Sunday, May 29, 2016

Lonnie Franklin, Jr., "Grim Sleeper," Penalty Phase, Day 9, Part I

l-r: Extra deputy, behind, Judge Kennedy's bailiff
Lonnie Franklin, Jr., center, Deputy Sargent Westphal, right
Photo Credit: Pool Camera, Al Seib, LA Times

UPDATE 6/10/16: correct date of attack to 4/17/74 for German victim
Prior post can be found HERE.
T&T Case coverage and Media Links HERE

Thursday, May 26, 2016
 I'm late. I usually try to get on the 9th floor by 8:30 AM. I walk in Dept. 109 right around 9:00 am.  All the parties are here. DDA Beth Silverman, DDA Marguerite Rizzo, their support staff DDA's Paul Pzrelomiec and Jamie Castro and the two female law clerks.

The DA's staff is no longer sitting directly behind the prosecution table. Today they are in the gallery. Over on the defense side we have Seymour Amster, Dale Atherton and Kristen Gozawa. Amster's mitigation expert is in the gallery along with her son.

There's quite a bit of press in the gallery, with a couple faces I've not seen before. There's the usual crowd, City News Reporter Terri Keith, Stephen Ceasar with the LA Times, his friend MW, ABC's Miriam Hernandez, sketch artist Mona Edwards, and Margaret with KNX radio. There's a male reporter from [I believe] KPCC and another male reporter I don't know who isn't getting the message that his phone needs to be completely off.

I note that there are two sets of couples in the gallery with stick-on ID badges on their lapels. These people are most likely the people's witnesses and their relatives. The German witness is here along with her husband, the two interpreter's with the DA's office and the court's official interpreter.

DDA Beth Silverman goes over to speak to Stephen Ceasar who is leaving his paper for greener pastures. DDA Silverman keeps asking him, "Why?"

Jane Robison from the DA's media division is here. The defendant is brought out. Judge Kennedy takes the bench and asks counsel if they are ready for the jury.

Amster isn't ready. He wants a hearing concerning the witness from Germany. Amster states that there has been something bothering him about this witness and it came together for him at 2 am this morning.

He says, "Last night I saw something of what has been bothering me in this case. ... as such for this witness ... we do believe that we need a 402 hearing about identification. ... We are very concerned that the parameters of ID is not going to be made and if it cannot be made in legally permissible grounds, and ... it cannot be unremedied by striking her testimony. ... I'm requesting a 402 hearing asking how she is going to make her identification. ... [Second?] And then the military observer be put on the stand. ... We don't feel that this witness should testify about victim impact in any way. We'd like a ruling on that prior to her testifying. ... Third, biasness. Bias. This is something that's been bothering me ... that finally I realized what it was very early this morning."

"This is an individual who was born shortly after World War II. ... [She was] raised .... potentially .... by parents who witnessed the use of government sanctioned death penalties in World War II, and what happened in Germany, [the German government?] they repudiated from any other government no matter what crime ... for other governments using the death penalty."

Amster is mentioning something about what the DA's office went through, or didn't go through, to obtain this witness. I believe he's stating that he doesn't believe that the DA's office went through official channels to contact the German government.

"I had a conversation with the German Consulate in the US and he personally represented to me that Germany would never aid a foreign government to aid another government to seek the death penalty.  ... I asked him to repeat that three times because I thought that was very important."

"A German citizen who's parents were around the Holocaust, ... coming to this country in seeking the death penalty against a black individual. ... We need to know what this reason is, for her to come to this country to help seek the death penalty. ... Nothing about the rape of an individual. ... that she's repudiating, what her government feels is the death penalty and we think it should be properly [vetted?] outside the presence of the jury."

The court turns to the people for their counter, "Miss Silverman?" DDA Silverman responds, "Your honor, counsel had an opportunity yesterday. He's know about this witness for five and a half years. He has only brought this up now, when the victims family are here, the media is here. ... If he thinks there's some issue of bias he can explore it in front of the jury. ... As I've said before, the victim is not going to be able to ID the defendant. ... That's why we're bringing in the people in the military to link him up. ... And, the idea is moot. She absolutely is entitled as a victim, to testify to victim impact evidence. ... There is no law to support his position. ... When he spouts off these opinions, which means I think, which is irrelevant to the record ... The law is contrary [to his opinion?] ... His conversations with the German government are of no consequence."

