Oct. 11. 2013
LEBANON, Ind. (WDRB) -- This trial -- relatively speaking -- is almost over.
There are several hurdles you have to get through in a murder trial. There's jury selection. Opening statements. The prosecution's case. The defense's case. Closing arguments. Deliberation. And lastly, the verdict.
Today, the defense rested its case.
Next week, prosecutors are expected to bring rebuttal witnesses, to challenge some of the points brought up by the defense in the last three weeks. And shortly after that, closing arguments will commence.
It's expected that the jury will begin deliberations the week of Oct. 21.
Here are the final chapters of the defense's case:
Witness: Damon Fay (cont'd)
Consultant and Law Enforcement Instructor
Expert in Police Interrogations and Advanced Homicide Investigation
Yesterday Damon Fay criticized the case against David Camm, calling investigators' interrogations of Charles Boney "ridiculous" and three times claiming that they intentionally tried to get Boney to make false accusations against Camm.
Today, Special Prosecutor Stan Levco turned the criticisms back on Fay.
Levco began by pointing out that Fay is charging $150/hr. for his services.
"This would be the first time you have testified as a consultant in a criminal case?" Levco asked.
Fay admitted that this was correct.
"Do you know how you happened to get hired in this case?" Levco asked.
Fay replied that Camm's defense attorney, Richard Kammen, heard him speak at a conference and asked if he'd like to take a look at the case.
Levco then criticized what he saw as Fay's piecemeal knowledge of the investigation.
"Would it be helpful for you to talk to the investigative officer that investigated this case?" Levco asked.
"No," Fay replied, arguing that he, "read what they wrote."
Levco wanted to know if Fay actually thought he knew as much about the case as they did.
Fay responded that he did not, but "I know what they presented to the court. That's what I went through."
Levco then asked Fay a hypothetical. Suppose he was called to a homicide scene where a man's wife and children were killed. Is there anyone he would automatically consider an obvious suspect?
"Yes," Fay replied.
"The surviving spouse," Fay admitted.
Levco then took Fay back to the beginning of the investigation, in Sept. 2000, when Detectives Darryl Gibson and Mickey Neal interviewed David Camm about the murders.
Levco wanted to know: did Fay think they were suffering from confirmation bias?
"I didn't see any particular bias," but added that by the time Camm was arrested, "I believe that they did become biased against him."
Did he believe the police arrested David Camm too early?
"Yes, I believe that," but he also admitted that police can arrest a suspect early and still have the right guy.
Levco seemed awestruck at Fay's cynicism against the Indiana State Police.
"Did they do anything right?" he asked.
"I think eventually getting Charles Boney off the street was singularly superb," Fay replied.
"So they did a few things right?" Levco said.
"Yes they did," Fay responded.
Levco then wanted to know if Fay thought it was odd that David Camm told investigators he never even touched his wife after he found her body.
"I didn't find that unusual at all," Fay said.
What about Camm initiating CPR on the body of Bradley, then stopping, running across the street to get his uncle, then coming back and initiating CPR again?
"You don't even find that a little bit unusual?" Levco demanded.
Fay said he did not.
"As a police officer, are you qualified to do give CPR?" Levco asked.
Levco then wanted to know when someone who is administering CPR is supposed to stop. Fay said the school of thought has changed recently. He first gave the original consensus.
"You wait until medical people arrive," he said, then adding that nowadays the consensus is that, "you give until you basically have a response."
And the fact that Camm did neither? Unusual?
"No," Fay said. "He's calling for help. Another live, warm body to help him out. I don't find that unusual at all."
Levco then turned to Fay's assertion that the Camm murders were simply a sexual assault -- perpetrated solely by Charles Boney -- that turned violent, rather than a staged sex crime set up by David Camm.
Had Fay ever heard of a case -- other than this one, as Fay saw it -- in which a sexual assault had been perpetrated in front of two children. Fay said that he had not.
Levco was incredulous. Did Fay see any evidence at all, in his examination of this case, that Camm was guilty of the murders.
"I did not," Fay said.
"You leave no room for even the possibility that he might be guilty, is that correct?" Levco demanded.
"I see no possibility," Fay said.
Levco then asked Fay whether he felt the grey sweatshirt -- eventually traced to Charles Boney -- implicated Camm in any way. A graphic image of the crime scene was shown to the jury. In it, the bodies of Kim Camm and Bradley Camm can be seen lying on the concrete floor of the Camm garage, next to Kim Camm's Bronco. The grey sweatshirt can be seen under the body of Bradley.
