Drew Peterson trial – day thirteen. Judge rules “hit man” can testify. Head trauma expert on stand.

UPDATE 05:13:

Defense is objecting to a photo shown during Dr. Case’s testimony. Judge overrules.
Jury is called back but attorneys approach bench for a sidebar.
Glasgow begins redirect.
Glasgow trying to dispel notion Case only lectures to law enforcement.
The witness agrees that she and Dr. Jan Leetsma “have disagreements” about head trauma in children. But in this case, you both agree the cause of head trauma was a blunt object with a concentrated edge? “That’s correct.”
Prosecutor Glasgow now talking about rough sex and types of injuries one may sustain during it.
Attorney Goldberg begins re-cross.
She again states that the abrasions on Savio’s buttocks were ante-mortem. Then asked about Savio falling down the stairs in 1999. Objection – sustained.
Court is adjourned for the day.
Judge says he’s going to start holding court on Mondays now.

UPDATE 04:30:

Goldberg now quotes from Dr. Spitz’s book which says that an injury to the head, involving only the skin, could cause unconsciousness. Dr. Case says she does not agree.
Dr. Case: “I don’t know if that’s rough sex; that probably happens every day” Goldberg: Maybe in your house, not mine.
“I see lots of people who bump into tables. They bump into things all the time. They do not have those kind of bruises on their body, those deep bruises We all bump into things. That is not a common experience, for someone to walk around with bruises like that.” You have no idea whatsoever where that bruise came from, or where it came from? “In my opinion, it’s an inflicted injury.” Do you know with 100 % certainty, with your crystal ball? Objection – sustained.
Talk of sectioning of brain and spine.
We’ve moved on from brain dissection without much of a question. Goldberg asking Dr. Case about bruising of Savio’s diaphragm.
One pathologist didn’t find bruising on diaphragm. Case: they didn’t examine it the way Dr. Baden and I did.
No further questions for Dr. Case from defense.
The jurors are excused from the courtroom. Judge: “We’ll take a five-minute break.” He then leaves the bench.

UPDATE 04:05:

Atty Goldberg questions Dr. Case about “fat blaster” pills. Case says there’s really nothing herbal that will increase your metabolism.
Defense trying to get Dr. Case to testify about the fat blaster pills, raised metabolism and heart palpitations.
Goldberg: thickening of Savio’s heart valve was not noted in any of her medical records. Case: “That is only seen in an autopsy”
Goldberg now asking Case if she knows anything about Savio’s boyfriend’s claims of rough sex and easy bruising. She doesn’t.
Case testifies again that she believes the scrape on Kathleen’s buttocks was not made by the tub and was not created post-mortem.
Goldberg asking Case about Vasodilation: what happens to your body when you get into a hot bath.
Case: “Extremely unlikely” that Savio passed out due to Vasodilation.
Case: people with artery disease could pass out in a hot tub, Savio did not have cardiovascular disease.
Case: Also, you would wake up as soon as you fell, like a faint.

UPDATE 03:30:

Defense Attorney Darryl Goldberg begins cross-examination of Dr. Case.
Defense questioning Case about her relationship with law enforcement. She testifies a lot, frequently for prosecutors, she says.
Case is incorporated for tax purposes, she says. Defense arguing that she wouldn’t continue to get work if she didn’t produce “results”
Defense questioning Case and her expertise in child abuse cases.
You’ve never lectured to the National Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys, have you? “I’ve never been asked. I would be happy to do so.”
Because of your cozy relationship with prosecutors? Objection/Sustained.
The witness explains the single time she was not allowed to testify in a case. You were prepared to testify as to a cause of death without performing an autopsy? “Yes.”
Defense asking Case about other forensic pathologists who’ve come to different conclusions about manner of Savio’s death.
Case acknowledges respected pathologists she knows and/or has worked w/ disagree that Savio death was homicide. She specifically mentions doctors Jentzen, DiMaio and Leetsma.
Goldberg quotes from a neuropathology book by Dr. Leetsma, which disputes her theory of the horizontal laceration on Savio’s head. Case says she doesn’t disagree with anything he just read.

UPDATE 03:10:

Atty Goldberg saying Case is testifying to things that weren’t disclosed, asking for her entire testimony to be stricken.
Defense argues that state was trying to have witness rebut defense, rather than make state’s case.
Burmila denies defense motion to strike Case’s testimony.
Witness had stated that Savio would have to fall three times and land three different ways to get those injuries. Judge instructs jury to ignore that remark.
Case: “My opinion is that it is a homicide. It is not a suicide or an accident.”
The judge calls a recess at this time, to allow the defense to prepare for its cross-examination of Dr. Case. He leaves the bench.

