci's and Conner's remains. They could not determine cause of death, she was more de-composed than they had thought due to her long presence in the Bay, and she was not dismembered before being put into the Bay but from her long exposure to the water. Lee and Wecht also interviewed some witnesses who say they saw Laci on the 24th, and who may be called as witnesses at the preliminary hearing.


18 Aug 2003 Live TV cameras banned at Preliminary Hearing

Judge Girolami released his August 15 ruling that television cameras will not be allowed during the preliminary hearing. A separate court document made public indicates that the remains of Laci and Conner will be released to family members no later than Friday after a defense specialist X-rays the fetus. The document also indicates that one prosecution witness, identified as "Kristen Deppenwolf" was questioned in a "cognitive interview where hypnosis techniques were used."


20 Aug 2003 Appeal to keep prelim closed

Scott's defense team went to the state's 5th District Court of Appeal in an effort to have Peterson's preliminary hearing closed to the public. 


20 Aug 2003 Defense x-rays Laci and Conner

A defense radiologist x-rayed both Laci and Conner, in an effort to prove that Conner lived past Christmas Eve. Sources reported that the x-rays of Conner would be compared against Laci's December 23 sonogram. However, on Sep. 4, sources reported that Dr. James Y. K. Yip, Laci's OB, denied giving Laci a sonogram on Dec. 23, and says she had only a routine prenatal visit. Laci's last sonogram was in September.  


21 Aug 2003 Remains released for burial

Laci's and Conner's remains were released to the Stanislaus County coroner's office, which is awaiting instructions from the Rochas for interment. 


21 Aug 2003 Kristen Dempewolf & Hypnosis

Information surfaced about the use of a "cognitive interview where hypnosis techniques were used" on Kristen Dempewolf, a La Loma woman who had her baby on January 10. Dempewolf, 33, had shoulder-length brown hair and regularly walked her mid-sized brown dog, which is not a golden retriever, a source said. The hypnosis came to light when prosecutors responded to a defense request for information about hypnotized prosecution witnesses. Investigators won't say why they used the hypnotist, but it could be to enhance her memory of what she was doing Christmas Eve morning.  If she was walking her dog that morning, it could counter other witnesses who say they saw Laci walking MacKenzie that morning.  However, neighbor Tammy Thomas believes it's unlikely a witness would mistake Kristen for Laci. "Kristen is a blonde, Laci was a brunette," she said. "Kristen's dog looks nothing like McKenzie. And Kristen always takes her 2-year-old daughter with her when she walks the dog." 


22 Aug 2003 Media appeal for open Preliminary Hearing

The Modesto Bee and a group of other newspapers filed documents with the 5th District Court of Appeals to deny the defense request that Girolami's ruling to have an open preliminary hearing be denied.


24 Aug 2003 Scott's confession to Amber

Fox News reported that during a taped phone call, Amber asked Scott whether he'd had anything to do with Laci's disappearance.   According to the sources, Scott responded: "Yes … uh … uh … but no.  But I know who did and I'll tell you later when I see you." Other sources had previously reported this taped conversation, but not with the "Yes" as part of it. 


28 Aug 2003 Gag order complaints dropped

In a joint motion, the prosecution and defense attorneys asked Judge Girolami to drop his inquiry into possible violations of his gag order issued in June. 


29 Aug 2003 Laci's and Conner's funeral

Laci and Conner Peterson were laid to rest in the Burwood Cemetery on River road, San Joaquin county, following a service at St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Modesto. The Peterson family was not invited to attend. Jackie Peterson had sent an email to Sharon asking her to postpone the funeral until Scott was exonerated. Adam Stewart, the Rochas attorney, responded, telling the Petersons to leave the Rochas alone.   


2 Sep 2003 Prelim postponed until Oct 20

At a hearing previously set to identify what evidences and witnesses would be presented at the preliminary hearing, Geragos asked Judge Girolami to postpone the preliminary hearing because of the "volume of discovery" the defense has received from the prosecution and because of a scheduling conflict he has with another case in its trial phase. Girolami set the new preliminary date for October 20. Geragos also indicated that he plans to challenge four specific evidences the prosecution plans to present at the preliminary hearing: cadaver and scent-tracking dogs, witness hypnosis, mitochondrial DNA, and GPS tracking devices. 

6 Sep 2003 24-hr protection for Amber

Ron Frey informed the Modesto Bee that Amber feared for her life. She is now being protected by private guards and lives in a gated community with round-the-clock protection by private security guards. In late September, a source confirmed that Amber's increased security was linked to Cory Carroll's account of neo-Nazi gang members who possibly were plotting with Scott to kidnap Laci.  However, Frey's move to the gated community seems to pre-date the earliest efforts by Carroll to report the alleged plot.  