Levco wanted to know if Fay thought the sweatshirt was "spread out underneath him" or "tucked" underneath him.
Fay said he thought it was "adjacent" to Bradley.
"Do you think it was possible that it was put there next to him?" Levco asked, implying that Camm placed it there.
"It was put there at some point," Fay replied.
Did he think David Camm might have placed it there after giving Bradley CPR in order to frame Boney?
"I don't see any evidence of that," he said. "It was put there initially by Mr. Boney."
"Where do you have evidence of that?" Levco demanded, pointing out that Fay didn't have a videotape of the crime.
Eventually Fay admitted that it's possible Camm placed it there.
"Wouldn't that be some evidence of his guilt?" Levco asked.
Levco said that if Camm was guilty, "wouldn't he have a motive to put that sweatshirt there?"
"Yes," Fay admitted.
Would Charles Boney have a motive for putting it there if he was guilty?
"Yes," Fay said.
Levco demanded to know what it was. Fay said the motive would be forgetting the sweatshirt while running away. Confused, Levco questioned Fay's definition of "motive."
"Do you think Charles Boney would intentionally leave his sweatshirt at the scene of the crime to implicate himself?" Levco demanded.
"No," Fay admitted. "Not intentionally."
Fay was then confronted about his triple statements yesterday that he believed investigators intentionally tried to get Boney to say false things about David Camm.
"I don't think they are actively trying to frame him [Camm]," Fay said. "I just think they got locked into confirmation bias."
However, he added moments later that he believed investigators employed "gymnastics trying to get him to say whatever" and "tipped their hand" that they wanted Camm to be implicated.
Moments later, it was defense attorney Richard Kammen's turn to question Fay, and he attempted to patch up some of the damage done by Levco.
Kammen pointed out that in the 18 months before Charles Boney was identified, David Camm did nothing to frame Boney, "other than trying to get the prosecutor to run a DNA profile on an unknown male."
"If I'm gonna frame the black guy," Kammen asked, wouldn't he tell police there was a strange black guy running around?
"Yes," Fay said.
Kammen asked Fay if he's ever seen a case where a man tries to frame someone, goes to jail, and "hopes that the police do their job and the frame-ee is discovered."
"Have you ever seen that in the real world?" Kammen asked.
"No," Fay said.
Kammen then asked about Charles Boney's claim that Camm killed his family with a gun, then turned the gun on Boney, with the intent of claiming later that he found an intruder at his home and shot him. If that truly was Camm's plan, Kammen asked, how would he explain that all four people had been shot with the same gun?
"That goes into the column of things that are quite readily disproved," Fay responded.
Fay was then asked to provide more analysis of the crime scene.
"The killer likely arrived without all the means necessary to control or dominate the scene," he said, noting that the killer appears to have "relied on their impulsivity and made it up as they go along."
"Let's cut to the chase," Kammen said. "You believe Charles Boney is guilty."
"Yes I do," Fay said.
Kammen theorized that Charles Boney went into the Camm home to get a "souvenir" -- a trophy that sexual perverts keep for gratification -- then was surprised by Kim Camm coming home and, with his plan spiraling out of control, murdered her and the children. Camm is arrested a few days later for the murders, but five years later, the real murderer -- according to Kammen -- is found.
"Then the prosecutor has to hold a press conference that says, 'We've held an innocent man in jail for five years,'" Kammen said.
"Yes," Fay said.
"Our 'fresh eyes' investigation wasn't," Kammen added.
Kammen then asked Fay what he told him when Kammen first asked him to look at the case.
"I told you, Mr. Kammen, I would look at the case, but my heart is in prosecution," he said. "If I see that Mr. Camm is guilty, I'm out of here."
Fay was excused from the stand a short time later.
Witness: Julie Blankenbaker
David Camm's sister
A short time later, David Camm's sister, Julie Blankenbaker, took the stand in her brother's defense. She is four years older than he.
"I'm a registered nurse," she said, in a quiet, even tone. "I work at University of Louisville Hospital in Louisville, Ky."
On Sept. 28, 2000 -- the night of the murders -- she said she worked a Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. job at National Health Services.
"Where were you when you first heard about the murders?" Kammen asked.
"I was at home," Blankenbaker said. "My home was in Louisville, Ky." She said she got a call from her brother, Donnie Camm, informing her of the shootings.