UPDATE 02:45:

Glasgow continues direct examination of Dr. Case.
Case now talking about the cervical vertigo we heard about on Friday. Savio had no evidence of seizure or other neurological disorder.
What is cervical vertigo? Case: “The sensation of things spinning around you. The neck muscles are in spasm, and it disoriented the head.”
Is there any danger with that condition? Case: “There is no danger. It’s painful.” “There was no evidence she had a seizure disorder or any kind of neurological disorder.”
Case begins to describe bruising inside Savio’s chest that is not visible on the exterior. Motor vehicle accidents produce injuries similar to the bruises on Savio’s chest – objection. sidebar.
Case using laser pointer to show jury where Savio had bruising. They’re looking at photos of inside Savio’s chest.
Now looking at photograph of abrasion to Savio’s buttock. “Something rough has touched that area, or that area has touched something rough.” The tub surface couldn’t have caused abrasion on Savio’s buttocks.
Jury leaving courtroom again after defense objects to Dr. Case saying that there was no place on tub to cause Savio’s head injury.

UPDATE 02:20:

Case says blood pattern in tub — ie no blood on the tub walls — does not suggest she hit her head, fell into water.
Case: Savio’s head injury wasn’t caused by a knife. It was caused by a blunt object with a concentrated edge.
The witness says that she wouldn’t expect the amount of force from just a fall in the tub to have caused a loss of consciousness. “A laceration is made by a blunt object. This is a blunt object.” ‘Did you see any such edge in the tub area, in the pictures that you saw?” “I did not.”
Objections as the witness testifies about the kind of surface could cause the injury, the lack of blood spatter and again when discussing what happens in the body when drowning occurs. Question about medication and another objection, sidebar, and jury is sent from the room. Recess.

UPDATE 01:30:

Court is back in session.
Greenberg is arguing against Dr. Case giving any sort of opinion on Dr. Mitchell’s conclusions.
Dr. Case is back on the stand.
Case now detailing 2007 autopsy report from Dr. Blum.
Case: Blum took samples of bruising from Savio’s hip.
Case now talking about third autopsy done by Dr. Michael Baden.
Case: When a bruise is first made, it’s either purple or blue. Microscopic review of sample from lower left quadrant (the three deep bruises) showed it was blue — a fresh injury.
Case: “This is a large amount of force, going all the way down to the hip bone. It’s not just a minor little injury. It is significant…there are three separate forms of contact.”
Savio’s heart was healthy.
Case now using laser pointer to describe to jurors what she sees in photo of hemorrhage, laceration on Savio’s scalp.
Case describing what could cause that injury: “There was enough force to tear the tissue … it did not damage the bone.”
After whatever force struck her head, tearing the skin, what happened to that force? Case: “The force was dissipated…it entered into the galea, but not all the way through. So the force was dissipated.”
Case: Savio had no damage inside her head, no injury to brain. Hemorrhaging was on surface of skull, scalp.

UPDATE 11:42:

Dr. Case is asked about manner of death when there is an objection.
Prosecution asks for a sidebar and the jury is excused.
Goldberg is objecting, argues that the prosecution is asking the witness to speculate about what a specific portion of Dr. Mitchell’s autopsy protocol may mean. (He is referencing the part where Mitchell says the head injury may have been due to a fall.)
Judge says that the witness can mention it, but isn’t free to venture an opinion on what Mitchell may have meant when he wrote the statement.
Witness back on the stand. She is asked about the five manners of death. Case: “We have natural, accident, suicide, homicide, and unexplained.”
Prosecution: Were any of those mentioned in Dr. Bryan Mitchell’s autopsy protocol? Case: “no.”
Objection. Overruled.
Court in recess until 1:15 p.m. CDT.

UPDATE 11:17:

Judge back in court. Jury back in court.
Judge has copy of Wilson VS Clark. Dr. Case can rely on reports of other individuals.
Judge tells the jury to disregard the names Case mentioned in drawing her conclusion.
Dr. Case shown photo. She IDs it as Savio in the bathtub. She’s describing post-mortem changes, blood in tub.
In another photo, Case describes that the items around the tub aren’t knocked over.
Case says she examined Dr. Mitchell’s report and would classify it as normal.
Savio’s brain weighed 1,140 grams. Aside from edema (swelling), Case says Savio’s brain was “normal.”
Case says she saw in Dr. Mitchell’s protocol some “mild thickening” in one of the valves of Savio’s heart. She says that is not uncommon for a woman of Savio’s age. Savio died of drowning.

