GETTING CLOSE TO THE END
FRANK CARSON ET AL CASE
BY WILLIAM THOMAS JENSEN (TOM)
Today, we continued the Preliminary Hearing for CHP Officers Scott McFarlane and Eduardo Quintanar. Court started late today because Prosecuting DA Marlisa Ferreira had to attend a victim impact statement in Department 6 at 9:00AM. We were able to start the Preliminary Hearing at 9:57AM.
We started out with Lieutenant Kevin Domby of the CHP Internal Affairs Department in Sacramento on the stand. DA Investigator Kirk Bunch called Domby in December 2014 concerning the three CHP Officers involved in this case. During the initial questioning, Judge Zuniga repeatedly helped Marlisa Ferreira craft her questions. This has been seen throughout the last year and a half of this never ending Preliminary Hearing.
Scott McFarlane’s attorney Alonzo Gradford seemed to get nowhere in his questioning of Lieutenant Domby. Domby kept citing 832.7 of the Penal Code, which prevents him from disclosing anything that is contained in the personnel records of his client. Domby did say that Eduardo Quintanar should be expected to cooperate with the investigators in this case, but he also said that it was Eduardo Quintanar’s right to invoke his 5th Amendment Rights against self- incrimination. After our break at 11:00AM, we went directly to the testimony of self- proclaimed cell phone expert Jim Cook. I thought we were going to hear the rest of the cell phone intercepts first.
Jim Cook takes the stand at 11:18AM, and begins his testimony on a 96-page PowerPoint presentation of cell phone data analysis. He listed the locations of interest, which included the Terry Locke residence, the Robert Woody residence, Pop N Cork Liquors, the Michael Cooley residence, the Carson property, the Kauffman residence, the Carson residence in Modesto, Frank Carson’s Law Office, the Courthouse at 800 11th St. in Modesto, Baljit Athwal’s residence, and Daljit Athwal’s residence.
Jim Cook testifies that Eduardo Quintanar made 961 calls to Daljit Atwal between 1/11/2015 to 02/26/2015. He also made 906 texts to Daljit Atwal during this time period. Quintanar made 242 calls, and 134 texts to Walter Wells during this time period. He made 369 calls to Pop N Cork Liquors during this time period. He called Scott McFarlane 158 times, and sent Scott 131 text messages during this time period. Eduardo Quintinar called Baljit Athwal 53 times, with a total of 234 calls and text messages during this time period. He made two calls to Robert Woody during this time period.
Scott McFarlane called his CHP partner Thomas O’Keefe 111 times, and sent him 2791 texts during this time period. Scott McFarlane called Walter Wells 70 times, and sent him 198 text messages. Scott McFarlane made 133 calls to Daljit Atwal, and 125 text messages during this time period. Scott McFarlane called Eduardo Quintanar 88 times, and sent him 105 text messages. Scott McFarlane called Baljit Athwal nine times, and sent him 66 text messages. Scott McFarlane called Pop N Cork Liquors 19 times. He called Robert Woody once, and sent Robert Woody 5 text messages. Scott McFarlane called another phone associated with Daljit Atwal twice, but did not send this phone any text messages. Thomas O’Keefe called Scott McFarlane 74 times, and texted Scott 3011 times during this time period.
Thomas O’Keefe made 39 calls to Daljit Atwal, and sent Daljit 364 text messages. O’Keefe called Walter Wells 19 times, and sent him 307 times. O’Keefe called Baljit Athwal 11 times, and sent him 113 text messages. O’Keefe called Eduardo Quintanar three times, and sent him 39 text messages. O’Keefe called Pop N Cork twice.
The Homicide Analysis between 03/30/2012 to 03/31/2012 was covered by a stipulation.
We now went into a very lengthy slide by slide presentation of all the cell phone calls and text messages that included which cell phone towers they connected to, and who was calling who. It was supreme boredom at this time.
Scott McFarlane’s attorney Larry Niemeyer takes over asking questions, and gets Cook to admit that many of the cell phone numbers called by Scott were not to anyone associated with this case, and that times where Cook said McFarlane’s phone was moving were associated with him driving home from work. Cook had tried to show some significance to a two month period where there was no communication between Scott McFarlane and his partner Thomas O’Keefe. Larry Niemeyer asks Cook if he was aware that O’Keefe was serving in the California National Guard during that time period. Marlisa Ferreira seemed shocked, and immediately made an objection, but Judge Zuniga overruled her objection. The prosecution had made a slide that graphed out this two-month gap. There goes their theory of “Consciousness of Guilt.” Judge Zuniga just yesterday told Marlisa that her theories are “Overbroad.” This is just one example of this situation. She does it over and over again. I noticed that Marlisa and Kirk were both turning red, and shaking one foot during this episode.
Eduardo Quintanar’s attorney Alonzo Gradford took over asking Cook questions. This was a pure joy to watch. Alonzo brings up slide after slide in Cook’s presentation. These slides represented very significant dates and times in this case. On every one of these slides, Alonzo gets Cook to admit that there were NO calls between any of the defendants in Frank Carson ET AL. Alonzo went over every possible combination of defendants, and none of them called anybody associated with this case. Gradford asked Cook for cell phone data that he could not provide. Time after time Cook said he did not bring those cell phone records with him to court. Alonzo remained calm. I would have been going bonkers. This was very powerful, and once again Jim Cook has been destroyed on the stand.
DA Investigator Steve Jacobson goes back on the stand. I was wondering if we were going to hear the six more telephone intercepts that were left, or if the judge had decided to forgo the agony of irrelevance. He starts playing a couple of more telephone calls. The first one was from Eduardo Quentanar to CHP Officer Frost on 03/20/2015. He tells Frost how Bunch had communicated with his wife Heather through her school E-Mail system. He says this has to stop. Frost tells Quentanar that he can’t give him any advice. His voice sounded cold to me. Not to be trusted for any help.
The next call was from Eduardo Quintanar to Mark his Union Representative. Quintanar can be heard telling Mark how Frost would not help him, or give him any advice. Eduardo Quintanar determines that he will have to find out if he is a witness or a suspect in this case. He is going to meet with someone on this issue, and his Union Representative wants him to bring a recorder for his own protection. We are now done for the day. Court resumes in Department 2 at 9:00AM tomorrow. We are getting closer to the end of this Preliminary Hearing. It still seems like a very thin case against the CHP Officers. Hoping for some sanity in the decision by Judge Zuniga.
Sincerely; William Thomas Jensen (Tom)