Bobby Cutts, Jr. Murder Trial
Day 2 - 2/5/08
donchais ‘s morning coverage.
Weisburn retakes the stand and is discussing the text messages between Stephanie Hawthorne and Cutts. (BTW, Stephanie was also pregnant by Cutts at the time. Stephanie aborted the baby the day Jessie’s body was found.)
There are a number of phone numbers the police looked at and the records they obtained allowed them to track Cutts’, day-by-day movement while Julie was missing.
Wednesday, June 13, 2007, 2:12 am, Cutts receives a call from Stephanie. The next call is 7:11 am from Cutts to Jessie. Cutts originally told LE that he made the call from home. We know he was at Stephanie’s.
From the records, they tracked Jessie’s movements (work, shopping, talking to her sister). The last call at 9:01 pm to Patty.
Police collected items from Jessie’s house; her wallet with driver license, social security card, etc.
Police spoke with Myisha Ferrell Sunday Nov. 4th, 2007. During the interview Myisha was more relaxed, and didn’t have the attitude she had previously. It was like a weight had been lifted off her.
Objection! Side bar….Overruled
Wednesday the 20th, Cutts was interviewed at the FBI office. Cutts said he spoke with Joe Butler at Champs (sports bar) and that he spoke with Stephanie. He said he previously forgot to tell LE.
Saturday June 23rd, Cutts was again in the FBI office. He appeared with his attorney Mr. Iams. Cutts wanted to show LE where the bodies were. He described the park and the area where the bodies were lying in the tall grass. They drove to the park with Cutts giving the directions from the back seat.
The call at 7:11 to Jessie was made while Cutts still had Jessie’s body with him, He admitted that he dumped her body shortly after.
Cutts lead LE directly to Jessie and Chloe. During this testimony, Cutts is staring at the table.
Photos of the area are being shown to the court. Weisburn confirms he saw the body. Jessie and Chloe are just lying in the grass, wrapped in the comforter; no shallow grave! Cutts was arrested that day. (Cutts has his hands over his eyes. He appears very uncomfortable.)
During the course of the car ride, there was no discussion about how the body got there? That’s correct.
When you first arrived at Jessie’s house, you were only concerned with finding a missing person.
Did asking Mr. Cutts about whether he and Kelly got along help you in finding the body? Yes, it was my purpose to figure out who everyone was and how it all fit together.
If he wasn’t a suspect, why did you search Cuts’ home, the very first day?
You had Cuts as a suspect on the first day? No.
Was anyone else spoken to multiple times that day? Yes.
Did you search any of those homes? No.
Well, that different, isn’t it?
Objection-sidebar…rephrase your question
You didn’t search anybody else’s home. No, I didn’t search the home, I walked through it.
When you arrived at the scene were you aware that people were told to get out of the house? Yes, I issued that order while enroute to the house.
You didn’t see any forced entry to the house? No.
Defense is saying that Blake’s DNA is on the bleach bottle and that Blake was alone in the house for quite a while. (So, they infer that Blake spilled the bleach.)
You began your interview with Cutts or Blake first? I know I spoke with Mr. Cutts first. We were standing in the driveway and then we went to my vehicle.
You were hoping that Blake could tell you where Jessie was? Yes, we sat and colored for about 15 minutes and chatted about what they were coloring.
Mommy broke the table, mommy’s crying, daddy’s mad, and mommy’s in the rug.
You didn’t have your “handy-dandy” tape recorder? (Snarky comments come out at every trial!)
No, I didn’t tape Blake.
Well had you taped him, we would have been able to hear what Blake said about his dad?
You have no idea whether what Blake said about mommies in the rug is true because he’s 2 years old? Correct.
Your saw an injury to Mr. Cutts’ hand? Yes.
Did you photograph it? No.
Did you check the rest of his body? No.
Did you find anything at the Cutts home? No, sir.
We find out that Stephanie was married, but separated while she was having the affair with Bobby.
Might that be the reason Mr. Cutts didn’t tell you about Stephanie? I don’t know.
You didn’t learn of any ill will between Bobby and Jessie? No.
None of the women you interviewed said Bobby was a violent person? That’s correct.
