Good evening everybody. This is Marty from DAWG’s blog with tonight’s podcast on the Frank Carson et al. Trial. Today is Tuesday, June 25, 2019. This is the second day of court this week. We did have an unusual Monday session yesterday in the afternoon. This afternoon went like this morning, but Marlisa Ferreira did get done. She was restricted to an hour in her rebuttal and she wasn’t too happy, but did stay within the hour.
As a note before we start, I got a phone call today of a very interesting, maybe symbolic gesture, about the infamous, one and only, Mike Cooley. There was a Mike Cooley sighting today. Mike Cooley was driving down the middle of the road carrying, I kid you not, an aluminum irrigation pipe. Mike Cooley had an aluminum irrigation pipe struggling to go down Miller Road. It wasn’t just a pipe, it had a valve on the end of the pipe. I’m sure someone just discarded it. I felt it was symbolic as we wrap up the case today.
Marlisa Ferreira is done, we got into arguments this afternoon and many issues came up. She did finish and we will move forward tomorrow with jury instructions and the jury can begin deliberations.
The jury was up at 1:32PM and the Judge was on the bench at 1:33PM. It has been good lately. Judge Zuniga did admonish the jury in regards to the text and slide information that Marlisa Ferreira had put up in the morning. It was not allowed, it was not appropriate and they are to disregard. After all that arguing this morning. That was the end result.
Marlisa Ferreira continued on the rebuttal. They gave her one hour only. I got down what I could, but she was moving at a breakneck pace on the information. She talked about the 3/31/2012 text with Baljit Athwal. At 1:03 AM from his wife, somehow, they are trying to make some significance of that. Daljit Athwal, 3/31/2012, she said 12:22 PM (that would be in the afternoon). On 8/15/15 Jim Cook had read the texts with Daljit Athwal and Sandy Villalobos. There was one other time in 2012, a text, between the two. Baljit Athwal, Jim Cook testified in August 2018, there were texts that no other time was there a gap that large, on 3/31/12 and 3/30/12. She’s making a big deal of this, but Jim Cook didn’t really have the time to go through and so Marlisa Ferreira went through and did this stuff, which brought some comments from the gallery. She said those gaps in responding to the texts, they were rare events for both. Jim Cook testified that the data connections for Daljit Athwal were unreliable because the way data connections work. Again, if you are in Modesto and make a data connection, (you go on Facebook) and then you drive to Fresno and then if you make another connection, it still shows you in Modesto. Until you manipulate your phone with another app, it won’t show that you are in Fresno. She says the connects are always on and it shows the same all over, wherever it was initialized, until you do a manual refresh. Marlisa Ferreira said the defense is claiming the refreshes are not reliable because Jim Cook doesn’t map refreshes. The original tower maintains it, until there is another manipulation. She said data connections are reliable.
Marlisa Ferreira talked about Kirk Bunch’s notes on the Kevin Pickett interview, around 4/4/12, because he didn’t write a report or keep his notes. She talked about 5/6/19, Kevin Pickett testimony, where he said he talked to Kirk Bunch. So Kirk Bunch did not lie. That was a second interview. She talked about Officer Briggs from Turlock PD, she was accused of attacking him. She said no. He said he made contact with Frank Carson that day (at Lander and Montana). Frank Carson said he was watching his property, but, she said, he could only see the Mike Cooley house. Officer Briggs went to the corner of Montana and Lander that morning prior to his testimony to confirm to himself what you could see from there. She said that could lead to more discoverable issues. There were some objections throughout here. She said he was never attacked and did nothing wrong. She said what he did was appropriate. That isn’t what she said at the time, she even chastised him for chewing gum in court.
Marlisa Ferreira talked about Michael Maunakea and the defense saying his story was absurd. Marlisa Ferreira didn’t bring the Turlock PD issues up, she only asked about Korey Kauffman at the house on 9/10/11 and Korey Kauffman statements that date. She said Michael Maunakea’s testimony is undisputed. She had no problems with the officers on the stand who testified for the defense. She also mentioned that Linda Maunakea testified to the same thing.
Talked about the Michael Maunakea seizure in the back of the patrol car and they did a sternal rub on him and he got combative because he didn’t know what the officer was doing. She said Michael Maunakea has a bias against law enforcement officers, but that doesn’t mean he is lying. She said the Michael Maunakea attack claims of the Turlock PD, were brought up by the defense. Marlisa Ferreira admitted to making a mistake of the blurry cell phone picture that was shown to Michael Maunakea and he thought it was the recorder and started crying. She told the jury you cannot hold that mistake against Korey Kauffman, that was her mistake. You can’t hold it against the prosecution and damage her case by that.