"The first thing you had to do was tell your parents?" Kammen asked. "I'm gonna guess that was pretty tough."
"They learned before we could get there," she said.
Blankenbaker testified when she arrived at her parents' home, her mom was already grieving.
"She was being alone and just rocking and wailing, 'My babies, my babies,'" Blankenbaker said. "I didn't know what to do for her. She was just in agony. I just stood there."
Blankenbaker then described her drive to David Camm's house.
"It was like...something out of a movie," she said. "Just lights, lights all over the place."
"Dave was there," she said. "I remember him wearing a state police jacket."
"What did you see at Dave's house?" Kammen asked.
"Police tape and the lights and the police milling around," she said. "Again, it's like something you see on TV."
She said she rendezvoused with other family members at the scene.
"We just hugged," she said. "For the longest time we all just kind of held each other."
Blankenbaker said a short time later, Camm left with Det. Mark Slaughter, to answer questions.
"I think he said, 'I need to go with them. I need to answer questions. I need to figure this thing out,'" Blankenbaker said.
Blankenbaker testified that over the weekend, Camm took medications for his migraines, as well as anxiety.
Kammen asked about the first night.
"Did anyone sleep?"
"We did not sleep, no," she said.
The next morning, David Camm called Aegon, his wife's employer, and ended up in a conversation about benefits, but Blankenbaker claimed he never planned for that to happen.
"I can tell you why that call was made, because there's been such a big deal made about it," she said. "It was my idea."
She said Kim Camm had been frustrated about the traffic to and from work everyday, and when Blankenbaker saw a traffic report on the news, she felt she should call Aegon and tell them Kim had been murdered. But Camm stopped her.
"He said, 'Julie, I'll do this. I'm gonna have to do these kinds of things,'" Blankenbaker testified. "He never said the word insurance."
"There was a point where Dave was sitting in the living room by himself...and he was looking at his hand, and he was just kind of caressing it," she said. "I realized there was blood there."
She testified that when she tried to get him to wipe it off, he replied that, "It's from Brad and that's all I've got left of him."
She said Camm at one point lamented his performance of CPR on Bradley.
"He said, 'Julia, I tried to do CPR and I couldn't even do it right,'" she said.
The testimony then turned toward the following days, when Blankenbaker said she and Janice Renn went to the Camm residence and asked investigators to retrieve clothing and jewelry for the family to be buried in. She said there were a couple of pieces of jewelry that she remembered Kim wearing -- diamond earrings and a necklace.
"I never saw those diamond earrings, and that necklace was not there," she said. She added that during a one-hour open casket viewing, she noticed Kim wasn't wearing them on her person either, implying that there had been a robbery the night of the murders.
On Sunday, she said Camm attended a baby dedication at the Georgetown Community Church. She said the media stayed outside for the service. Inside, she said Camm was very emotional.
Special Prosecutor Stan Levco had only a few questions for Blankenbaker. He pointed out that Camm admitted to his sister that, regarding his CPR on Bradley, "he couldn't do it right."
"I think he said he forgot to pinch off his nose," Blankenbaker replied.
"Did he tell you that he did it on THREE different occasions?" Levco asked.
"No," Blankenbaker said.
"Do you feel like you're an objective witness?" Levco asked.
"No further questions," Levco replied.
Blankenbaker was excused.
Witness: Karen Ancil
Former friend of Charles Boney
After lunch, Karen Ancil took the stand. Those who follow this blog regularly may recall that she's the witness the defense team had trouble contacting, and were asking Judge Jonathan Dartt to assist in locating.
Today, she was located inside the courtroom, in front of the jury.
With a bowl shaped haircut, the middle aged Indianapolis resident told the jury about her brief relationship with Charles Boney, several years ago -- and what he did in the hours after the Camm family murders.
"I met him through a mutual friend who was writing him daily while he was in prison," Ancil said, adding that she soon began writing him as well.
"Did you ever visit him while he was in prison?" defense attorney Stacy Uliana asked.
"No," Ancil replied.
But in June 2000, Boney was released from prison. Ancil said the two of them began speaking on the phone.
"When you guys talked, were some of those lengthy conversations?" Uliana asked.
Ancil replied that they were and she felt like she knew him.
Then came the crux of her testimony. Ancil said that just before 1 a.m. on Sept. 29, 2000 -- just hours after the murders -- she got a call from Charles Boney.