Holy cow! Cutts’ attorney just blew his case he stated that the only way they found Jessie’s body was by Cutts’ own admission of details of where she was!
No further questions.
Very long sidebar… (Judge Brown is a little person…when he stands on the step of the court reporter’s area he is as tall as the attorneys!)
30 minute break called….
(I have to say, the way this trial is being conducted, it is probably one of the better-run trials I have watched. It sure doesn’t have the circus element that Jensen or Spector1 have!)
Myisha Ferrell will be the next witness so the Judge calls an early lunch.
Sprocket and donchais combined coverage below.
donchais and I both feel Judge Brown is brilliant in the fact that he will have the courtroom take their lunches and breaks so as not to break up the testimony of witnesses. This means the testimony has a much bigger impact on the jury. We’ve both never seen this before. The Judge also has a great command of his courtroom. Like donchais said before, there is none of the circus atmosphere that we have seen in trials like Spector and Jensen. So, will this trial run the entire month, or will it be over in two weeks? What do you think? Our advice is, Cutts, “cut” a deal now and save your life.
As the camera panned the gallery during testimony this morning, donchais was wondering if the man sitting next to Patty Porter was her ex-husband and Jessie’s father, Ned Davis.
We have video in the courtroom and you can see the Judge walking around the well of the court. Judge Brown appears to be a bit shorter than the rest of the players. Now there is sound.
Cutts enters the courtroom. We are on pins and needles since we believe Myisha will be taking the stand. The camera zooms in on Cutts. The camera makes him look hard. The fu man chu beard doesn’t help. Damn. Lost the picture but I’ve got sound. Pic’s back.
Cutts and his attorneys converse. It appears we are just waiting for the jury. Cutts, listening to his female attorney, nods his head. Drops his head to listen, then nods again.
And we wait. I can almost imagine the tension that is going on in that courtroom right now, waiting for this next witness. Cutts continues to drop his head and listen to the female attorney. Cutts rubs his brown and keeps his head down. I keep wondering how Patty Porter must be holding up. The camera pans back. All rise!
Cutts stands and he almost looks smug, with his eyes averted and then looking down. Does he look at the jury? It’s hard to tell.
State calls Myisha Ferrell.
Myisha Ferrell is brought to the stand. She has chosen not to have her face televised.
Myisha is 30 years old and has known Cutts since middle school.
Until recently, she lived with her daughter Alexis who is 10.
The camera is on Cutts's face while the Judge asks that the witness speak into the microphone.
A few months ago, she pled guilty to Complicity and gross abuse of a corpse. Myisha’s deal is two years for testifying against Cutts.
Q: What is your understanding of what you and to do to plead guilty and receive a two year sentence?
A: Testify truthfully in this case.
Wednesday evening she went to bingo and then the sports bar. Afterwards she then went home and partied all night…drinking, smoking dope, playing cards with friends. She stayed up all night.
Q: In the early morning hours, June 14th, did you see Cutts?
A: As someone was leaving she heard that he was outside.
Q: Were you surprised that he was there?
A: It was after 6 am. He usually called before he came. He’s never done that before.
Q: What did he say?
A: He said he needed to talk to me.
(This was outside in the truck.)
Q: After looking at him you could tell something was wrong?
A: He appeared dysfunctional.
Q: What do you mean?
A: He didn’t look right. I went back and grabbed some cigs and went to talk to him.
Q: Were you out of it?
A: I was high.
Cutts told Myisha something was wrong, something bad had happened. He looked nervous. He said something was wrong his baby’s mother. Cutts said that Jessie was in the back of the truck. She didn’t see Jessie in the back seat.
Q: As you’re driving did you see any other police officers?
A: Yes. On Twelfth Street.
We have already had several sidebars. The screen is blurry now, so that Myisha’s face can not be clearly seen.
Q: Did Bobby do anything to see that he saw the officer?
A: He waved at him.
They continued to drive north. They went to the 77N Highway.
Another sidebar. The screen goes way blurry, then comes into focus on Cutts who is intently reading a typewritten paper. (If that’s true, that he saw another officer in a patrol car, then that is another witness that places Cutts at her house in the early morning hours.) The objection is overruled.
