DAVID CAMM BLOG: Janice Renn Testifies
Sept. 3, 2013
WITNESS: Lynn Scamahorn (cont'd)
Former DNA Analyst for the Indiana State Police Crime Lab
Shortly after 9 a.m. Tuesday morning (and a lengthy Labor Day weekend), court was called into session and jurors were ushered into the courtroom.
Lynn Scamahorn, a former DNA analyst for the Indiana State Police, continued her testimony. It would be her third day on the stand.
"I promise this is the last day," defense attorney Stacy Uliana said.
"Thank you," Scamahorn laughed.
Scamahorn testified to various fingernail clippings and swabs that were taken from the bodies of Kim and Jill Camm. She also testified that a fingernail was found in the right front floorboard of the Ford Bronco at the murder scene. She said her tests showed that the fingernail did not belong to David, Brad or Jill Camm, and was consistent with the DNA of Kim Camm.
The defense team then presented a mockup of the gray t-shirt worn by defendant David Camm on the night of the murders, and placed the mockup on a mannequin. The duplicate of the actual shirt was divided into section – or "areas" – where blood was found.
Defense attorney Stacy Uliana got Scamahorn to walk her through the various "areas."
The first was Area 30, which is perhaps the most contentious part of the case. You will likely hear A LOT about Area 30 in the coming weeks. Located near the front of the shirt, near the bottom – or hem – Area 30 contains eight small stains of blood belonging to Jill Camm. In past trials, prosecutors have alleged that some of the stains are what's called "high velocity impact spatter," or microscopic blood droplets that can only be created when the person wearing the clothing is within four feet of a victim as they are being shot by a gun.
Alternatively, defense attorneys in previous trials have said that the dots are "contact stains" that David Camm received when he leaned over his daughter Jill's bloody hair.
But there are also other areas as well. In Area 40 and Area 23 of the t-shirt – located on the back of the t-shirt, near the right-hand side – Scamahorn testified that she found DNA consistent with Jill Camm. In total, Scamahorn said she found Jill's blood in four areas of the t-shirt.
She also said she found Bradley Camm's blood in 4-5 areas of Camm's t-shirt, specifically on the chest area
No blood was found on the gym shorts Camm was wearing that night, according to Scamahorn.
"Now if you will excuse me," Uliana said, "I will have to undress the mannequin and redress him with the sweatshirt."
Uliana removed the mockup of David Camm's t-shirt and replaced it with a mockup of the sweatshirt found at the murder scene – the one that was eventually traced to Charles Boney, Camm's alleged accomplice.
Scamahorn testified that she did two rounds of DNA testing on the sweatshirt. The first round took place in Sept. 2001, and she found unidentified female DNA on the sweatshirt, near the hem of the shirt as well as near the upper left shoulder.
That DNA would later be traced to Mala Singh Mattingly, Boney's girlfriend at the time of the murders.
Bradley's DNA was discovered on the shirt, according to Scamahorn. And Kim's was found on the left sleeve of Boney's shirt.
"And as a DNA analyst, you can't tell us how that DNA was deposited, can you?" Uliana asked.
"No," Scamahorn replied.
Uliana asked if she could tell if the sleeve of the shirt was twisted when the DNA was deposited there.
"No," Scamahorn said.
Lastly, Charles Boney's DNA was discovered on the sweatshirt, near the collar.
"And you did not find David Camm's DNA anywhere on the sweatshirt?" Uliana asked.
"No I did not," Scamahorn replied.
"You noted that there was a name, or nickname, on the collar," Uliana said.
"Yes I did," Scamahorn said. "I believe it to be ‘Backbone.'"
"Thank you," Uliana said.
In the past, Charles Boney has stated that his nickname was "Backbone."
Uliana then pointed Scamahorn's attention to the microscopic stains in the contentious "Area 30."
"The number of stains in Area 30 has always been something of a mystery, correct?" Uliana asked.
"It's been a source of much questions," Scamahorn said.
A short time later, jurors asked several questions of Scamahorn. Here are some of them, along with her answers:
QUESTION: Was this a typical DNA investigation?
ANSWER: "I would say it's typical of a murder case with a lot of evidence," Scamahorn said, adding that, "this is a very large case."
QUESTION: Was the fingernail found in the right front floorboard of the Bronco consistent with being torn, or clipped?
ANSWER: "That's not something I can make a judgment call on," Scamahorn said.
QUESTION: Was DNA from either Charles Boney or his girlfriend, Mala Singh Mattingly, found on the fingernail clippings from Kim Camm?
ANSWER: "No to both of those," Scamahorn said.
Scamahorn also had to answer why the DNA on the collar of the sweatshirt – DNA that was eventually traced to Charles Boney – wasn't run through the FBI Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) until after David Camm's first trial. CODIX is a catalog of DNA profiles belonging to convicted felons that contained Boney's profile dating back to 1997.
Scamahorn said she was unaware of DNA on the collar, and that she never tested the collar in 2001 because there was writing on it (the word "Backbone") and she didn't want to destroy the writing.
