HER WORDS CAN BE USED AGAINST HER IN A COURT OF LAW
By William Thomas Jensen
Today was a watershed day for the defense in the Frank Carson trial. Prosecution witness Beverly Woody was put back on the stand for another day of testimony. Beverly continues to change her testimony. Our unofficial count puts her at nine different versions of what she has said about the death of Korey Kauffman. The defense attorneys seem to think that her testimony is becoming a changing point in this trial. Judge Zuniga seems to us to be more and more aware of the inconsistencies of her testimony. It would surprise me if the judge gives any weight at all to her testimony. I must commend the Modesto Bee reporter for sitting in on most of today’s testimony. There is nothing like writing a story you actually witnessed in person. Now sit back, and I will try to paint another picture of the never-ending testimony of Beverly Woody.
Defense attorney Robert Forkner continues his cross-examination today by asking Beverly about when her son Robert Woody left her home with his girlfriend Robin. He asked her if they were gone for around one hour, and returned around 9 PM in the evening. Beverly said “yeah, I guess.” Robert used a report to refresh her memory, and she said yes. Forkner asks Beverly if Robin told her that squad cars were at the Carson property. Beverly says no. Forkner asks whether Robert told Beverly of squad cars at the property. Beverly said yes. Forkner asked if another cop was there. She said yes. He asked Beverly if the cop left with Carson for Modesto to create an alibi. Beverly says yes. Beverly says somebody was in there with Carson. She was pretty sure it was his lawyer who was there for an alibi.
Beverly testified that Robert Woody was scared of the officer that told him to get back on the property and help clean up. She testified that the officer that was in the car that didn’t go with Carson told Robert Woody to clean up the mess.
Talk then goes to whether Beverly ever visited her son at the downtown jail. She says no. Beverly stated that she visited her son at the public safety center. Forkner asks Beverly whether that is where her son confessed to her for the third time. Beverly says yes. Beverly stated that her son is still in there. We know that is not true.
Forkner asks Beverly if she has ever been to prison before. She says no. Forkner asks Beverly if she has ever been convicted of felonies. Beverly says yes. Forkner asks Beverly whether it was concerning stolen property. Beverly states: “I’m not the one on trial.” Beverly asked the judge do I have to answer this question. The judge says she has to answer this question. Beverly says: “I don’t remember.” Forkner asked Beverly about a conviction she has for forging checks in 1994. Beverly admits that she had done this. Forkner asks Beverly about a petty theft conviction in 1993. Beverly admits that she had done that. Forkner brings out that in 1981 she had two counts of forging checks.
We are now treated to three taped interviews with Beverly Woody that were done by Kirk Bunch on February 26, 2014. The audio recording was unintelligible at first. After a few adjustments in equipment, it was somewhat easier to understand the audio recording.
Kirk Bunch is heard asking Beverly about who is related to who in her family. He tells her this is a very complicated case. He tells her Robert has confessed to the killing of Korey Kauffman. Beverly: “Robert ain’t no killer.” Kirk Bunch tells Beverly that: “we know he is not the only one involved.” Bunch tells Beverly that Robert knows very specific details that only the killer would know. He tells Beverly that: “We found the body, we haven’t arrested him yet because we know other people are involved.” Bunch tells Beverly that he sent Robert Woody a text message telling him that it would be in his best interest to turn himself in. He tells Beverly that it would help Robert’s cause if he voluntarily comes in. Bunch tells Beverly Woody that a defense attorney is involved. Bunch says that people are leading Robert Woody down the wrong path. He tells Beverly that Frank Carson is involved, “We know that.” Bunch tells Beverly that Robert will get some consideration if he cooperates. He tells Beverly there are different levels of murder. Bunch tells Beverly that Korey Kauffman was trapped. He tells Beverly there was premeditation, and this qualifies for special circumstances, referring to the death penalty. He tells Beverly that Robert is getting bad advice. Beverly says to Bunch that she will talk to Robert.