Q: What did he say when he got in the truck?
A: Somethings wrong. Something bad.
Q: How was his demeanor?
A: I can’t describe it. Something was wrong. I didn’t ask questions of him. He didn’t speak for a time.
Q: He didn’t speak for a minute?
A: I can’t tell you how long. It just took him a minute to start talking.
Q: What’s the next thing he said?
A: He said something’s wrong with the baby’s mother.
Q: Did you know who (he meant)?
A: Yeah. Blake’s mom.
Q: How did you know?
A: Otherwise, he would have said his wife.
Q: Did he say anything further to you?
A: I can’t say exactly what he said right after that. He was talking in spurts.
Q: Were you still driving this whole time?
Q: As he’s driving and talking in spurts what did he say?
A: That she was in the back.
Q: When he said that, did you see her in the back seat?
Q: Did you understand what he said?
A: No. It took a few minutes to grab all that.
Q: Did he say anything further?
A: Um. I can’t remember what he said exactly right then.
Q: Did he make any gestures?
A: Like this.
Q: Did you see in the back of the truck?
Q: After he said what was in the back, did he say anything else?
A: I can’t remember what he said exactly right after that.
Q: Did he ever indicate to you....
Q: Did any time did he raise his arm?
Objection! Sidebar! The screen now moves over to Cutts, who is leaning on his elbow with his hand over his mouth. We’re back on the record now.
Q: After he said, did you start to ask him questions?
She asked him what happened. He motioned with his arm around his neck and I didn’t know what that meant.
For the record, he raised his arm up and that’s what you’ve shown.
She asked where his son was and Cutts said at the house. She thought at Cutts’ house.
Q: Now are you still driving at this point in time? Did you make any stops?
They stopped at a truck stop. Myisha told Cutts she needed to use the bathroom.
Q: Where was Bobby?
A: When I came back he was on the side, near the back. I went back in the passenger side.
Q: What did Bobby do?
A: After a minute he did.
Q: At that point in time, did you see anything?
A: (missed part of her answer here) We got back in the truck and got on the highway.
Q: As you’re driving, did you recall seeing any signs?
A: Yeah. A sign that said, Kiagoha Falls. (I know I don’t have that right.)
Q: (missed the beginning of the question) About the landscape?
A: IT was real green, kinda like far out.
Q: As you continued to drive did you ask him questions.
I see Cutts and his attorney lean in to whisper.
Q: Had you ever been up that way before?
Q: After the stop did you stop anywhere else?
A: It was an open field.
Q: Was anyone around?
Q: What happened after your stop in that open field?
A: He got out of the truck to take her body out.
Q: Did you get out at that time?
A: (Missed the answer here.)
Q: Can you tell me what you saw?
A: In the body of the truck, her feet.
Q: Was there anything that prevented you from seeing more?
A: I didn’t want to see nothing else.
(I’m wondering if she’s crying now. Since she’s blurry, I can’t tell.)
Q: Did you see anything else besides those feet?
A: A few bags.
They were trash bags. The color was white.
Q: Did you see anything through those bags?
A: Some type of print. (snip) The color was burgundy.
Q: Was there anything covering the body?
A: Yeah. A blanket or something. She was wrapped in it.
Q: What did Bobby do with that body?
A: He took it off the back of the truck.
Q: Where did you go?
A: Back to the front seat.
Q: Did you watch where he went after that?
A: He was on the side and I really didn’t see him.
Q: What happened after he came back?
A: We drove to this, I don’t know what it is, some kind of building. (snip) He dropped the bags off in a dumpster.
Q: What are you doing at this point?
A: Trying to stay sane.
Q: Were you asking many questions?
A: (missed the answer)
Q: After he throws the bags into he dumpster, where do you go?
A: To this gas station.
Q: What happens there?
A: He sprayed the bed out. Then I went to the convenience store to buy cigs because I needed to smoke some cigs.
Q: He sprayed the bed out and then where did you go?
A: Went home.
When the driving back, Cutts called Jessie’s cell phone and the person he coached with.
Q: When he called Jessie’s phone did you hear what he said?
