Camm trial 9/17: Boney's ex-girlfriend testifies, prompts defense call for mistrial

Mala Singh Mattingly arriving at the Boone County, IN Courthouse on September 17.
Mala Singh Mattingly arriving at the Boone County, IN Courthouse on September 17.
David Camm arriving at the Boone County Courthouse on September 17.
David Camm arriving at the Boone County Courthouse on September 17.
Charles Boney
Charles Boney
Kim., Bradley and Jill Camm (Source: WAVE 3 Archives)
Kim., Bradley and Jill Camm (Source: WAVE 3 Archives)
The garage at the Camm home.
The garage at the Camm home.

LEBANON, IN (WAVE) - After more than a day's delay, four days by the calendar, jurors heard Charles Boney's ex-girlfriend claim that he was bleeding from a scraped knee, breathing heavily and hyperactive when he returned to his mother's home in New Albany  just past midnight September 29, 2000.

"He opened up a jersey and showed me a weapon," Mala Singh Mattingly testified Tuesday morning. "I told him to put the gun away - carry it out of the house. I was scared."

Mattingly said Boney complied, but claimed she had no clue why he was so upset until she joined him and his mother to watch the morning newscasts on television several hours later. The top story: the murders of the wife and two young children of former Indiana state trooper David Camm.

Defense objections prevented Mattingly from telling jurors what Boney and his mother said when the coverage prompted an argument. But Mattingly told them it was enough to prompt her to leave the room and end her summer romance. Mattingly also told the jury what happened when Boney reached her again in Louisville some two weeks later.

"I told him that this was one relationship that didn't need to happen," Mattingly testified.

Boney was charged with the Camm family murders more than 3 ½ years later. That was after David Camm had been convicted, had his conviction overturned, and was facing retrial.

The defense team now argues that Mattingly provides not only grounds for a mistrial for Camm's third trial, but for dismissal with prejudice such that Camm never be tried again.

"Her written statements are devastating to Charles Boney, and exculpatory (clearing) for David Camm," defense attorney Richard Kammen told Special Judge Jon Dartt before jurors arrived Tuesday morning .

The statement includes a reference that Boney showed Mattingly a photo of a woman he called "Kim," possibly Camm's wife. Kammen claims that prosecutors for Camm's second trial knew of those statements, but withheld them deliberately.

"Had we known of this, we would have done many things differently," said Kammen. "There's no way to fix it. The only normal way is to grant a mistrial."

Dartt said he would take Kammen's motion under advisement and offer to allow Camm's team to recall Boney to explain Mattingly's testimony.

Boney has been a key witness in Camm's third trial, claiming that he delivered an untraceable handgun to Camm's Georgetown home and was there to hear Camm shoot his wife, their son Bradley, 7, and daughter, Jill, 5.

During her testimony, Mattingly told jurors that Boney had told her "he was going to meet a buddy" when he left his mother's home about 6 p.m. on the evening of the murders. According to Mattingly, Boney was wearing cargo pants, a sweatshirt, and carrying a backpack. However, Mattingly never clarified, nor did defense attorneys or prosecutors ask, the shirt's color.

Boney became a suspect and Mattingly a person of interest when DNA testing linked them to a grey sweatshirt found underneath Bradley Camm's body.  Investigators found Mattingly's blood in three spots.

First, Mattingly told jurors she could have spilled it while testing her blood sugar; she's diabetic and insulin dependent. Later, she conceded that she had told detectives she might have worn the shirt during her menstrual cycle, or while Boney was performing a sex act. Boney has disputed both those latter explanations.

Camm's attorneys maintain that Mattingly has changed her stories repeatedly, from her first statements, through testimony in Boney's trial and Camm's second trial, to Camm's third trial. Mattingly had told jurors she'd never seen Boney handle a gun until his midnight return following the Camm murders.  However, Mattingly later revealed she'd told investigators that Boney had asked her to buy untraceable gun for him only hours before the crimes.

"I honestly don't know why," Mattingly answered, when a juror asked her to clarify what prompted Boney's request.

Mattingly was also unable to tell jurors whether her diabetes regimen included blood thinners and whether her condition was Type 1 or 2.

"I'm just insulin dependent," Mattingly said.

Boney has testified that Camm asked to buy two untraceable guns, and that he (Boney) had acquired both from a co-worker, Ernie Nugent. Tuesday, Nugent testified that he sold only one gun to Boney, two or three months after the Camm murders.

Indiana State Police Det. Darrell Gibson testified that he'd considered Camm a friend, and not a suspect, when Camm sat for his first interview in the hours following the killings. But two days later, Gibson said Camm made several statements that he considered "inappropriate" while providing samples to medical investigators tasked with determining whether Camm's wife had been sexually assaulted. Among such statements was an off-color joke while a female nurse was collecting samples of his pubic hair.

"He (Camm) later said 'this is what you get when you kill your wife and kids' and 'Kim is looking down from Heaven and shaking her head (because he has to do this),'" Gibson told the jury.

Gibson also testified Camm made a statement that could be considered threatening. However, Gibson said he didn't take it as one.

"He (Camm) pointed at me, and at another detective, and said 'It's on you' if this comes back to me," Gibson told the jury.

Nine days after his arrest, Camm asked Gibson to come to his cell for a man-to-man talk.

"I thought it was more to find out what we know," Gibson testified.

During that conversation, Gibson said Camm asked for a promise to keep the investigation open, offered a list of possible suspects, inquired about high velocity blood spatter, and suggested the timeline for his family's murders "had to be all wrong."

"He (Camm) said the blood (trail) from his wife was too long for them to be killed at 9:30," said Gibson.

That time frame presumed that Camm had killed his family after returning home from playing basketball at his church, moments before reporting the crime.

"He also asked how long it takes spatter to dry," Gibson testified. "When I told him twenty seconds or less, he (Camm) said he most have gotten home right after it happened."

The defense insists Camm was confused, having assumed that Gibson was referencing blood lingering in air rather than drying once it strikes a surface.

Prosecutors maintain that tiny blood dots on Camm's T-shirt and shoes prove he's the killer and standing so close to his wife and daughter while firing that some of their blood misted into his clothing.

Testimony regarding spatter prompted an early recess Tuesday afternoon. Jurors had heard from blood-pattern specialist and crime scene analyst Tom Bevel for about twenty minutes when Camm's team objected to a series of photographs. Jurors then spent almost an hour outside the courtroom while defense attorneys tried to exclude what they claim is a new theory that lacks supporting evidence.

"Mr. Bevel has seen blood where nobody has seen it," Kammen claimed. "It's all just 'my guess.' They don't do it scientifically; they just come in and spot all this stuff."

Bevel conceded that he'd not tested spots in the Camm's Ford Bronco to verify whether they were blood. Prosecutors insisted that Bevel need not identify whose blood it might be, only that a spot is consistent with it being blood. Camm's team argued that witnesses presented as experts bear a higher burden of proof.

Dartt called time after a photo-by-photo review stretched past 3:30 p.m.

"I promised you I wouldn't waste your time," Dartt told jurors as they filed back into court. "We still have some things to go through."

Dartt will review case law before Bevel's testimony resumes Wednesday morning. Prosecutors also have asked him to determine whether they can compel Camm to reveal whether he has a cross tattoo on one of his shoulders. Last week, Jeremy Bullock testified that Camm had made a jailhouse confession to killing his family after commissioning the indelible artwork.

"We'd like them to see Boney's and Bullock's tattoos too," Kammen said. "There's a lot more they need to hear, from Mr. Boney."

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