"She was told there was a trial going on in [the US?]. That she was part of a pattern that was ongoing since 1974. ... Counsel is putting forth his own beliefs and that, as a Jew, it is offensive to me that anyone would involve the Holocaust as counsel would in this case. ... To bring up the Holocaust, which was the extermination [of millions of Jewish people?] ... to somehow, liken that to what a serial killer has done in this country to someone ... How is that an issue in this case like this? Where a woman was so brutally assaulted in 1974, that she can't go anywhere without someone holding her hand? ... Where she was gang raped and treated like trash and this defendant only received 3.5 years for gang raping a witness."

Amster continues to argue. "The US military did not seek to increase his punishment. His co-conspirators received 4.5 years."  DDA Silverman quickly responds, "That's false!" Either Amster or the court replies not to interrupt. Amster continues to argue. "In no way is the defense stating that 3.5 years is appropriate. ... The US Supreme Court ruled that the death penalty is not an appropriate remedy for a rape. ... I'm not going to address the personal attacks on me as a Jew. ... And right in front of me was my father's scrap book. Right in front of me was my father's scrap book..."

Amster continues to argue about his father and what happened in Germany. That every single person [after the war?] was forced to look down at the bodies.  And not only Jews, but Gypsies and so many other ethnicities.

It goes on and on. I stop typing for a bit.

Amster states, "This witness should have been part of that education and somehow, she has ... counsel to turn her back [on her education? country?] and not chosen her [country's? position?]..."

DDA Silverman turns around and tells her witness to leave the courtroom so she doesn't have to listen to counsel's argument an accusations.

Amster states for the record,  "[Silverman] got up and ordered the witnesses to get up and ordered [them out]." DDA Silverman explains to the court, "I set the witness out because she's a victim and he's offending her." [Although the witness was in the gallery, the court's German interpreter was sitting beside her and interpreting for her.]

I believe that Amster is now asking for sanctions. Judge Kennedy responds, "Mr. Amster, what you are saying is offensive. It's certainly offensive to the witness. You are saying what her point of view is when you have no idea what her point of view is."

The court asks DDA Silverman, "On identification, have you inquired of the witness whether she recognized [Mr. Franklin?]" DDA Silverman responds that the people have not shown her any photographs. She adds, "I don't plan on asking her about making an identification."

I believe Amster is asking the court that they hear from the witnesses that are going to establish the ID, as an offer of proof. DDA Silverman tells the court that the records have been turned over to counsel years ago. One witness was in the US Army at the time in the internal affairs division. It was his responsibility to visit all the service men who were in custody. That was part of his job requirements. He did that on a regular basis with all individuals.

The court asks, "How is that person going to identify the defendant?" DDA Silverman states, "Through his observations, like any other witness." The court replies, "That's not clear to me." DDA Silverman goes into detail about the witness.

"He met with him and other individuals in custody. His responsibility was to attend the trial and ensure that all regulations were complied with according to the agreements between the US and Germany. He heard the victim testify. He heard the defendant testify. He transported the defendant's mother to court every day and translated for her and was her interpreter every day. He assisted in interpreting the proceedings for her. ... A second witness, ... was in charge of military personnel records. These were turned over to counsel ... indicating that the defendant with the same date of birth, home address as on his enlistment document with his [defendant's] signature. ... And because he was discharged because of this case. ... Fingerprints, signatures, ... all sorts of personal information including a document that has already been put into evidence that matches up to the same document that was in his possession."

Amster argues, "That is double and triple hearsay."

Judge Kennedy challenges, "Let's start with the military observer. Just because he was there doesn't get over the hearsay position. ... He can't testify to the contents of testimony. He can testify to observations." DDA Silverman tells the court, "The defendant got up on the stand and testified. It was in the [documents? conviction?]. ... He testified in English and our witness is English speaking."  The court tells the people, "But you still have to show that the person is Mr. Franklin. ... Are there records that show that Lonnie David Franklin was a charged person in this case which this military observer attended?" DDA Silverman answers, "Yes. ... His entire military record and the trial observer's report ... and his [observer] observations. ... It's part of his military file." The court counters, "Just because it's part of his military file doesn't mean it can come in."

DDA Silverman continues to proffer what her witnesses will bring in. "There are his documents in his name, his file, and his date of birth and that [the conviction in Germany] was the basis of his discharge. ... There are certified official documents. ... These are official records ... in exception to the hearsay rule ... and there's also circumstantial evidence. ... there are the documents in his personnel file that were the same [as those found in the search?]." DDA Silverman gives the number of the form. "It's a discharge document. It's in evidence. ... People's 209, a copy of the discharge papers. It says the same thing for discharge. Same name. Same date of birth. Same ID number that's on his enlistment."