A: I can’t recall exactly what he said.
Q: Did you do anything with the cell phone?
A: I threw it out the window. It wasn’t his. It was pink.
Q: Did you know who’s it was?
A: Not his.
They stopped at another gas station to pick up mulch and went back to Cutts’ house. Cutts handed Myisha $100.
Q: Did he say anything?
A: He said he wished he could give me more.
Q: What happens as you get to his house?
A: He was getting ready for breakfast. He got a quick shower.
Q: After the shower, did you see him?
Q: How was he dressed?
A: In like pants and T shirt.
Q: Did he ask you anything?
Cutts asked if she could see marks on his chest…they looked vague. The skin on his finger was off because Jessie had bitten him! OMG, Jessie struggled.
Myisha stayed at the house while Cutts went out. While there, she called her daughter. Someone called while she was there, but she didn’t answer the phone.
Q: What did you do with those cigarettes?
A: Smoked them.
Q: In his house?
Cutts called and asked if anyone else had called her.
Cutts returns back to his house about 1 pm. His daughter was with him. Cutts then too Myisha home.
Q: What did you do when you go home?
A: Called Adrenia Snell.
Q: Did you see Bobby anymore that day?
Q: Did you speak to Bobby the next day?
A: Yes. Bobby called me. He said his baby’s momma’s missing.
Q: What did you think when he said that?
A: That he was gone. That he was crazy.
Q: Did you have occasion to get a call from the sheriff? Where were you at?
A: At home.
Q: Was anyone else there?
A: Yes. A full house. (She had company.)
Larry Davidson (Cutts cousin) picked up Mishap to take her to Cutts’ house after Myisha told LE she needed a half hour because she had company. Myisha has known Larry since grade school, and doesn’t have a car.
She got to Cuts’ house.
Q: What happened when you get to Bobby’s?
A: He still looked the same.
Q: Did you have a conversation with him? What did he tell you?
Cutts told her that the sheriff was coming to talk her. He told her to say that Jessie never came to pick up Blake and that he gave her $20 to watch Blake. That conversation took place on his front steps where no one else was around. While she was there, Bobby did not take any phone calls. She stayed at Bobby’s for a while.
When she left, she went back home and then the sheriff came. Larry stayed at Myisha's house while the sheriff was there. She told the sheriff the story Cutts gave her.
She never saw Cutts after that. Other LE interviewed her and she told them the same story.
Myisha turned herself in on the 24th because they were at her house everyday. She still had not told LE the truth at that time.
Q: On June 14th, why didn’t you tell the truth?
A: Because by that time, I didn’t want to talk about it.
Myisha identifies Bobby Cutts for the court.
Carletta, Davidson’s sister and Myisha were best friends. She would hang with the Cutts family a lot. She and Cutts spoke often.
Between the 13th and 14th, Myisha had to find a new home because she was being evicted.
When Cutts arrived at your house he appeared upset? Yes, I’d never seen him that way.
The camera pans the gallery to Patty Porter and the people sitting with her.
You never heard that Cutts used his position as LE to intimidate anyone or was violent with anyone? No.
When you got in the truck, you had no idea there was a body in the truck? No.
That your life would be turned upside down? No.
When the sheriff called, you knew what they wanted to talk to you about? I wasn’t sure what they wanted.
Myisha was shocked by the events and wanted to be out of the middle of all of it.
No more questions and no redirect. Jury has a few questions for Myisha.
(donchais: Not for nothing, this defense team appears poorly prepared and lacks any passion. Maybe they have already thrown in the towel and given up because they believe Cutts is guilty?
Sprocket: My online feed is terrible. I’m getting sound delay repeated about a minute later which is making it hard to get the testimony.)
Have you ever baby-sat for Blake at Cutts’ house? No.
Did you see the bit mark on the finger? Yes.
Myisha is excused!
(There is a short conference. The double sound is coming over again and it’s terrible! Just terrible connection. I think it’s OVER for Cutts. Just over! That was damaging and compelling testimony. But what was missing, were her clearly stating that Cutts told her that he strangled Jessie. The prosecution promised that in their opening. I wonder how they are going to get that in now.)