"Did he let you know that he had been at a murder scene involving children a few hours before?" Uliana asked.
Ancil said no, adding that, "he laughed and talked. We were actually making plans to come to Indianapolis for my...birthday. He wasn't apprehensive."
"He talked to my children," Ancil volunteered.
"Which did he talk to, do you know?" Uliana asked.
"All five," Ancil said.
"Did Boney actually come up and visit you?" Uliana asked.
Ancil said he did -- on Sept. 30.
"He was happy," she said, calling it a celebration. "Everybody was happy to see him."
She added that he even gave her kids "fatherly advice."
"He talked to my sons about not being in gangs and that sort of thing," she said.
Now that she knows about the Camm family murders, Ancil says she feels "tricked."
"I feel like he was putting on a sham," she said. "Seeing what's gone on over the years...I feel like he was playing a game -- a farce."
"As a mother, that upsets you?" Uliana asked.
"Yes it does. It's shocking."
She recalled the moment she found out he was a suspect in the murders.
"I woke up Sunday morning and he was on the TV in a red jumpsuit and he was walking through courthouse hallway," she said.
Her testimony wrapped up moments later.
Witness: Carl Colvin
Acquaintance of Charles Boney
Colvin, a beefy middle aged man in blue jeans, was the final defense witness.
He testified that around January/February of 2003, he was doing promotions for various kinds of shows, when he walked in to J.D. Byrider on Dixie Hwy. in Louisville, Ky. to speak with the general manager about a promotion.
He said Charles Boney was an employee there at the time.
"He just came up to me," Colvin said. "It was weird. We weren't friends. Every time I was in, he would just gravitate toward me."
One day, he said Charles Boney came to him as he was getting out of his car and said, "I got a TV that I want to sell -- a big screen."
Colvin said he asked if it was stolen and Boney said no. He wanted $250 for it. Colvin said a friend of his wanted one, so he agreed to come back and pick Boney up so they could drive to Boney's house and get the TV.
Colvin testified that he came back to J.D. Byrider around 4:45 p.m. that afternoon, and while he was inside the building, he overheard Boney through the walls.
"You could hear Boney on the phone cussing and arguing with somebody," he testified. He said he heard Boney scream, "It's my f--ing TV and I'll sell it if I want to!"
When they finally were ready to leave together, he said Boney was "just profusely haggard...sweating...he's still really, really angry."
He said Boney was sweating so much, he had to continuously wipe it off with a towel. As they were driving to Boney's home, he said Boney shouted, "I'll kill that b--h. That f--ing b--h, I'll kill her!"
A few moments later, Colvin said Boney told him, "I've got three bodies on my conscience, and one more is not gonna matter!"
"I kind of blew it off because people like to run their mouths," Colvin said.
He said he didn't call police. Defense attorney Richard Kammen wanted to know why not.
"Where I'm from, you just keep your mouth shut. It's none of my business."
But Boone County Prosecutor Todd Meyer had other questions for Colvin -- specifically how his name got to the defense team, and subsequently, to the news media.
"Your name got to Gary Dunn, right?" Meyer asked, referring to the defense team's private investigator. "Because Gary Dunn contacted you."
Colvin agreed that he did.
"So you provided information to the defense's private investigator before you provided information for law enforcement?" Meyer asked.
"At the time, I thought it WAS law enforcement," Colvin said.
Meyer pointed out that just two weeks later, Eric Zager, a television news reporter, contacted Colvin. Colvin said "somebody" gave Zager his number.
Colvin later admitted that Dunn called him and asked for him to attend Charles Boney's pre-trial hearing, "so he could see me and know that he was caught."
Was Colvin the only person to hear Boney's statement about the three bodies?
"Yeah, it was just me and him in a truck," Colvin said.
Meyer demanded to know why Colvin didn't ask Boney to explain what he meant by the "three bodies" on his conscience.
"When you grow up on the street, you don't ask questions like that," Colvin said.
But Boney's statement could have been in reference to murders in which Camm was an accomplice, Meyer theorized.
"He specifically said 'I,'" Colvin said. "He didn't saw 'we.'"
He was excused moments later.
"Mr. Kammen, you may call your next witness," Judge Dartt said.
"Your Honor," Kammen said, "David Camm rests."
The time was 2:41.
Travis K. Kircher is a Web Producer for WDRB News. He can be reached at email@example.com.