She said Daljit Athwal had made comments that Korey Kauffman was not listening, so he had contact with Korey Kauffman.
She talked about all the witnesses, like Michael Maunakea, Romero, Mike Cooley, were all reliable testimony. Victor Navar had informed on several people and the Athwals trusted Victor Navar because they were in the same boat he was in, facing a homicide charge. She said Robert Woody broke down and finally gave in, but she said that is not true. She talked about the Hodsons, John and Ali, the defense is claiming they were not reliable and were treated badly, worse than anyone on this case.
As a note, this morning I was sitting outside the courtroom waiting for it to open and Tom was there with me. John Hodson felt the need to come up and take my picture. He said, “Smile, Gentlemen”. I have no idea what his intention is, but he is upset about his picture on Tom’s report last Saturday. He was the one demanding his picture be removed and he still hasn’t given me a reason. I don’t know what he intends to do with the picture, but he had every right to take it. We were in a public place. I’ll take the publicity. Thank you, sir.
Marlisa Ferreira said the Hodsons were trying to get back at Frank Carson for them getting fired. They did obviously blame Carson for being fired, because they were talking to law enforcement.
And I note, John Hodson has been at court the last few days and he is very friendly with the investigators. He puts his arm around them and pats them on the back. They are laughing and joking. Whatever that means.
Marlisa Ferreira said in his opening statement, Jai Gohel said the DA’s Office wrote a check that they cannot cash, because Robert Woody was coerced. She said the defense did not keep many promises. She said the very people the defense want you to believe are their people (meaning the Athwals). I don’t know what she meant by that.
You heard from and antique dealer that he had signs that were stolen. Frank Carson called the cops and they were confiscated because they were stolen property.
She said the defense had argued that Robert Woody had nothing to do with the disappearance of Korey Kauffman. She said the problem with that is Robert Woody plead out to a manslaughter charge. Robert Woody had made statements to family that he felt ashamed and disgusted for what he did. She asked, did Kirk Bunch threaten Robert Woody with the death penalty in some of the interviews? He also talked about special circumstances that lead to the death penalty. She said: read the transcripts, Kirk Bunch never said that. (Actually he did, I heard him in some of the interviews). The body was buried by the store prior to Robert Woody’s arrest. Kirk Bunch, she said, always said they wanted the truth, talking to Robert Woody. Robert Woody minimized his conduct or was innocent? The defense made both arguments. He was an aider and abettor to a crime. She said the defense claimed that Woodrow Woody, Jr. was just trying to help Dad to get a deal.
Jim Cook did an independent analysis to get accurate information.
Marlisa Ferreira talked about Patrick Emery. She said the defense is saying he’s a high level guy in the military. Patrick Emery wore his uniform, and that did not set well with Marlisa Ferreira that he wore his uniform, it was unrelated to the military event. She said he was trying to impress the jury and it is a misuse of uniform.
She talked about the information in regards to Robert Woody and that Walter Wells mentioned something about Robert Woody being suspected in the disappearance of Korey Kauffman. The tow company said on 4/9/12 that the cars were towed, it was not August. So Patrick Emery changed the dates and it was an untrue date in regards to Walter Wells Sr. when he had passed and they had his funeral. Patrick Emery admitted to being so drunk, he was sick the next day. So his timing could be off because he was so drunk.
Korey Kauffman was with Kevin Pickett on March 29, 2012 and then in Turlock and was not in Mariposa like Sharee Hendrix said.
She talked about Mr. Borba who lived next to 838 9th St. He had not seen or heard anything, but his bedroom window faced the lot. But he was an older guy who needed help around the house, so he may not have heard anything.