Next witness is Officer Michael Lombardi. He has been an officer for 14 years. He works with Cutts on the midnight shift for 3 years.
Lombardi saw Cutts at 6 am the morning Cutts dumped Jessie’s body. Cutts wasn’t working that day; he was driving his green truck. They waved at each other.
Q: How did you know his truck?
A: From working together and seeing his truck in the parking lot.
Q: Did you notice if anyone was with him?
A: No, I did not.
Q: Did you gesture to him to say hello?
A: I gave a little nodI believe.
Q: you said you went to breakfast?
Q: What time did you go?
A: About 6 am in the morning.
Q: Do you see the defendant in the courtroom today?
Q: Did you notice anything in the back of the truck?
There’s no cross! No further questions from either side and no jury questions. Donchais and I discuss the defense. I think the defense is incompetent. Donchais says, “Well, what are they really going to ask him?”
Next witness Adrina Snell, Myisha’s friend. She lives with her mother and 4 children ages 12, 8, 3 and 10 months. She’s known Myisha for 20 years. She’s known Cutts since Junior high.
On Wednesday she was at Myisha’s “kicking it” (partying, or “playing cards”). She was there all day and into Thursday, and she believes she went to bingo. She saw Cutts on the 14th, pulling up in the truck. They had a short conversation. It was 6:30 approximately.
No further questions from either side. There is one juror with a question.
Did you see anything in the back of the truck? No.
Snell is excused.
Afternoon recess called for 20 minutes. During the break I give donchais a call, and I say, “I can’t believe there is no cross of these witnesses!” And donchais replies, “Okay by me!” We comment again that this is one of the fastest, tightest trials we’ve ever seen.
During the opening, the prosecution said that they were going to prove that Bobby said he choked Jessie, and the prosecutors didn’t go after that testimony from Myisha. donchais thinks all the attorneys in this trial don’t appear to be very aggressive. We’re both quite surprised that didn’t force her into more testimony since they gave her a sweetheart deal.
Next witness Larry Davidson, Cutts’ cousin.
They went to high school together. He has known Myisha since 4th grade.
On June 17, Davidson picked Myisha up and brought her to Cutts’ house. He stayed for a half hour waiting for the sheriff and they left for Cutts’ house. They stayed about 45 minutes and then went back to Myisha’s house. Larry sat in the living room while she spoke with the sheriff. They went back to Bobby’s and then he took Myisha to work.
Bobby’s mother was at the Cutts house. And there was a lot of media at the house? Yes.
Did Myisha take a shower before she left? No.
You and Bobby, Carletta and Myisha would spend a lot of time hanging out together? Yes.
Myisha wanted to go to Bobby’s house; she wasn’t coerced in any way? No.
Did Myisha indicate any concern about speaking with the sheriff? Well, she wasn’t happy, but knew she had to do it.
Witness is excused.
Is what Myisha testified to on the stand the whole truth? If she helped physically in the removal of the body then the defense would have made her complicit. For her to only get two years for obstruction of justice. Come on. That’s a pretty damn good deal for her testimony. Damn. Fox is out and my sound on Newsnet5 is broken, choppy. I don’t even know what witness is on the stand. Hope donchais is getting this coverage.
Next witness William Moses
Cutts and Moses played ball together and then he went home, showered and then went to Champs. 8 pm, Jim and Bobby came in. They were still in uniform. They sat at the bar together.
Bobby was drinking beer. Bobby and Jim ate something. William left at 10-ish. Bobby had 2 beers at the most while I was there. They didn’t do any shots. William left and Bobby and Jim were still at the bar. William identified Cutts.
Next witness James Ladson. He was the one who played softball and went to Champs with Cutts and Moses.
After the game was over they talked about going to Champs. They went directly to Champs from the field. Bobby and Jim sat down and ordered beer. Jim doesn’t recall he or Bobby eating anything.
Bobby left around midnight. Bobby was on the phone a lot in the bar. Bobby also spoke to a few women at the bar.
The sheriff called to speak with Jim. He missed the call but picked up the message. He called Bobby first and Bobby said tell them the truth and then call me back.