Bunch tells Beverly: “We can work something out for Robert. He has to be very productive with full disclosure.” Bunch tells Beverly: this is a huge case. Bunch tells Beverly Woody that Robert said: “I’m the one that killed him.” “I put him in the mountains.” Beverly then tells Bunch that Bobby Athwall jumped on Korey Kauffman, and was beating him. Beverly says Robert jumped in, and pulled Bobby off of Korey Kauffman. Bunch tells Beverly Woody that Korey Kauffman was killed on Frank Carson’s property, and that Robert Woody got all wrapped up in this. Bunch tells Beverly that at some point you are going to have to help us. Bunch tells Beverly he might want to keep Robert Woody just as a witness, and not a defendant. Bunch says he would rather keep Robert Woody as a witness than make him a defendant.
Beverly Woody tells Bunch that the lawyer needed help to scare people off of his property. Bunch tells Beverly to not tell other people what we have talked about today.
We now play a shorter tape of an interview between Kirk Bunch and Beverly Woody. Bunch is accompanied by Detective Jon Evers during this interview. He receives a phone call and can be heard saying that he will be leaving in two minutes. Beverly tells Bunch that she told Robert: “to get in there, and talk to them.” Bunch says he would like to talk to Robert tonight. He says: “We are not going to arrest him tonight.” Detective Jon Evers asks Beverly if Robert is local now. Beverly says he is in Keyes. Evers tells Beverly for her to have Robert call him by 9 PM tonight.
At 11:41 AM, we start listening to a third tape between Beverly Woody and Kirk Bunch. Kirk asks Beverly if there have been any threats. Beverly talks about a car that made a rolling stop on East Avenue. She said the driver flashed a thumbs down, and made a gesture like he was shooting a gun. This happened on August 14, 2014, right after Robert Woody was arrested. Her sister Marsha was outside, along with another Robert Woody, Michael Woody, Robert Branco, and Dorothy Hibdon. She described the vehicle as being a white pickup from Pop N Cork. She said it was a newer model, and was kind of lowered. Beverly described a heavyset, blonde haired Caucasian. It is now time for lunch.
At 1:38 PM, we continue listening to tape number three. Beverly describes how their house has been bombarded by rocks that have been thrown. She states they don’t hear a car when this happens. She says that ever since Robert Woody was arrested, rocks fly all the time. Bunch is heard talking to Mary Woody. Mary tells Bunch: “That pipe was not mine.” Mary Woody then tells Bunch: “it was my hash.”
Bunch tells Beverly Woody that the defendants are going to be asking for bail on Tuesday, and that he will use this evidence of threats to make sure that they stay in jail. Beverly states that three-quarter of an inch to 1-inch river rock has hit their house, and broken windows.
Mary Woody tells Bunch how Daljit Atwall pulled a gun on her husband on a weekend. She said Daljit put pills in his beer, and that he had found them. Mary Woody said Daljit slapped her husband on the back, and left a handprint. Mary says everybody sees Daljit with a loaded gun. Mary Woody’s husband is Robert Woody Senior. Mary said Daljit called her husband “Pussy.” Mary Woody said Daljit told her husband that the gun was not loaded. She said her husband got free beer, and free soda from Pop N Cork. She said her husband sometimes passed out at Pop N Cork. Mary Woody said her husband found pills in his beer four to five times, and spit them out on the floor.
Bunch tells Beverly Woody that Robert was on the Frank Carson property, and at the grave of Korey Kauffman in Mariposa. He tells Beverly Woody that Robert is now cooperating. Beverly tells Bunch that Korey Kauffman got beaten by Bobby Athwall, and that Daljit shot him in the back. She says that Robert was threatened to keep his mouth shut. Beverly Woody is heard saying the killing of Korey Kauffman “Might have happened in Modesto.” This certainly did not fit Kirk Bunch’s theory, so he told Beverly: “We know where it happened, and it happened on Frank Carson’s property in Turlock.”