Dr. Mary Case

UPDATE 10:26:

On the stand: Dr. Mary Case. She’s a head trauma expert.
Case says she’s done about 11,000 autopsies during her professional career.
Case: “I’ve been doing brain cuttings since 1975. I’ve looked at thousands and thousands of brains.”
Case said she reviewed 3 autopsy records related to Savio’s death, as well as depositions & opinion letters from several doctors involved.
Sidebar and jury and witness are excused from room.
While listing the research she did for this trial, Case names some doctors who will not be called to testify. Burmila: “What are we going to do about that?”
Judge leaves the bench while prosecution looks for case-law.

UPDATE 09:51:

Jury still not in. Now attorneys discussing if Savio photos (head trauma, chest cavity) will be seen by jury.
One exhibit will be allowed and another is not.
Discussion of a video. Judge and defense say they have not seen it in its entirely, but prosecution says it was sent to all parties.
Judge: “As far as the video in general the problem I have with it is it looks like a movie and I’m afraid it might confuse the jurors that it’s an actual movie produced as a result of this autopsy”. Video is not allowed.

UPDATE 09:18:

Court is in session.
Attorneys are arguing about the admission of Jeffrey Pachter’s testimony. Pachter has testified before that he was offered $25k by Drew Peterson, to hire someone to kill Savio.
Defense argues that hit man testimony is too prejudicial.
Prosecutor: It is certainly relevant that just a few months before (her death) Drew Peterson is asking someone to “take care of” his wife.
Judge: “The issue is, did the defendant intend to kill his wife and this testimony goes to that issue. So the jury will be able to consider that and this evidence will be admissible.”
Judge Burmila allows hitman testimony. Jury about to be brought in.

UPDATE 09:09:

This morning’s color choice for the jurors: Green

Drew Peterson’s trial for the murder of Kathleen Savio continues today. On Friday Dr. Gene Neri, Kathleen Savio’s doctor from 1999-2002 testified about a stress-related condition called “cervical vertigo” that Savio suffered from at that time. He testified that he treated it with the anti-depressant Zoloft and the sleep-aid, Lorazepam, but he didn’t know anything about her health or mental state after 2002. He testified that cervical vertigo might make one feel unsteady but not to actually fall.

Stacy Peterson’s friend and flirt-mate, Scott Rossetto was called to the stand. He had testified at the Grand Jury and at a pre-trial hearing that Stacy told him her secret: On the night that Kathleen Savio died, she saw Drew return to their home and load women’s clothing into the washing machine. He told her that if anyone asked about his whereabouts, he was home with her. Rossetto was on the stand only briefly before the objections began to fly and he was eventually barred as a witness due to a conflict about the dates involved with the testimony and inconsistent stories. He was released and free to return to Germany where he is currently serving with the U.S. Army.

Joseph Steadmanm, an insurance claim adjuster, then testified about Drew Peterson telling him that Savio’s death was possibly due to a drug overdose. Then Jennifer Schoon, one-time girlfriend of Peterson’s son, Steven, testified as to what she saw and heard the night Kathleen died. She and Steven were living in the basement of Peterson’s house at that time.

As always, I’ll have my eyes and ears open and will be posting updates. Check back throughout the day for the latest news and don’t forget to check the comments thread.

We’re following:
Jon Seidel
Stacy St. Clair
In Session
Glenn Marshall
Diane Pathieu
Kara Oko
Dan Rozek
Diane Pathieu

~By commenting you agree to be bound by the rules of this blog. You can contact admins directly by sending an email to petersonstory@gmail.com.~


81 thoughts on “Drew Peterson trial – day thirteen. Judge rules “hit man” can testify. Head trauma expert on stand.

  1. I want to thank you guys for providing this website and for your enlightening comments. I’ve read that this website in on the must read list for the defense attorneys. Do you think that your comments might be helping them?

  2. This trial is doing my head in. This judge is a lunatic. I’m going to come right out and say it – I think he is shady. He must be, what with these crazy decisions he is making.

    There was an artists impression a few days back, sometime last week – I couldn’t comment because comments were closed by the time I got to it.

    In the artists impression, Burmilla is looking at one of the prosecution witnesses ( it might have even been Dr Blum, I’m not sure), and the look on his face was absolutely fierce. It looked like pure hatred to me, and I have to wonder why the hell he would have such strong feelings toward Dr Blum (or whoever it was).

