By James Zambroski
January 26th - Day 14
Boney All the Way at Camm Trial
David Camm's defense lawyers suffered a setback Thursday when they tried using a new argument on an old issue.
Without Charles Boney in the courtroom to be cross examined -- and that seems increasingly unlikely -- Warrick Superior Court Judge Robert Aylsworth has ruled in the past that neither statements Boney made to police nor other evidence that ultimately came out in his Floyd County trial, will be heard by the jury judging David Ray Camm.
But on Thursday, defense lawyers Katherine "Kitty" Liell and Stacey Uliana sought to have Boney's criminal past involving felony attacks on women, principally those whose feet were the targets and statements Boney made to police about his fixation with women's feet, legs and shoes, as well as a statement the defense believes could be interpreted as a confession, be heard by the Camm jury during cross examination of Indiana State Police Detective Gary Gilbert.
Gilbert, who is assigned to ISP's Evansville Post, was appointed new lead investigator after Detective Sean Clemons was replaced almost two years ago. He is a thin, quiet, gum chewing cop who favors nicely tailored suits and cowboy boots sometimes made from exotic leathers. He is expected to take the stand beginning Friday.
Gilbert was the investigator who first found Boney's DNA in a national police database. The sample was taken from a sweatshirt tucked near the edge of Bradley Camm's body. Boney also revealed his penchant for women's feet to Gilbert and the detective was also present when Boney acknowledged he was at the family's Georgetown, Ind. garage and likely responsible for the murders of Kim, Jill and Bradley Camm
That admission came during a Boney interview conducted by Gary Dunn, the rumpled and mustachioed retired FBI agent employed as the defense investigator.
With the jury dismissed for the day, the defense argued that Boney's self-proclaimed proclivities provide a motive for the crime and are an alternate theory that could clear their client.
That argument was heard and dismissed by Aylsworth during pre-trial hearings in the months prior to Camm's current trial. But Liell and Uliana now say Floyd County Prosecutor Keith Henderson and several of the state's first witnesses opened a new door from the first day of the trial, and the defense, therefore, should be allowed to respond.
Liell said that Henderson's opening statement remark that the killings were not part of a sex crime is misleading. Other questions asked by Chief Deputy Prosecutor Steve Owen about whether burglary was behind the slayings brought motive to the forefront, the defense asserted in their renewed argument to Aylsworth on Thursday.
The defense believes injuries to Kim Camm's feet -- possibly caused by stomping -- as well as her shoes being placed on top of her Ford Bronco were motivated by Boney's sex crazed foot fetish.
The defense alleges -- and no state witness has disagreed -- that Kimberly Camm was too short to place her shoes on the roof, at least while standing on the garage floor.
But after listening to about 15 minutes of arguments for and against the motion, Aylsworth denied it from the bench.
In another development that unfolded while Owen spoke to reporters during a lunch break, it appears possible that the state has evidence of a conspiracy between Boney and Camm that was not introduced during Boney's trial in Floyd County. Carefully speaking to a hypothetical, Owen answered "yes" when asked if such a scenario was plausible. Pressed to elaborate, he declined, possibly as a nod to Aylsworth's gag order which prevents lawyers from discussing evidence that has not yet been presented to the jury.
Indiana trial rules require the prosecution to give the defense evidence it intends to present at trial in advance. The practice is called discovery and is designed to give the accused a chance to adequately prepare a response.
Defense lawyers say they are unaware of any new conspiracy evidence, despite Boney's conviction on a conspiracy count on Wednesday. They note that any unexpected surprises, especially if they are already known by the prosecution, is unethical and likely to bring sanctions from Aylsworth and possibly the Indiana Bar Association.
But a member of Camm's family says if that evidence is brought forward, it's likely to come from the mouth of a jailhouse informant.
"I'll bet you $100 it's from a jailhouse snitch," he said.
"P.S. Since I'm out of the office for the next several weeks, I can't access my WAVE 3 email account. If you wanna reach me while I'm in Boonville, send email to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Later.