Judge Kennedy tells the defense, "I think they are going to be able to establish identification."

[At some point through this combative exchange, my computer freezes and I have to resort to hand notes. I'm not sure where the following hand notes fall in the sequence of the mornings arguments. This is my best guess from memory where they fell.]

DDA Silverman tells the court that the German witness is entitled to testify under Factor B, to testify as a victim. She tells the court that the defense was given notice under Factor B, in the notice of aggravation, that he was given notice that this witness was going to testify.

Amster reads from the notice of aggravation.

Judge Kennedy states that Factor A related to the circumstances of the crime in this case. She adds, "I'm not going to preclude victim impact." The court asks the people about their witness, who is still outside in the hallway.  DDA Silverman responds, "I need a moment to speak to my witness ... she's upset because [of defense counsel statements]."  Amster interjects, "Well, we want notes on that." And then Amster laughs.

I've had the opinion, my opinion only, that Amster's laughter at odd times is nervous laughter. For the first time that I'm aware of, Judge Kennedy comments on it. She addresses Amster, "The fact that you're sitting here giggling right now is offensive [to me]."

[End of my handwritten notes.]

9:44 AM
In my opinion, I would not blame the victim if she didn't want to get up on the stand right now.

Deputy Sargent Westphal is in the well of the court. The countenance on his face, it's a dichotomy of expressions at the same time.

There are several new victim family members in the gallery that I haven't seen before. All the Anderson family that I've seen over the last several weeks are here.

9:51 AM
Judge Kennedy retakes the bench. She asks counsel if they are ready for the jury. Judge Kennedy's bailiff is now in the well of the court by the jury box. He has a big smile on his face and greets the jurors as they pass. The prosecution team stands for the jurors. The defense counsel remain seated.

Judge Kennedy greets the jury. "I'd like to welcome back all our jurors and alternates. I apologize for keeping you waiting."

The people call the woman German witness.

A dark-haired woman and her husband take seats in the witness stand. The woman's husband is seated to the left, closest to the court. He puts his arm around her and holds onto her. Also in the witness box is the German interpreter.

[Although the witness has chosen to be identified by a first name and an initial to protect her identity, T&T has decided not to publish the first name or initial. The name she provided can be found in other media reports. Local ABC 7's report with sketches by Mona Edwards. LA Times Stephen Ceasar's report, People Magazine's Christine Pelisek's report, MyNews LA Hillary Jackson's report, and local KPCC's report.]


Mam, where do you reside?
In Bavaria.
Have you ever been to the US before?
Did you fly out here to testify in this case?
Can you calculate and tell us how old you were in April 1974?
And where were you living in that time?
And is that in Germany?

I want to direct you attention back to April 17, 1974. Do you remember that night?
And that night, were you on your way home when something happened?
And where were you coming from?
From my [boy?] friends.
And where did that person live?
In [F..?].
Is that in Stuttgart?
In order to get home that night, were you waiting for some type of transportation?
Were you waiting at a certain location?
Yes. ... In front of the train station.
Was that in Stuttgart?
Was there anyone there at the location with you or were you alone?
Were there any other people out there near you while you were waiting?
I cannot recall.

As you were waiting did someone approach you?
A car.
And where did the car approach? ... How close to you did the car come? ... Motioning with her hands, about a foot, foot and a half to two feet.

Defense: So stipulate.
And did the car stop?

Amster asks to approach. DDA Silverman responds, "Unless there's an objection...." Amster asks the court to approach again. They are at sidebar. I overhear DDA Silverman say something, interrupting Amster. Judge Kennedy addresses DDA Silverman, "Stop. I'll give you a chance. Stop."  Even at sidebar, Judge Kennedy is having to tell the parties to stop interrupting each other. When the sidebar is over, Amster goes over to his mitigation specialist to say something.

You said there was a vehicle that drove up close to where you were standing, is that correct?
What  do you remember is the next thing that happened?
They asked me something.
The people inside the vehicle?
Did you talk with the individuals inside the vehicle?
I cannot recall.
Did you see how many individuals were inside?
Did you know these individuals?
Had you ever met them before? ... Were they strangers to you?
Were they female or a mix there of?
Were you able to tell what race or ethnicity?
Yes. African American.

How many of them tried to speak to you?
I cannot recall exactly.
Do you recall what they were trying to say to you?
Yes. I believe they were asking for an address for directions.
Did you approach the vehicle in order to respond?
I cannot recall.
What was the next thing you can recall happening?
Somebody grabbed me and pulled me into the vehicle.
When you were inside the vehicle, could you clearly see that there were three African American men inside the vehicle?
Yes. ... A man held a knife to my throat.
Can you show us where on your own body?