    If the prosecution feels the judge is being unfairly biased and jeopardising justice being served, is there anything they can do? Any steps they can take to have him removed? Surely a level-headed judge with common sense could look at some of this guys decisions and agree that he is not ruling fairly!

    As I said, it’s doing my head in.

  3. Hey everyone. Good trial day morning!

    Carol, thanks for the complement. I realize that the defense team peruses the blog. As to your question, if seasoned defense attorneys need the musings of laypeople to effectively defend their client, they are welcome (and probably not very good attorneys).

    Aussie, I took down Cornell’s sketches because I was asked to. I think you can still see them on the In Session Facebook page.

    Honey, I’m hearing that 4 a.m. is a good time to arrive. Arriving at 6 might get you an alternate ticket, but you could still get in. I think it’s been varying from day to day, though.

  4. Prosecutor Koch has brought up rule 404(b) in regards to the hit man testimony:

    Rule 404(b): The bar to evidence of other crimes, wrongs, or acts to prove character to show conformity is made subject to the provisions of 725 ILCS 5/115–7.3, dealing with enumerated sex-related offenses, along with 725 ILCS 5/115–7.4 and 725 ILCS 5/115–20, dealing with domestic violence and other enumerated offenses, all of which allow admissibility of other crimes, wrongs, or acts under certain circumstances.


  5. Dr. Mary Case’s faculty page at St. Louis University:

    Clinical/Research Interests:
    Child abuse and abusive head injuries; adult head trauma

    Forensic Pathology

    1974 American Board of Pathology, Anatomic Pathology
    1975 American Board of Pathology, Neuropathology
    1983 American Board of Pathology, Forensic Pathology

    MO State Med Association
    St. Louis Med Society

    Departmental Affiliations
    Anatomic, Neuropathology, and Forensic Pathology


  6. Hi Everyone!

    Glad to see the hit man will be allowed! 😀

    So glad we have this forum to discuss. I was checking out the In Session FB updates. 😯
    I can’t deal with all of the insane arguing and bickering. It makes it difficult to see the actual Updates!

  7. “What are the five manners of death?” “We have natural, accident, suicide, homicide, and unexplained.” “Were any of those mentioned in Dr. Bryan Mitchell’s autopsy protocol?” Objection/Overruled. “No.” The defense asks for a sidebar.

    Why is the prosecution even asking that question? At the time of Savio’s death “unexplained” was not an option.

  8. Facs, even more reason why I appreciate and thank you for all you do (saving the updates). In Session FB updates are a mess!


    I don’t think ANYONE in that courtroom has any respect for the jury. Such a shame.

  9. Stacy St. Clair‏@StacyStClair

    #drewpeterson jury was in the courtroom for a total of 42 minutes this morning.

    😯 This is crazy!

  10. I’d love to add some comment about today’s proceedings but with so little time on the stand, our first witness has yet to do anything but establish her credentials and testify that she’s reviewed the autopsy reports.

    I’m really glad to see that Jeff Pachter will get to testify. When I tweeted about it last week, Jo Lopez replied ” that is the guy involved in the insurance scam” so we can look forward to the defense doing whatever they can to discredit him (not sure what an insurance scam would have to do with the proposed hit but…)

  11. Regarding Jeff Ruby’s ads, I’m going to bite my tongue for now, but I’ve been following his Twitter correspondence with the defense team and I’ll just say that a true hero doesn’t normally have something to advertise.

  12. “UPDATE 09:09:
    This morning’s color choice for the jurors: Green”

    Lets hope they are saving BLACK for the day they announce their verdict!

  13. (not sure what an insurance scam would have to do with the proposed hit but…)

    Yeah, it’s kind of like… speaking of underwear, I need new sunglasses. :mrgreen:

  14. I just saw our friend, Val, on In Session. I’m not surprised to see that she’s keeping order among the line of courtroom observers every morning. Way to go, Val!

    She said that Peterson mouthed “Hi, Blondie” at someone in the gallery last week. She reiterated that observers are warned not to make eye contact with him, but somehow he doesn’t seem to be getting the same admonition.

    She thinks he’s looking for wife #5.

  15. I checked in with Drew Peterson’s son, Stephen, last week to get an update on Peterson’s family.

    Stacy Peterson’s children, Anthony and Lacy, start school this week. Lacy will be in second grade; Anthony starts fourth grade, but they won’t be at the same school. Lacy is enrolled in a gifted program at a different school from Anthony.