Uliana pointed out that, had then-Prosecutor Stan Faith shown her the DNA, she would have tested it – and found Boney years earlier.
"That t-shirt has been tested a lot," Uliana said, referring to Camm's t-shirt. "But not all the items in this case have been tested the way that t-shirt has."
A letter of complaint
A few minutes later, the jury was excused for lunch. But the attorneys weren't done.
After the jury left, Scamahorn remained on the stand and the attorneys discussed a matter the jurors would never hear.
Uliana presented Scamahorn with a document and asked her to describe it.
"It's a letter that I wrote regarding the first trial and the prosecutor," she said.
Scamahorn said that the first prosecutor – Stan Faith – called her into a private meeting in his office during a break from her testimony in the first trial. He then allegedly demanded that Scamahorn testify that she found David Camm's DNA on the mysterious gray sweatshirt that, years later, would be traced to Boney. Scamahorn said she couldn't do this because the facts didn't back it up.
"He was not pleasant, I would say," Scamahorn said.
"He cursed at you?" Uliana asked.
"And he wanted you to say things that you felt were beyond science?" Uliana asked.
"Yes," Scamahorn said, adding, "he was very much not happy with me."
Scamahorn said Faith threatened to contact her superiors and that it was "definitely implied" that her job was being threatened. She also said Faith threatened to charge her with obstruction of justice if she didn't testify to what he wanted.
Uliana asked if she thought Faith was trying to wrongfully influence her to testify to facts that were beyond science.
"Possibly. Possibly. Yeah."
"He did threaten your job," Uliana said.
"That is true."
"And he did threaten to charge you with a felony," Uliana added.
"That is true," Scamahorn replied.
Moments later, Special Prosecutor Stan Levco rose to address Scamahorn. He asked her what effect Faith's actions had on her testimony in THIS trial.
"No effect on my testimony," Scamahorn said.
He then asked if he (Levco) or anyone else on the current prosecution team had ever threatened her in any way.
"No," Scamahorn smiled. "Not at all."
Uliana then asked the judge to allow the testimony and evidence related to Faith's alleged actions to be submitted to the jury when they came back from lunch.
"This has nothing to do with Ms. Scamahorn's credibility," Uliana said. "This shows tunnel vision at best," and "a win-at-all-costs mentality at worst."
"It goes to the credibility of the other analysts in this case…the ones that will go beyond the science," she said.
Levco countered: "I don't think it proves anything as to whether David Camm is guilty in this case."
In the end, Judge Jonathan Dartt decided against admitting the evidence, stating that while he doesn't condone the alleged actions of Faith, he said it was a fight "that will be left for another day."
WITNESS: Shelly Romero
Former K-9 Handler for Indiana State Police
Some time after lunch, the jury heard from Shelly Romero, a former Indiana State Police K-9 handler, who is currently unemployed.
A middle-aged woman with long blonde hair, Romero recalled the night of Sept. 28, 2000 – the night of the murders.
"Did you know the defendant, David Camm?" Levco asked.
"Yes sir," she replied.
"Is it fair to say that on Sept. 28, 2000, you were good friends?"
"Yes sir," she replied.
Romero testified that on the night of Sept. 28, 2000, she was driving home from a K-9 training seminar when she heard about the Camm murders on the police radio. She said she arrived at the scene 14 minutes after the initial call.
"One of the troops passing by…I asked him what we had, and he said, ‘It's not good,'" Romero testified.
She then saw David Camm at the scene and hugged him.
"He said, ‘Somebody's killed my f---ing family!'" Romero testified.
"When I first arrived, he was real quiet, kind of withdrawn, like he didn't want to be there," she said.
She then recounted another conversation she had with him by phone on Saturday, two days after the murders.
"He was sobbing. He was very upset, I think," she said. "He asked if I thought his kids were in heaven. Knowing that David was a God-fearing person, I said, ‘Do you believe in God?' He said, ‘I do.' And I said, ‘Well there's your answer.'"
She said he also brought up the moment he gave CPR to his son Brad, after finding his body in the Bronco.
"He said that blood was just coming out of Bradley's mouth, and he didn't know whether to savor it or spit it out."
Then, Romero said, his thoughts turned to himself.
"At one point, he asked, ‘Who would be interested in me?'" Romero said. She said Camm was concerned that a man whose wife and kids had been murdered would not be datable.
Camm would eventually be arrested, but Romero said he wouldn't be the only person under suspicion. She said about a week after he was arrested, the police executed a search warrant at her home, and she spent the next year submitting blood and DNA samples for tests.
Moments later, defense attorney Richard Kammen cross-examined Romero. He asked her about Camm's alleged comment that, "Someone killed my f---ing family!"
"Could it be shock?" he asked.
"I'm sure it could be a lot of things," Romero replied.
Romero testified that in the days after the murders, Camm was unable to get his money or his wallet, since both were inside the home, which was now off limits due to it being a crime scene. So she offered to purchase a suit for him herself so he could go to the funerals.
She said she never made it. Her supervisor called her and ordered her back to the post. She would later learn that Camm was about to be arrested.
"You were at the post when he was arrested?" Kammen asked.