She puts her left hand up under her chin, against her neck. Her hand motion is described for the record.

Can you describe for us the length of that knife? Was it a small knife, a large knife? ... Motioning with her hands what looks to be about a foot.
Do you know what type of knife it was?
No. I cannot recall.
The kind of knife that you might see in a kitchen or a butchers block?
A knife ... but with ... yes.
Was anything said to you when this knife was up to your throat?
Kill you.
Did you take that as a threat to kill you?
Yes. I was in fear of my life.

Judge Kennedy: Were the words said in German or English?
In English.

Were you afraid?
You didn't know the men and you were in a car with three men?
With a knife to your neck?
What was the next thing that happened?
They drove off and some time later they turned into a field.
You said they drove off. Did you know the direction the car was headed?
In the direction of Ludwigsburg Square.
Approximately how long did the car travel before they pulled off?
Half an hour, I think.
During that time, ... were the three man talking at all?
I cannot recall.
Did you hear them say anything in particular?

You said at some point after about a half hour, they drove off into a field?
Was that a field where there were any phones close by?
And people?
And street lights?
Was that an isolated, or ... what one might say is a remote area?
What was the next thing you can remember happening?
I was raped by all three.
They came to a stop at some point?
Did anyone get out of the vehicle ... did they get out?
I cannot recall.
Did that take place inside the vehicle?

Her husband holds her a little tighter. The witness rubs her face and then nods her head to something her husband said.

How long did that go on for that rape by three men?
The rest of the night.

There was a small murmur or gasp from the audience. Then I heard the words, "Oh my God," from someone in the rows in front of me. Amster asks to approach. The bailiff brings over a glass of water for the witness. A sidebar is called.

10:13 AM
Side bar is over. Judge Kennedy reminds the people in the audience to not audibly respond to the answer or the questions asked by the attorneys.

When you say that the rapes by these three men went on the entire night, did each of the three men have sexual intercourse with you?
Was that against your will?

There are stern faces on the jurors.

Not to belabor the point, but when you say sexual intercourse, ... that each of the three men placed their penis inside your vagina?
Did you suffer any type of injury during the sexual assault?
Yes, on my abdomen.
What type of injury did you suffer?
As far as I can recall, there were cuts.
Do you know....?
I believe from the knife.
During the course of this night did you believe that you would be able to survive?

Some jurors look down at their laps.

Did you play along after the sexual assault in order for the men to take you back to the city?
Yes. [She sighs.]
By the time you got back to your home that night, was it still dark outside?
When you got home that night, what did you do?
I took a bath.
I felt dirty.

It appears the witness bites her lip.

Do you recall what time it was when you got home?
No I cannot recall.
What did you do the next morning?
I went to the police.
And you told the police what happened?
Did you describe the individuals to the police, and subsequently did you identify with the police all three of your attackers?
Subsequent to that, did you seek medical treatment?
No. I did not have any help.
Did you seek any type of psychological counseling?
No, because my mother did not make any attempts and I was too young to do it by myself.

In November and December 1974, were you requested to attend a trial?
Did that take place in a German court?
And were the three men who raped and kidnapped you present during that trial?
Did you identify each of the men?
And at that trial, did you also describe in detail what each man had done?
Did you watch as each of your attackers testified at that trial?
Objection! Overruled.
Do you recall there being a family member of any of the three men who raped you present during the trial?
Objection. Sustained.

Can you tell us, what impact, if any, that experience, the kidnapping, the gang rape, what experience that has had on your life?
I'm still afraid to this day when it gets dark. ... I do not go outside by myself when it's dark. If I'm at home alone, I turn on the lights in the entire house if my husband is not home. And we got a large dog. ... And my entire family, my daughter and grandchildren suffer from it because I passed [my] fear onto them.
Objection [to last sentence]. Sustained as to daughter and to other family.

How has this impacted how you deal with your own daughter and grandchildren?
Yes, they are taken by car everywhere. They are picked up ... and the big one is 19, and she's still being driven to school and picked up. And it's still the same with my own daughter.

Her granddaughter is 19.

And is that because of your fears of what happened to you?
Yes because I did tell my daughter about it and she got afraid.
And you said you got a big dog?
Yes. ... I do not feel secure without a dog when I'm home alone.
What type of dog did you get?
A Newfoundland.
So a big dog?

Direct is finished. Amster states he does not want to cross on these issues. He asks to court to approach.