    Stephen says Anthony and Lacy know that their father is on trial. Stephen has explained to his youngest siblings that their father is accused of doing something bad, but that others say he did not do it. He has assured the children that the accusation against their father does not involve their mother.

    He told them their father is accused of hurting their half-brothers’ (Tom and Kris’) mother, Kathleen Savio.

    Stephen says the children each ask different kinds of questions about their father. He says Anthony smirks and tries to think of something funny to say, while Lacy is more serious with her inquiries about their father.

    Stephen says Drew Peterson calls his youngest children at least twice a week from jail.


  16. Facs, who is the attorney on the Prosecution side that is questioning Dr. Case? Also, who is doing the objecting on the Defense side? It’s a little confusing to read.


  17. Thanks, Facs. Just one more reason why the trial should be televised — at least to the courtroom and overflow room.

  18. Absolutely. This is the craziest case I’ve ever seen!

    I think cameras would go a LONG way towards making everyone behave. (In Atlanta only one camera is allowed. It’s called something like a “pool camera” and all media are allowed access to it and freely use it in their evening broadcasts. If nothing else, it allows more clear interpretation of witness testimony in case of a question.)

  19. “Witness had stated that Savio would have to fall three times and land three different ways to get those injuries. Judge instructs jury to ignore that remark.” Ok, I’m physically, psychologically, and literally throwing my arms and hands into the air at this point. What a bunch of bullshit coming from the bench!!! Maybe DP tried to hire Burmilla to off both Kathleen and Stacey! As God as my witness, if I’m ever offed in Illinois, please don’t let this judge preside over my case! ^-^

  20. Granny – they are testing that same set-up in some Illinois district courts at present, but not Will County yet. I’m not sure why they are so hesitant – it’s not like it’s new technology. Most states already do it!

    dmitri, LOL!

  21. Facs, I don’t mean to throw stones — Atlanta is not without its problems — but Chicago poliltics have been notorious for decades. I would not be surprised if the PTB prefer to have things less transparent.

  22. It’s not like reporters aren’t allowed. Trials get full coverage. Reporters just just have to cover it old school. I agree, that’s ridiculous in this day and age.

  23. The problem becomes one of “telephone.” It’s been amazing to see the tweets and how there is often a difference in how a statement is reported. With a recorded testimony that doesn’t happen.

  24. “When you told the jurors that the head injury would not produce loss of consciousness when she fell, you’re making an assumption that she was conscious to start with?” “Correct.”

    Ummm?? HUH? As opposed to what? Falling while unconscious? What is the defense trying to say here? Did they just make a big oops? The head would happened after she was already unconscious?

    No need to answer… just typing out loud! 🙂

  25. I thought he same thing, Harley. She just passed out while standing upright? Then keeled over, violently striking her head on something (but without disturbing anything tubside) then gently settled into her tubwater with no displacement whatsoever?

    Plus, She decided to take a bath right after she poured herself a glass of orange juice and heated water for tea, but was so EAGER for that bath that she couldn’t wait to drink either one.

  26. “You have no idea whatsoever where that bruise came from, or where it came from?” “In my opinion, it’s an inflicted injury.” “Do you know with 100 % certainty, with your crystal ball?” Objection/Sustained.

    I see Mr. Goldberg has again left his professionalism at home!

    Go figure Facs! So eager for that bath that she didn’t even bring a robe or towel in with her either! 🙄

  27. I just finished reading all the updates for today and I think today was a great day for the prosecution. Dr. Case was a strong prosecution witness! She certainly didn’t let the defense intimidate her on cross.

  28. 🙂 LA. You were just brave enough to say what I was thinking!

    Facs, I think I would rather hear that he doesn’t have sex from behind, instead of he does have sex from behind! 😉 Either way … TMI! LOL

  29. Agreed, Molly. And for Goldberg to get snide and insulting with the witness he must have been feeling a little impotent with his questions. The jury isn’t stupid.

    I think it looks bad that he brought up brain and spine sectioning and then didn’t have any questions about them. Jury must have been shaking their heads.

  30. I got so involved reading about Dr. Case’s testimony that I forgot to mention the hitman!

    Wow……………..I’m excited about this. With the hitman testimony being allowed, I’m now hoping that Pastor Neil Schori’s testimony will also be allowed. The testimony from the hitman AND from Pastor Neil Schori will be major victories for the prosecution. They can be enough to sway the jury.