She said Kathy Grinolds heard the shot and the room lit up with objections. The jury was out at 2:14PM. So they were in the room about 43 minutes. This got animated. Finally the Judge looked at the testimony of Kathy Grinolds and Kathy Grinolds said she heard shots, but was not sure which day she heard those shots. Marlisa Ferreira was disagreeing with her and she wants a citation in the transcripts of what she is talking about. Judge Zuniga went into chambers to research the transcripts. Apparently there were some real problems with the transcripts. Somebody (the defense) was looking at transcripts that weren’t certified, that is what it sounded like and the prosecution was looking at the certified transcripts. So one says one thing and one says another and I can’t imagine why they would be different, but they are. One the official transcript it does say she heard gunshots near that time, but it doesn’t say that particular day. Hans Hjertonsson said yes, it says she heard them around this time. Marlisa Ferreira said the same thing. They were actually agreeing, but arguing about it. The Judge is going to allow Marlisa Ferreira to read the transcript to clarify everything. Hans Hjertonsson mentioned that Marlisa Ferreira only had 19 left to do her rebuttal and that set Marlisa Ferreira off again. The Judge did give her a time limit. She said she had until 2:55PM to finish. Marlisa Ferreira was definitely arguing with the Judge, she wants to object for the record and she is not happy. The Judge said we need to get this jury out and deliberating. We are running out of time.
The jury was up at 2:42 PM. Marlisa Ferreira was reading the transcript to the jury of Kathy Grinolds. She said she heard the shots and she said she did see Daljit and Baljit Athwal on the platform above the garage on that particular date. But she didn’t remember at the time, she remembered when she saw their pictures in the media and she had been at Pop and Cork and then it dawned on her that it was “the guys”.
Marlisa Ferreira showed a picture of Frank Carson with a box of bullets in his house.
She talked about Baljit Athwal is a man who hunts. Korey Kauffman was found where people hunt.
Scott McFarlane put a garden in. She showed three different pictures of google maps of the discoloration of the Pop and Cork lot where Scott McFarlane put the garden in and that was also the gravesite.
The pathologist, she said, he said there would not be any odors emanating because of the body being wrapped in a tarp. (Not exactly what I heard, but OK).
Out of the 130 witnesses, the defense says they are all lying, but they don’t each other and they told the same story.
She talked about 3/29/12 Korey Kauffman’s cell phone was hitting sites and sectors in Turlock. That proves he was in Turlock and it shows in the CDR’s. She put up a slide with the cell phone tower and it ended up into a messy situation again. There was an objection to that slide and the jury was out at 2:50PM.
They went to a sidebar, very animated. The Judge is not happy. Marlisa Ferreira was very unhappy, kind of in a snit. She said this document was the one that Hans Hjertonsson had put up in his argument, it is a Jim Cook cell site and sector of the SE and SW of the SE Turlock tower and it has all the calls of 3/29 and 3/30 and Jim Cook testified to all that. She said it was used by the defense in their rebuttal, cross examinations and closing statements.
Hans Hjertonsson said Marlisa Ferreira is using a slide that was used in the preliminary hearing, not this trial. She is using one slide that says it is a 110 degree sector that does not exist. Judge Zuniga got pissed off because her arguments are getting personal, and they were, they were talking about each one lying. She’s not happy when this happens. Jai Gohel said there was no testimony in the trial about this particular slide and the preliminary hearing testimony is not argument, it is misleading. On 3/30/12, Korey Kauffman not hitting off of Mike Cooley/Frank Carson properties. There is no cell phone evidence that says that. She is mis-stating the defense’s argument. Marlisa Ferreira said she never said the 30th, she was talking about the 29th and trying to prove Korey Kauffman was not in Mariposa, like Sharee Hendrix said.
So Marlisa Ferreira put the two slides side by side and they are different colors and the information is exactly the same. The slides are also numbered different in the bottom right hand corner.
Percy Martinez, who has not been there the last two days, his brother was filling in, I believe his name is Dan (?), he said it is misleading and creates confusion in the jury room.
Marlisa Ferreira said it is not misleading it is just an argument. They reacted to something that is not reactable.
Judge Zuniga says the attorneys are arguing different inferences that they see in this evidence. The Judge noted it is unusual for preliminary hearing evidence to be used in closing arguments. She needs to clarify to the jury. Judge Zuniga also noted there were two jury instructions that are left to be finished so she wants to do that today. Marlisa Ferreira should finish at 3:45PM.
The Jury was up at 3:23PM. Marlisa Ferreira did clarify for the jury in regards to the page numbers. She started talking about the cell sites that Korey Kauffman was hitting. It does show Mike Cooley and Pop and Cork.
She also noted that Robert Woody said that Baljit Athwal should have hid the body better.
She said the defense downplayed Praveen Singh’s office invasion as an employee was shot at the office.
She talked about Michael Maunakea and the cell phone information.
She talked about Victor Navar, a hard core criminal that lied about much, but he never did call 911. The Victor Navar case is not before the jury now, these defendants are.