10:22 AM
We take a three minute sidebar. Cross examination proceeds.

Mam, at any time had you been contacted by a representative of the German government concerning these proceedings?
The general police in [BG?].
And what inquiry, if any?
Whether I would be willing to give my statement in this trial.
And when they contacted you, did they acknowledge that they were representative of a government agency in Germany?
I don't understand. ... They were part of the police authority in Germany.
Did any individual associated with any German government ever contact you in regards to these proceedings?
Yes. ... The police in [LUD?] wrote me a letter. ... That there was an inquiry from the US whether I would be willing to give my statement in these proceedings.

Amster tells the court, "I think the next question I can ask at sidebar first." There is a minute sidebar.

In the letter did it state in any way your assistance was being requested for the government or anyone associated with the US to obtain the death penalty in America?
What did the letter say?
[More or less it] just stated, it was asked if I was willing to give my witness statement in this case. Because this happened to me. Because it happened to me and there might be some connection. ... And because the letterhead said [LUD?] Police Department and there was a phone number.
And so you believe it was the police department in [LUD?]?
And you were directed to the person who signed the letter? ... When you talked to someone at the police department concerning the letter, correct?
What did they say to you?
Objection. Hearsay. Sustained.
As a result of talking to someone in the police department that helped you to determine if you should cooperate to come to America to participate in this proceeding or not?
Were you directed to talk to anyone else after you had....
Objection. Sustained.

Did you ever talk to any other German official besides whom you mentioned after you called the German police department?
Yes. An interpreter contacted me by email ... by the US, ... trying to find out if I would be willing to get my statement.
I'm interested in German Government officials so my question is ...

I believe the witness interrupts because she remembers something.

Only... [I] forgot that ... I forgot. Someone from City Hall. ... He inquired whether he could give out our email address because he had a request from US authorities ... LAPD, to give our [email] address. I asked if this really came from US authorities. ... He confirmed that it came from the LAPD and he confirmed that it did. So I said he could give out our address. ... They were able to connect this old case with this.
Any other German officials, have you been contacted, other than [that]?
Nothing further.  ... Oh wait. One second please.
When did you learn that this was a death penalty case and from whom?
Objection. Facts not in evidence. [Miss ruling.]
Were you aware that this was a death penalty case?
Who did you learn that from?
From the media.
The media where?
Internet. ... Los Angeles Times ... and the media at home.
So, prior to testifying you've been following this case in the news?
Yes. I was interested in it but I had already decided to come.
So you had decided to come knowing that the Government of the State of California is seeking the death penalty in California?
Oh. Nothing further. Oh, wait. Did anyone associated with the German government tell you this was a death penalty case?
Did you [learn?] from anyone associated with the German government this is a death penalty case?
Objection. Sustained.
Nothing further.

The court asks if there is any redirect. There's no redirect. The witness is excused. The court says, "Thank you very much for coming. You are free to go."

Amster asks for a sidebar before the next witness.  Several reporters leave the courtroom, possibly to interview the witness. Most of the mainstream press leave [People, KNX, etc.].

10:37 AM
Side bar over. DDA Silverman presents the next witness.


Did you fly out here from your home state in Florida/
Are you now retired?
Retired military. ... I was active during [9?] years. Twenty-one years in the reserves but still in private practice as a lawyer.

He was with US Army Judge Advocate [General - JAG] branch. Judge Advocate Core.

What does that entail?
It depends on where you're assigned. It could be any number of duties. You could be defending ... you could handle claims against the government ... you could give assistance to servicemen and their families.

Were you a lawyer when you went into the military?
Back to 1974. Where were you assigned?
In 1974, I was assigned to the 7th Core headquarters in Germany.
How long were you stationed in Germany, in Stuttgart?
I was stationed there for about 9 months before moving to Munich.

He was  JAG officer. A captain, oh-three [03].

What was the job [of] Judge Advocate General in the 7th Core as an International Affairs Officer I mean?
I dealt with the German government. Whether the US or Germany would take jurisdiction with cases involving servicemen [in incidents? charges?] outside the base. ... I also visited US servicemen who were imprisoned either awaiting trial or after trial. ... Each month, [I was] required to visit each such person within my jurisdiction which was southwestern Germany. ... In addition to that ...

Let me ask you something. You would deal with German authorities involving crimes involving service men?
NATO agreement with Germany had jurisdiction against servicemen who committed civilian crimes. ... My request would be to waive jurisdiction ... to wave and allow the Army to take jurisdiction. ... Because they [Germany] thought the Army was taking more lenient [punishments?] they took jurisdiction more.