    I worry about Pastor Neil Schori’s testimony because it IS hearsay and it comes from Stacy, who the prosecution is not allowed to mention. I wonder how they’re going to get around that issue? If there’s any jury member who doesn’t know Stacy is missing, they’re going to wonder why Stacy herself isn’t testifying about this.

    Of course, I don’t think there’s anyone on that jury who doesn’t know about Stacy’s disappearance. But Pastor Neil Schori’s testimony will emphasize the fact that Stacy isn’t here to testify. I bet the defense will battle tooth and nail to bar Schori’s testimony.

  31. “When you told the jurors that the head injury would not produce loss of consciousness when she fell, you’re making an assumption that she was conscious to start
    with?” “Correct.”

    Apparently, you can still be very active when you’re unconscious or dead – just ask the defense (!)

  32. I am in front of computers all day long, most of the time, working of course, but all I have to do is swivel my chair to my 3 personal ones

  33. Poor Facs! I’m sure you’re exhausted by the end of the day…..and to think this thing keeps going and going and going…

    At this pace, the jury won’t be getting their instructions until Thanksgiving week!

    I wish the judge would just put his foot down with all the nonsense. One witness a day is getting really ridiculous — especially when that witness is simply an outside expert.

  34. From todays proceedings, it sounds to me like the Def is getting a bit desperate….this trial is moving along at snails pace, but I do believe the state is plugging along. JMO of course

  35. Oh Good! They need to have court on Mondays!

    I’ll volunteer to do updates if you need help Facs. I can’t do this week…. But can help out next week. You mean the In Session updates right?

  36. I seen on CBS news while watching Dinner, Glasgow and one of the Defense attorneys arguing outside the courthouse. They said it was heated. I caught the tail end of it, so not sure who was having words with Glasgow.

  37. Hmmm…I wish I could share MollyMcGee’s enthusiasm that today was a good day for the prosecution. Having read the updates on this blog, my headline from the day’s testimony was:

    “Case acknowledges respected pathologists she knows and/or has worked w/ disagree that Savio death was homicide. She specifically mentions doctors Jentzen, DiMaio and Leetsma”

    This is the second time this trio of naysaying doctors has been mentioned …see Dr Larry Blum testimony on Aug 16th.

    Dr, Case, (like Dr Blum before her) was painted in easy to understand language as a lacky of the Prosecutors office.

    Likewise I expect the defense will have a field day when Fox TV’s Michael Baden admits being paid by the TV network for his opinion.

    Its becoming increasingly clear where the defense is going…and i’m not sure how the Prosecution is going to be able to overcome it.

    Three “pro” DA pathologists claim it was murder.
    Three pathologists bought and paid for by the defense will take the stand and disagree.

    Throw the original autopsy into the pile and the defense can even argue that they have the tie-breaker.

    I know its not right ..but when respected technical experts disagree about whether or not a crime was actually committed… how can a lay jury reach the conclusion there is no reasonable doubt.?

    This is enough to make me sleepless in Seattle.

  38. I’ve never read the In Session summaries because I thought they were on Facebook and I don’t have an account.

    Facs, that is very time consuming — and thanks! I didn’t realize someone was actually taking verbatim testimony.

    Question: At the part where Dr. Case is talking about the deep bruise at the diapraghm (sp?), she goes on to say that there is no bruising in the tissues around that area. Right? If so, how could that be? That part was really confusing as she describes that kind of injury as severe — like something you’d get in an auto accident. How could there be no trauma to the surrounding muscles or tissue?

  39. Oxymoran, I wouldn’t worry so much about the defense experts.

    1. Dr. Mitchell did not determine a manner of death. He determined that the cause of her death was drowning and everyone agrees with that. Even the states’s experts have agreed with at least 95% with his autopsy findings.

    2. The defense must have been napping when deputy coroner Van Over introduced that Mitchell later said he thought the coroner’s manner of death should have been “undetermined” rather than “accidental”. The jury heard it and it wasn’t objected to.

    3. Mitchell said the head injury she suffered “could have” been caused by a fall. He never determined that it was or even opined it. Mitchell was not a head injury expert…but Dr. Case is and she said that it could not have happened in a fall in that bathtub.

    4. Have you heard that Baden is going to be called to testify? He hasn’t yet. Let’s say he does. If you are on the jury do you automatically conclude that he’s lying just because he was paid by Fox? The defense experts were all paid as well…every one of them. And the jury will hear that as well. Don’t you think the prosecutors are going to question their motives, just as the defense has done to the State’s witnesses?

    Granny, I wondered about that as well. I don’t know how it is bruising can show up in tissues and not on the skin above them.