10 Sep 2003 Scott's 7 affairs

KOVR-13 reported that Scott had 7 affairs during his 5-year marriage with Laci, the first in 1997 while Laci worked on Prunedale as a wine distributor and Scott was in San Luis Obispo, living with a roommate. Laci found out about this affair on a surprise visit. While she gave Scott the silent treatment during dinner with another couple that night, she did not tell anyone about it.

10 Sep 2003 Road map of Mexico

On The Record reported a map was found in Scott's car when he was arrested. The map was a road map of Southern California and Mexico. This map had directions on how to get from San Diego, and safely across the border to Mexico. It had directions to a remote area in Mexico where experts believe Scott was planning on hiding out & living at a camp site, after he fled the country. This new evidence could prove to be very damaging to the defense. Panel discussion was mixed in reactions to the significance of the map.

12 Sep 2003 Brocchini interviewed Kristin Reed

Brocchini testified that he interviewed Kristin Reed about the van she thought she saw across the street from 523 Covena the morning of Dec. 24.  Kristin told Brocchini that Laci told her she had stopped walking because of some fainting spells, but because she had gained so much weight in her pregnancy she was going to start walking again.  Brocchini asked if she was still going to the park, and Kristin she did not remember specifically, but Laci always took McKenzie with her as a safety feature.  Laci always kept McKenzie on the leash because she could not control him like Scott could.  When asked by Distaso, Brocchini said he did not believe Laci went walking on Dec 24 in the park and Kristin's information contradicted what he believed happened. Brocchini also said he asked Kristin if she had been talking to the defense, and she said she had talked to McAllister.


19 Sep 2003 Investigators returned to Bay

Modesto police and a dive team provided by Contra Costa Sheriff's department returned to the Richmond area of San Francisco Bay. 

20 Sep 2003 Cory Carroll revealed kidnapping plot

The Fresno Bee obtained a copy of the polygraph given to Cory Carroll regarding his accusation that Scott discussed a kidnapping scheme with Dirty and Skeeter, two members of a neo-Nazi gang. The polygraph asked specifically about the discussion of kidnapping, but not about any intent to murder Laci. Carroll said he was unaware of Laci's kidnapping and murder because he was jailed in December through July and was in a lockdown situation. He also says that he was approached twice after his release in July and told to "keep his mouth shut. "Carroll was jailed again in August. Over the next two weeks, Carroll revealed more details about the deal struck between Scott and the two neo-Nazis. According to Frank Muna, Carroll's attorney, Scott "offered Skeeter and Dirty $3,000 apiece to kidnap Laci and $8,000 apiece to get rid of her -- to kill her. "Muna suggested Scott failed to pay the money after he came under intense police scrutiny and Laci Peterson died while being held. The disgruntled kidnappers could have dumped the bodies where Peterson said he went fishing to implicate him, Muna said. As of October 3, Investigators have not contacted Diane Jackson to see if she recognized him or others as the men near the mysterious van parked directly across the street from the Covena home, a source close to the investigation said.

25 Sep 2003 Phone log becomes public knowledge

The ModBee published and analyzed a phone log for the 60-day period from December 14, 2002 to January 14, 2003. The article provides no explanation for the 14 calls from Amber to Scott on December 26. KTVU reported that investigators served search warrants on five cell phone companies trying to determine if Amber called Scott at his home in the days before Christmas Eve.

26 Sep 2003 Imposition of Constructive Trust

Sharon Rocha filed a lawsuit in Stanislaus County to prevent Scott, and any current or future agent, from profiting from Laci's and Conner's deaths. Any profits derived are to be put into a trust for the benefit of Laci's beneficiaries. Beyond its financial impact on Scott and the Petersons, the lawsuit could test whether a recently revised California law places unconstitutional limits on free speech by allowing victim's families to block perpetrators from profiting from their crimes. 

26 Sep 2003 Dalton left the defense team

The ModBee reported that Matthew Dalton left both the defense team and Geragos' LA law firm. Dalton is the one who raised a public fuss when the Rochas removed items from the Covena home. He also is the one who violated the gag order by discussing elements of the case with Drs. Lee and Wecht in the presence of a news reporter.  


29 Sep 2003 Bones found

Lori Krestian, Richmond CA, called the Modesto police to report she had found some bones near where Laci washed ashore "weeks ago." On October 2, the Contra County coroner's facility reported that the bones were from an animal.