His responsibility was to contact Dr. Beckstein [sp?] to determine who would take jurisdiction.

Were you well [acquainted] with Dr. Beckstein, [as] the head prosecutor in Germany?
Yes. I had routine contact with him.
Did you attend several trials?
Was that also your duty?
As the International Affairs Officer in Stuttgart, but also to attend the trial. ... Under the Army regulations ... in effect at that time, I was required to attend, or another JAG officer was required to attend any such trial.

He covered the areas of southwest Germany, Switzerland and Austria.

Now in terms of your responsibilities, with respect to attending any trials, attended trials, did you also have responsibilities to what you were supposed to do subsequent to this trial?
Under general [guidelines?] I was responsible to attend the trial and also required to prepare a trial report. Although I attend trial and speak reasonable German at the time, but not any more. ... I would have an interpreter from my office who would be with me at those trials.

In terms of US military obligations, if they had a serviceman who was being tried in Germany, were there attorney's who were provided?
Objection. Sustained.
Were you in contact with English speaking individuals who represented all of the servicemen?
Objection Side bar.

10:38 AM
The court states that they are going to take their 15 minute break for the morning.

Amster is having an animated conversation with Judge Kennedy's bailiff over at the clerk's desk. Earlier, it was the bailiff who "shushed" the audience.

11:06 AM
Defendant is brought out. We're back on the record. The witness retakes the stand. We're ready for the jury. I note that Detective Dupree must have left the courtroom with the German witness and her support group of interpreters.

Continuing direct examination of Frank Pyle, by DDA Silverman

Mr. Pyle, we were discussing not only did you visit all the US servicemen that were in custody, you also attended all the trials and prepared formal reports for each ... those were the scope of your duties?
My job was to assure they had what was what we would call a fair trial, that it met the agreements with shared forces agreements and German law.
If Germany chose to prosecute, did that foreclose the military then from doing any type of military proceeding?
Correct. It would appear to be double jeopardy.
Did you visit [Mr. Franklin] between April and November multiple times in 1974?
It was my job. I don't specifically remember Mr. Franklin.
Objection. [Miss ruling]

So you visited every serviceman in custody, including a gentleman named Lonnie Franklin?
Objection your honor, Sidebar.

11:12 AM
Questioning continues.

Each man you visited in custody, did you document their [name] date of birth, [identification number]?
Yes. That would have been identified to me before I visited the serviceman.
Do you know what the date of birth is, whose trial you attended and visited in custody?
Objection, foundation. Sustained.
Do you have any recollections of [the date of birth]...
Objection. Sustained.
With respect to the individual ... did you visit [M?] prison between April 19 and June 21 of 1974?
I don't believe so.
What is [M?] prison?
Objection relevance.

Did you visit Sondheim Prison between April 19 and June 21 of 1974?
Every month.
That's a German, high security prison?
It was high security because of the Baader-Meinhof terrorist group in Germany.
Did you visit someone by the name of Lonnie David Franklin, Jr., at the prison?
Objection. Sustained.
As the International Affairs Officer, were you responsible, as the International Affairs Officer for writing a letter to the local German prosecution regarding the prosecution of a certain individual?
[Miss answer or if there was an objection.]

Did you write a letter requesting jurisdiction with respect to a certain trial requesting jurisdiction over a certain individual?
Who was that individual?

Judge Kennedy calls parties to sidebar. It's a very nuanced part of the law. The prosecution has to be able to show identity by laying the proper foundation and, I believe, without leading the witness. The foundation must be laid from the ground up.

11:18 AM
Sidebar over.

Did you visit someone at Sondheim Prison between June 21 and November 11, 1974 related to the trial that you attended in November and December?
Objection, hearsay! Overruled. 

Who was that individual?

He identifies the defendant, Lonnie Franklin.

How did you know that person was Lonnie Franklin? ... Did you write a letter to Dr. Beckstein requesting jurisdiction for the crimes that Mr. Franklin was in prison for?

I believe there are more objections. Judge Kennedy asks her own question. "Did the US military assert jurisdiction over the case?" Mr. Pyle answers, "The German authority chose jurisdiction."  DDA Silverman continues with her questioning.

There were also two other men who were also included in your order request? ... Who were the other individuals that ... the ones you mentioned that you visited? ... How many individuals in connection with the defendant that you also visited?

Objection. Sustained.