  40. @ Fac…responding to your points:

    Point 3…”could have”…does NOT meet the burden of proof

    Point 4. I have no special knowledge about whether or not Baden is going to testify.

    You also ask in point 4 …Would a jury member automatically conclude he’s “lying” just because he was paid by Fox? …absolutely not. And i agree that all three defense attorneys will also be paid.

    My concern is that according to the update, the prosecution witness acknowledged that the defense witnesses are “RESPECTED pathologists SHE KNOWS.”

    As a lay juror, surely I would have preferred her to give me a way of determining that her testimony is superior. Ideally she would have been able to say…”never heard of them” to the so-called defense experts thus undermining their status as real players in their field…..(or you even better “you mean those losers who were recently exposed as quacks”)

    Instead we have 3 pathologists bought and paid by each side, but all six appear to be “respected.”

    How is a layman to be certain beyond a reasonable doubt, when three pathologists disagree, and when all 3 are acknowledged by the prosecution expert as RESPECTED in her field disagree?

    And therein lies the source of my insomnia in the Pacific Northwest.

  41. As much as I love what Dr. Case testified to, today, it does nothing to put Drewpy in that bathroom. I’m all for convicting him right now, but I know the jury has to have proof, dang it.
    But you did what you could, Dr. Case, and I loved it.

  42. That’s my concern too, Cheryl. Even if the jury comes to believe that Kathleen was murdered, they are going to have to hear the hearsay testimony and find it credible in order to build that circumstantial case that will make them believe that Drew Peterson killed her.

    But every witness has their job to do. To me this trial is so much about telling a story with a lot of story tellers, and together it has to end up having meaning.

  43. It’s just a damn shame that Stacy is nowhere to be found because she’s the one person who could really tell the jury what she saw and heard that night.

    Oh, that’s right. She disappeared…about a week after she started telling people.

  44. @ Fac..seeing as I’ve already become the party pooper let me get my final concern on the table.

    After 13 days of testimony, not only do i not know for sure if there has been a murder…but also I don’t know how the murderer committed the crime. I wish Dr Case had been able to tell the jury how Peterson killed Savio. Where’s the murder weapon? In her expert opinion could the head wound have been caused by the inside edge of the toilet seat? What about a police night stick?

    On top of that as both you and Cheryl observed today “did nothing to place Drewpy in that bathroom”

    Against all that negativity…lets not lose sight of the fact common sense prevailed and the Judge has finally ruled that the jury will be exposed to the hitman testimony…which gives me some hope.

  45. Well, you and I both know that Dr. Case would have been shut up pretty fast if she had speculated about what caused that head wound.

    Totally understand feeling not so great about how it’s going, but if you want to be the negatron tonight, I’ll play positron and say again that each witness has their bit to add, and the whole effort is going to be cumulative.

    if Neil Schori is able to speak for Stacy he’ll put Drew in that bathroom, or at least let the jury connect the dots. Rossetto would have been able to reinforce that but no point thinking about what can’t happen now (being as I’m a positron).

    And if we have a really smart jury, they might even be thinking about the fact that Schori is delivering hearsay testimony, and what could possibly be the reason that Judge Burmila is allowing that in?

    P.S. I hear that the jurors once again, did not take notes during the cross-examination.

  46. oh, c’mon…there has been plenty of testimony that will leave the jury with no other option than to see Drew as the culprit. This is a circumstantial case, so everything has to build up on the other testimony.

    Dr. Case made some very good points today. She concurred with earlier testimony about the freshness of wounds; she talked about the lack of a sharp edge in the tub which would cause the head wound; she pointed out the deep injury in the diapraghm. Her testimony seemed convincing.

    One would expect that any rebuttal experts that the Defense brings forward would directly contradict the Prosecution’s witnesses. Anyone on a jury would expect that, too. I actually think it makes her look more professional when she refuses to trash the other witnesses, as the jury only hears the Defense team trash the opposition.

    The Prosecution has been able to show that Drew had broken into Kathy’s house and threatened her; that he told a police buddy that Kathy would be better off dead; that Kathy told several other people that Drew would kill her — even going so far as to tell her sister where she kept a briefcase of important papers hidden. The day that Kathy’s body was found he set up a scenario that comes across as very scripted to just about everyone who was involved. He was seen scrubbing the tub the day after Kathy was found. There’s lots of things which point directly to Drew having been the only one who could have committed this heinous crime. (And there are still more witnesses to testify.)