"And you saw him taken away?"
Romero said she would later attend the funerals herself.
"After David was arrested, it got a little complicated, didn't it? For you?" Kammen asked.
Romero faltered for a moment, not knowing what to say.
"To your knowledge, there was no prohibition to your being there?" Kammen asked.
"There was not," Romero said. "There were several officers there." She added that she shot a video of the funerals, so "if David was released, David could see that."
Then Kammen questioned her about her opinion of Camm's arrest.
"You questioned the quality of the investigation," Kammen said. "You thought things moved a little quickly."
"Yes," she replied, adding that she became a "black sheep" in the department for questioning the investigation. She said she was suspended a few days after going to the funeral. The reason, according to Romero? She claims she was punished for making a modification to her K-9's cage.
"He could not stand upright in the original cage he had," she said. Romero claimed the modification had been approved by her sergeant.
"You felt like they were making an example of you?" Kammen asked.
"You're not employed now, correct?"
Upon jury questioning, Romero said that five years ago, she was called to Indianapolis.
"When I got there, I was told I wasn't needed anymore," she said. "I was told I could resign or go on disability." She said the alleged disability was for a mental disorder. When asked what that disorder might be, she replied, "I have no idea."
Nevertheless, she said she's been "paid to stay home" -- a standard practice while on disability. She receives half her salary. She said she wants to go back to her job, but every couple of years she is evaluated by doctors -- also standard practice -- and despite being cleared by the doctors to return to her job three times, the Indiana State Police will not allow her to come back.
A short time later, she was excused from the stand.
WITNESS: Janice Renn
Mother of Kim Camm, grandmother of Brad and Jill Camm (all deceased)
On Tuesday afternoon, Janice Renn – Kim Camm's mother and the grandmother of Brad and Jill Camm – took the stand.
She said she lives in New Albany, Ind. and has been married to her husband, Frank Renn, for 49 years.
"Do you have any children?" Boone County Prosecutor Todd Meyer asked.
"We had two girls," she said. "Kimberly and Debbie."
"We had three: Brad and Jill. And we have a step-granddaughter."
Renn described Brad as, "smart like his mother." She said he liked music, and "when he was little, he would watch Disney movies." She said he had the dialogue memorized.
"He said when he grew up, he wanted to be either a guy who drew houses or a teacher."
She said Jill was a "strong willed" girl who looked forward to playing basketball.
She described her daughter, Kim:
"Kim was always a quiet child," she said. "When she was young she had asthma real bad…she was just a quiet person. She liked to handle things herself."
Janice explained that before Sept. 28, 2000, she would often work weekends and Karem's Meats in New Albany, owned by Debbie's husband Greg.
She said her daughter, Kim, would often come in to see her, usually with her two kids.
"For some reason, they liked to check out the freezer," Renn smiled. "I don't know why."
She said she never saw Charles Boney there, despite claims that he frequented the meat market.
Meyer then asked her to call the events of Sept. 28, 2000 – the day of the murders.
Renn said it was the last day she saw Kim, Brad and Jill alive.
"I picked up Brad to take him to get his allergy shot," Renn said, adding that Kim was going to pick Jill up from dance class.
"He [Brad] was hungry, as always, so I gave him a snack," Renn said. She said he did his homework, and then "he watched some TV."
At about 5:40, Renn said Kim showed up with Jill, to pick Brad up. Renn said Jill was hungry, so she made her a bag of cookies, while Kim munched on crackers.
Renn said she can still remember her last image of Kim, Brad and Jill.
"Every time he left my house, he gave me the peace sign," she said of Brad. She said the last thing she saw was the Bronco driving away, with Brad and Jill flashing the peace sign, with Kim smiling.
Lastly, Renn testified about something she allegedly heard David Camm say at the funeral home days after murders. He allegedly said that after the funerals, he was going to leave town.
Camm's defense team had no questions for Renn.
WITNESS: James Biddle
Retired Lieutenant for Indiana State Police
Late Tuesday afternoon, James Biddle, a retired Lieutenant with the Indiana State Police, took the stand.
"I considered David Camm to be a friend," Biddle said.
He recalled an alleged incident that took place the Saturday after the murders. He said he was at David Camm's home, taking part in the investigation, when he was involved in a confrontation with David Camm.
"I could hear loud voices," he said.
He later discovered that Camm and his uncle, Sam Lockhart, had arrived at the home and wanted to go inside to get some property.
Biddle said Camm was told that the home was still a crime scene.
"He said something to the effect of, ‘Jim, we just want to get into the house to get those things,'" Biddle recalled.
Biddle refused to let him in. That's when, he said, Camm "chest bumped" him.
Prosecutors asked if it was an accident.
"No sir, it was not an accident," Biddle said.
Biddle said Lockhart and a state trooper were able to calm Camm down, but not before he called the investigators "dumba—es" and kicked a cardboard box, spilling its contents. He then allegedly swore at the officers and told them to get their "trash" out of his yard.
At this point in the testimony, court recessed for the day.
Travis K. Kircher is a Web producer for WDRB News. He can be reached at email@example.com.