Did you eventually attend the trial of the defendant along with others in Stutgartt Germany?
And when did that trial take place?
It took place in November and December 1974. ... There were actually eight hearings.
Eight days of the hearing? 
Yes. It was not eight consecutive days. It was partial days.
How many individuals were on trial there?
And did that also include the defendant, Lonnie Franklin, Jr.?
And what type of court was this
It was a German criminal court ... [a regional court].
You said that was some type of a regional court?
In Florida, it would be [like] the circuit court, that would be trying felonies as well as other large civil cases.

Did you attend the proceedings as required?
I was there each day, along with my interpreter.
Did you watch as multiple witnesses testified?
Was one of them a woman by the name of [German witness first name and initial].
Objection, sidebar.

DDA Silverman asks, "What's the legal objection?" Judge Kennedy tells the parties she will see them at sidebar.

11:25 AM

Sidebar over.

You said you had your own interpreter?
Karen Ritchie. ... [She] worked in the International Affairs office where I was the chief .... and she spoke German.

I believe there may have been another objection and the court orders the people to turn the lectern over to the defense for voir dire questioning.

Seymour Amster questions the witness.

Were you fluent in German?
At the time I spoke German but I'm not fluent anymore.
What was the name of the interpreter?
Karen Ritchie.
Were you qualified to determine any of her competency to interpret German?
There were other interpreters at the trial who interpreted for the defendants.

Please just answer my question. You did not have.... Your honor, can we approach? ... The prosecutor is making hand motions that the jury can see. ... I ask that the prosecutor be sanctioned. Judge Kennedy appears to be fed up at this point and tells counsel, "Both of you, just stop it! Just sit there and don't do anything!"

Amster continues questioning.

What personal knowledge did you have that Ms. Ritchie was competent to translate German?
Personal knowledge. ... I was dealing with her on a personal basis.

Judge Kennedy asks, "Had she translated for you prior to that date?" 

At that point, probably three [or four months before] the trial.
But you did not have the ability yourself [to determine] the accuracy of her interpretation? ... You could not validate her accuracy?
I am not fluent in German.

Amster states, "No further voir dire questions." The court asks if the people have any other questions on this point.  DDA Silverman resumes her questioning.

You said there were other interpreters to assist. Approximately how many?
According to my report, three.

Judge Kennedy asks, "You refreshed your memory and now recall there were three?" [Miss answer.] DDA Silverman resumes questioning.

And based on the interpretation through various sources somebody by the name of [German woman's name]. I believe the court intervened and DDA Silverman moved onto another question.

As to this Ms. Ritchie, did she interpret for you in court or did she do other interpretations for you as part of her duties for the court? 
She did receive documents from German and translated them from German to English.

Judge Kennedy tells counsel, "Okay. Lets go to sidebar."  A reporter's phone goes off.

11:32 AM
Sidebar over.

Did you watch a woman by the name of [German woman's first name and initial] state her name and testify to the crime that occurred and the two other individuals who were on trial?

Objection. [Sustained?]
Did you watch a woman get on the stand and state her name to be [German woman's first name and initial] at the trial.
Objection. Compound again. Hearsay.

Judge Kennedy states, "She may not have use the word [German woman's first name and initial]. She may have used her entire name. We do that to protect the ID of victims of sexual assault ..."

Amster states they [the defense] are not going to publish her name. There is more back and forth between counsel. DDA Silverman continues.

Did a woman [named __], with a last name that started with [__], testify at this trial?
And again, was that at the same time the defendant along with two other individuals were being tried in a German court?
And did miss [German woman's first name and initial] articulate at that time the extent of the participation of each of the individuals?
Objection. Sustained.
Did the defendant himself testify at this trial?
Did he state his name on the record at this trial?
Did you also, through your conversations with the defendant, [with the visits at the jail/prisons?] document his date of birth, his home address and his identification number?
Objection. Sidebar.

11:36 AM
During your conversations with the defendant, did he provide you with his background information?
I don't know that he specifically did.
Were you aware of what the defendant's rank was in the military?
Objection! Sustained.

DDA Silverman asks to approach for sidebar.  It's over.

Were you in contact with any of the defendant's family during the trial?
Objection. Over ruled.
Who was that?
Objection, hearsay. [Over ruled?]
That was the defendant, Lonnie Franklin's mother.
And what type of contact did you have?
She flew over during the summer. ... I used to pick her up and take her to the trial.

Judge Kennedy asks the defendant, You picked her up and [took her?] to court?" The witness answers, "I picked her up every time if not almost every time."

Did you provide translation for her during the trial?
Objection. Sustained.
In terms of the report that you created, based on your required duties, did that [report] become a part of the defendant's military file?
Objection. It's irrelevant. [Miss ruling.]