    All is not lost, Oxy.

  47. It’s not Dr. Case’s job to place Drew in that bathroom, it is her job to explain injuries, which is what she did and she did that very well too – what she said made a lot of sense.

    Let’s see if the Defense can make that much sense with their experts ……..

  48. Thanks, Granny, for the reminder. It’s easy to forget just how much this jury has heard. It’s a lot!

    And thank you Jeannie! It’s good to see you. I know you’ve been here from the beginning. 🙂

  49. I hear you AtlGranny…and appreciate your effort to talk me down from the ledge…I just wish Dr Case hadn’t been so generous in her praise of her colleagues…

    “You are aware that Dr. Jeffrey Jentzen is a forensic pathologist?” “I do know Dr. Jentzen; he’s a very good friend of mine.”
    “And you’re aware that he’s come to a different conclusion than you have?”
    “Yes.” “
    You certainly don’t quarrel with his qualifications?”
    “Not at all.Dr. Jentzen is a very fine forensic pathologist.”

    She says that Dr. Vincent Demaio is also a fine pathologist, although she notes that she and Demaio have had many disagreements over the years…..

    Source: InSession notes

    Oh well …tomorrow will be my turn to be Mr Positive.

  50. If it makes you feel any better Oxy, I’ve never heard an expert witness say anything nasty about a colleague.

    I’m thinking of the Michael Jackson trial where we had the expert testimony of probably the only two Propofol experts in the world. they absolutely did not agree on its properties, administration, or its testing as a sleep aid in the Jackson case, but they are good friends who eat dinner at each other’s homes and they never said a nasty word about the other – just that they disagreed.

    Even the attorneys will say nice things about the other side. Just today Joel Brodsky made sure to tell the cameras how much he respects the State prosecutor’s office.

    I agree with Granny, that it bolsters their credibility to be respectful.

  51. I just want to say how much I enjoy chatting with everyone after the day’s proceedings are done and we’ve all had some time to relax and think about what happened during the day. I appreciate everyone who takes the time to venture their opinion and discuss. Thank you!

  52. Oxymoran……….my excitement is partially based on the accumulation of witness testimony so far.

    The jury has heard from a number of witnesses about Drew Peterson’s threats, his breaking into the house, how Kathleen feared he would kill her, how one fellow nursing student saw red marks on Kathleen’s neck where he had physically attacked her, that Kathleen told friends that Drew had threatened that she wouldn’t live to see the settlement hearing, etc.

    The jury has had medical examiners testify to the extent of Kathleen’s injuries, with far too many bruises than what would be expected in a slip and fall in the bathtub.

    There’s no explanation for the wound on the back of Kathleen’s head as no one has been able to show an object in or around that bathtub that could have caused that wound.

    I feel that Dr. Case did a great job today in her testimony. When she stated that Kathleen would have to fall three times and land on a different side each time to sustain all the bruising she had, I think was a real blow to the defense. I hope the jury has that mental picture in their heads.

    The other part of my excitement comes from the fact that the hitman testimony is going to be heard. This will show that Drew wanted Kathleen dead and was willing to pay someone a good sum of money to do it.

    And, the prospect of Pastor Neil Schori testifying. His testimony is going to destroy Drew’s alibi for the night Kathleen died, and the suspicious circumstances of him coming home in the wee hours of the morning and stuffing woman’s clothing in the washing machine and telling Stacy that she was to tell anyone who asked, that he was at home in bed sleeping that night.

    Despite Judge Burmila’s terrible attitude and him not allowing important testimony, I think the end result is going to be enough evidence for the jury to come back with a conviction. The testimony from the hitman and Neil Schori may be the testimony that will sway the jury towards a conviction.

  53. @ Molly…Excellent summary …I feel better already! And the prospect of compelling testimony from hitman and the Pastor is more than enough to cure my insomnia and bring me back to the Justice Cafe tomorrow.

    Starting to feel sleepy in Seattle

  54. I hope you have a good night’s sleep and dream good dreams. 🙂 We’re in the same time zone as I’m located in southern California.

  55. And good night from Texas, everyone. Your points are all valid and I’m like Oxy….I’ll climb off my ledge, too, and try to get some sleep. Gotta ‘rest’ for tomorrow. And I can’t wait for the defense’s side, either, Granny. Can you just imagine? LOL
    The state’s burden of proof may yet make an inroad!
    Facs, if there’s anything I can do to help you, I’m here, I’m available (most days) and I’d be honored to repay your vigilance and diligence! You may e or call me at any time!

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