Jim went to Bobby’s house and asked what was going on. He didn’t really say anything, he was just all-sad.
You had several phone calls with Bobby? Yes.
You wanted to know what was going on? Yes.
Bobby never told you to lie to LE? No.
How is Bobby as a father? He’s a great father. He’s good with the kids.
At Champs what time did you arrive? 8:30 and Bobby came in a few minutes after.
Did Bobby appear intoxicated? No.
Did he appear upset at any time? No.
No further questions.
Next witness Denise Hainet. She has a 12 year-old and is a registered nurse. She has known Cutts for two-and-a-half years. She met him at one of his side jobs; security at a nightclub. Good lord, she also had an affair with Cutts! She said the affair lasted off and on for two years. She knew Cutts was married, but didn’t know the status of the marriage.
They weren’t a couple; it was just a physical relationship.
She never knew Jessie or heard her name.
She was at Champs the night Jim, Bobby and Will were.
She got there at 10:30 pm. She saw Bobby when she got to the bar. Bobby was drinking beer. She saw him drink 2 beers. She was at the bar 'til 12:30 or 1 am.
Did Bobby leave at the same time as you did? I wasn’t really paying attention, but he was in his truck.
On Saturday she read the paper and saw the story about Jessie. She knew Blake’s name. She asked Bobby if that was Blake’s mom. He said yes.
The article said Jessie was pregnant, did you ask him about that? Not till that night. She asked if Jessie’s baby was his.
She identifies Cutts in court.
You are friends with Bobby and you have been romantically involved? Yes.
You’ve communicated with Bobby by phone and texting? Yes.
Did you and Bobby have an exclusive relationship? No.
Were you aware he was married? No.
You were aware he had children? Yes.
Did he appear to be interested in his children? Yes, very much so.
Q: Was this something you shared in common that you both had children?
Q: Had you ever met any of his kids?
Q: At some point did you become aware that there was some attention put on Bobby?
A: Yes. it was on the news.
After reading the paper, you called and asked him if Jessie’s baby was his. Yes, he said he couldn’t talk at that time.
When you went to Champs, that wasn’t prearranged, but you did call him and knew he was there. Yes.
No further questions.
Next witness Stephanie Hawthorne. (This is the one who aborted her baby.) She has two children and is married. She’s known Bobby for a year or so.
She got into a romantic relationship with Bobby in March 2007. They didn’t date. They would see each other at each other’s houses. They went to clubs together. They started having sex in April or May. They would see each other three times a week. They mostly met at Bobby’s house.
Did you know about Blake Davis? Yes.
Did you know about Jessie Davis? No.
Did you know about Kelly Cutts? Yes.
Stephanie became pregnant by Bobby. On June 13th she aborted the baby. She had told Bobby she was going to abort the baby.
Cutts wanted Stephanie to come to Champs; he called her. She said no.
He showed up at her house at 1 am and stayed till 2 am. She called him at 2:12 am. She doesn’t know where Bobby was during the call. She thought he was home.
On Friday she called Bobby and he said I can’t talk now because something has happened to Blake’s mom.
She learned Jessie was pregnant from the TV.
No more questions. Jury has a question.
Were you aware that Bobby Cutts was also seeing Denise? No
When you called Mr. Cutts after he left your residence did you ask him why he could only stay an hour? No.
Did he tell you where he was going? No.
Next witness will be called tomorrow. (Guess the testimony is too long to get into today.)
Wowzer! What a day! Tomorrow is going to be a touch and go day for coverage of the Mark Jensen Trial. We are not sure if we will have coverage of that trial for a few days, and hope it does get snowed out. I happened to drop in on the MyFoxCleveland chat room to see what a few of the trial watchers were saying.
Chat comments: (I did not correct the chat spelling errors.)
Guest: I am Stephanie mother in law warm up the chair for her too for what she has done to her family. I hope her cosmotogy business is runied.
Guest: Can I ask why these decent looking white girls allowed this guy to come over and take what he wanted when he wanted?? I am sure they could have found something better.
Guest: 5149 he was a charmer i guess
Nia: he made sure he got what he wanted.
Guest: Nia - these girls are 18, they are old enough to know better. HE isn’t anything.