Beverly Woody tells Kirk Bunch that Robert Woody tried to kill himself in Washington state. She said Bobby was out of control, and that Robert pulled Bobby off of Korey Kauffman. She said that Robin told her that a trap was set for Korey Kauffman. She said that a pipe was put in plain view on the Carson property. She said she didn’t know who laid the trap. Beverly said Robert did dope, and so did his dad.
Beverly Woody said that Daljit Atwall gave Robert Woody steroid shots in the hip. She said the shots made him crazy. She said that at one time the cops threatened to shoot Robert in the head. Beverly said that Robin told her Bobby’s truck was burned, and that Robert Woody burned it to hide the evidence. Gas was put inside and outside of the truck, and that they burned it. She said that Korey Kauffman was buried at Pop N Cork for around 6 months before being dug up and moved. This conflicts with the 28 days that the prosecution contends. Beverly Woody says Daljit Atwall bought Robert Woody a gym membership.
Beverly Woody told Bunch that Robert Woody had to do dig up the body of Korey Kauffman at Pop N Cork and take him up to the mountains where the body was tossed out. Beverly said a cop had told her that a set of boots, a jacket, and a shell casing from a 22 were found at the scene. She said there was a hole in Korey Kauffman’s back.
Talk goes to a hand saw that was seen at Pop N Cork, and how it was bought at Home Depot. Daljit had allegedly given people money to purchase this saw. Bunch is heard on the tape asking for a picture of it to be drawn. The saw was described as having gnarly teeth.
Beverly Woody asks Bunch if they cut Korey Kauffman’s fingers and toes off. Bunch tells her the fingers and toes were cut off. Beverly speaks of rumors that say his legs, arms, and head were cut off as well.
It is 2:35 PM, and we are back from our break. We continue to listen to tape number three. Bunch tells Beverly: “I wish Robert had come forward a long time ago.” Talk goes to the Athwalls giving $60 a week to put on Robert’s book at the jail, and another $25 a week for phone calls. Beverly says that Daljit Atwall figured Robert Woody was talking too much, and stopped paying that money.
Talk on the recording then goes into how the law enforcement guys would go into the back room at Pop N Cork where the Athwalls would have girls and provide expensive liquor. Beverly said Robert built that back room, and that there were no building permits for that room.
Beverly tells Bunch that Frank Carson told Robert Woody to be quiet, and I will get you off. Beverly then asks Kirk Bunch: “Did I help my son?” Kirk Bunch says:” You told us the truth didn’t you?” Kirk Bunch tells Beverly: “You are going to hear some very unpleasant things.” “Fingers and toes being cut off.”
We are now done with tape number three. Defense attorney Robert Forkner goes back on cross-examination of Beverly Woody. Forkner asks Beverly if she remembers telling Steve Jacobson about pipes on the Carson property. Beverly says yes. Forkner asks Beverly if there was a lot of talk on the street about arms, legs, etc. Beverly said yes. Forkner asks Beverly Woody if the bike was left on the Carson property. Beverly tells Forkner that it could have been left there. Forkner:” Heard lots of different stories?” Beverly: “Yes.” Beverly then states that her son told her what happened, and that she believes him. Beverly said that Robert told her that Frank Carson took off with the gun. Forkner asks Beverly if it is true that the first time you told about Frank Carson taking off with the gun was two days ago in court. Beverly said: “Yes.”
It is now 4 PM, and Beverly Woody is allowed to step down from the stand, and taken out of the court room. Defense attorney Robert Forkner requests several more video and audio recordings. Prosecuting DA Marlissa Fereirra seems very flustered by this request, and insists that they have been provided to the defense. Judge Zuniga seems very irritated with Marlissa at this time, and asks her for the Bates stamp number four these tapes. It seems as though Marlissa has been caught in further misconduct. We will find out more about this very soon. Court will resume tomorrow morning at 9:30 AM.
Sincerely; William Thomas Jensen (Tom)