She talked about Jeff Ligero and his testimony on offers to Victor Navar. Navar ended up getting 21 years. He got 5 years off for testifying in this case and 5 years off for testifying in his cellie’s case. He is looking at a manslaughter case. The defense is claiming there are many witnesses who want to settle a score. In the Robert Woody interviews, the defense is claiming that Domby said the time has passed/this ship has sailed. That Domby said they didn’t go up that night.
She pointed at the three defendants and said these men are not innocent. She said Frank Carson thinks the way he acts is for the greater good (or something to that effect). She says it is not OK to kill a young man.
Baljit Athwal relationship with Frank Carson, he has called him many times at his office and she says they have no idea how many throw phones they used. The Athwals wanted to help Robert Woody, so they fixed his teeth. Robert Woody was fired for stealing soda, “of all things,” she said.
Then she put up a list of witnesses and went through those witnesses so fast, I didn’t have time to look at the list. The first name on the list was Patrick Hampton. She moved extremely fast. It is a document that will apparently be made available to the jury.
Robert Woody said Korey Kauffman was shot in the back. Faye Springer said there were holes in the back of the shirt and jacket.
Frank Carson, she said, asked for a favor. For Robert Woody to threaten Korey Kauffman.
There were conversations at Pop and Cork, talking about Kauffman, some of the things he was doing.
Baljit and Daljit Athwal had baited the property with pipes. Baljit and Daljit Athwal gave Korey Kauffman the worst beating in his life and then shot him.
Baljit Athwal used his truck to go to Mariposa and Robert Woody confirmed. Kirk Bunch said Robert Woody pointed and directed Cory Brown to where the body was and came within 5 ft.
She said Baljit Athwal reported his truck stolen.
There was blood on the back of the jacket.
The Athwals kept telling Robert Woody to keep your mouth shut.
Frank Carson hired private investigators.
She talked about cutting off the fingers and toes.
Frank Carson told them to use throwaway phone. Frank Carson told them to file lawsuits, which the Athwals had done. There was an objection.
Marlisa Ferreira put up a chart of statements by investigators. Another objection that went to a sidebar. It was a long sidebar. She came back and took that down and put up a reasonable doubt explanation. She said the defense used smoke and mirrors. So many imaginative things have been put out by the defense. Their statements are everyone is lying. She said 187 PC is an unlawful killing of a person, she said lying in wait and two shots, maybe three in the back. Witnesses saw patrols on the property.
Baljit Athwal’s intent was to beat Korey Kauffman and burn his truck after Korey Kauffman was killed. Then he denied knowing Korey Kauffman. Baljit Athwal had taken a loaded firearm to the property and had told Robert Woody to shut up and they did show up in the same cell site.
Frank Carson made threats, talked about guards, solicited people, Patrick Hampton mainly. He ran for DA to stop the investigation and he represented Robert Woody asking him for help. She said this is first degree, 187 homicide, due to the threats. There is no second degree or voluntary manslaughter here.
She said the defense is claiming there are biases, but no witnesses have said that. Defense attorneys are not guardians of the constitution. Juries are the one that do that. She said the post-murder silence is deafening. Apparently, there were no issues on the property after Korey Kauffman went missing. Praveen Singh said Frank Carson told him there was no longer a problem, he took care of.
Showing an array of pictures, the defense should be ashamed of what they did and Korey Kauffman is the victim here. The Kauffman family was upset and crying at that point. I do feel for these people.
Dan Martinez, sitting in for Percy Martinez, had claimed to the Judge that Marlisa Ferreira was crying at the end of her argument. I don’t think so, her voice cracked, but it was coming from the gallery and the Kauffman family. There was an advocate for the DA’s office that was also crying. Marlisa Ferreira was done at 3:48PM.
The jury was sent out. They are coming back tomorrow morning at 9 AM. We will go into deliberations. Everyone will be relieved to get this done and over with. It has been an ordeal for many people, especially the families and defendants.
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Somebody wanted me to get a copy of jury instructions, but they aren’t done. So I can’t do anything until they are done. Court was only about half full today. I think they will be out a few days, if they are out more than 3 days, we don’t have any court the month of July. Like I always say: Don’t take my word for it, come to court and find out for yourself, but it’s over now we just have the verdict. It has been quite a hoot! I’ll try to get something up tomorrow if anything happens, but that’s all I’ve got. Good night everybody!