No further questions from the people. There is no cross examination of this witness and he is excused. The people call Lamar Whatley. The witness is sworn in and takes the stand.


How is it you're employed sir?
I'm [?] record supervisor and I'm resources command for [the] Fort Knox, Kentucky, records facility there.
How many people do you supervise?
Maybe 40, 30, something like that.
And what is it that you do as a supervisor of records custodian?
We maintain all the records for the Army.
US Army?
US Army, yes mam.

The witness has been employed his whole life with the Army either as a soldier or a civilian.  So about 32 years employed and working with army records.

At some point, were you also stationed in Germany?
I've been stationed in Germany two different times.
Were you stationed near Stuttgart ... Was that where the army headquarters [were?]?
Headquarters for my particular unit.

Headquarters that you're referring to, that's where all the records were maintained for servicemen serving in Germany?
Eventually were those records .... Do you know based on what you do on a daily basis, where records are maintained abroad?
[Miss answer.]
Are you actually familiar .... that you've been doing this for 32 years, for [where] records are prior to when you came into the military [record keeping?]?
Yes mam.
Objection, leading. [Miss ruling.]
Tell us how you are aware records are [kept?] ... and are maintained dealing with individuals in the military?
I'm a resource commander. I'm responsible for all the records in the army. I have to know where they are prior and where they are now.

He's a supervisor as an army soldier records branch.

What are your duties?
Ensure that soldier's Army documents are put in here correctly by the people who do that.

He ensures that the right records are in the right place.

If there is a public records request for records, is that something that comes through [your office/department?]?
There's a different process for public records request.
FOIA request?
FOIA goes through FOIA officer first.
Eventually, everything comes through you?
Where are military records maintained?
Depends on when the individual separated [from the army].

Those who separated prior to 2002, those records are in a national personnel records center in St. Louis, Missouri. Amster asks for a sidebar. The court says no sidebar. Amster tells the court he knows there was someone talking in the audience. The court addresses the audience, ordering them not to talk to each other and not to make noise. "Do I make myself clear?" The court adds. "I see heads nod."  DDA Silverman continues.

In terms of the records that are maintained in St Louis or Washington, D.C., or electronically, if you get a request for records, are you able to [answer requests?] for each of those records from those locations?
Yes. ... Not all [initial] records requests have to come through his department.
The records that are maintained by the US Army, are those the type of records that are created by the normal course of business, personnel documents ... [etc?]?
That is correct.
Are they created by the army personnel to document certain events?
That is correct.
Did you review the records by a certain person by the name of Lonnie Franklin, Jr.?

A sidebar is called. I'm not sure, but it's probable that the court excused the jury for the morning, based on what the court said in the next paragraph.

11:49 AM
The court addresses counsel. Normally I would tell lawyers to work this out but I don't want world war three. You're going to have to do it in a professional method. I want both of you to stop it. I'm sick and tired of it. ...

[I believe Amster is speaking now. I'm sorry my notes are not clear.] The people can establish the ID of the records and then there's the issue of hearsay as to what is admissible and what is reliable. And then they have their exhibit as to what they can allow in. What we are objecting to is any summary by this witness ... they ... then the court will make a ruling ... Judge Kennedy replies, "that's what they pay me the big bucks for."

Judge Kennedy is discussing the people's witness who attended the trial. Your gentleman who went to the trial and made a report, and that's something that you [defense] probably don't want in. The people state they laid their foundation. Judge Kennedy agrees that the foundation has been laid. The defense comments on the points that the people wanted to get out of that witness. I believe it's Amster who complains that it's one thing to make legal objections and it's another thing to make extemporaneous comments in front of the jury. Amster thinks that if the people want more than the name ....

DDA Silverman states, "Counsel [defense] has copies of all the documents I plan on putting on documents ... to put on that crime." Judge Kennedy rules, "I'm going to tell you right now if that report ... of that report ... the fact that it's in there [in the personnel file] is not hearsay."

Amster cites a case he is relying on regarding records. He argues that the witness [on the stand now] any information that the parties have heard so far is based on the records. He's not testifying on personal knowledge, he's testifying on the records. He argues that it's hearsay and that it doesn't have the proper hearsay section attached to it.

My notes are not clear on who it is that reads section 1280 of California's Evidence Code. I believe it's DDA Silverman, but could have been Judge Kennedy.  Amster is arguing the "trustworthiness" of the documents in Franklin's personnel file. It's not clear in my notes if Judge Kennedy made a ruling before lunch.
Continued in Day 9, Part II .....