Thursday, May 2, 2013

Kelli Jacobsen: Washington State: Prosecution wants to be allowed to introduce more than 1,000 pages of evidence it claims will discredit the defence's medical expert: Dr. John Plunkett.

STORY: "Nanny's texts say she was tired, exhausted," by reporter Geoff Folsom, published by the Tri-City Herald on May 1, 2013.

GIST: "Less than two hours before a Richland nanny called 911 to report a seriously injured toddler, she was texting and posting on Facebook that the fussy child was leaving her "tired and exhausted."
Starting at 10:30 a.m., Kelli A. Jacobsen began posting about how tired she was, adding "it's crazy."
Jacobsen is on trial in Benton County Superior Court for the death of 1-year-old Ryder Morrison, who died in surgery later that day from a head injury. Richland Police Detective Damon Jansen testified at Jacobsen's first-degree manslaughter trial Wednesday about what he found on the live-in nanny's Facebook account on June 22, 2011. After one of her Facebook friends commented on her posts, Jacobsen responded with this post at 11:45 a.m.: "It's because I stay up way too late and have to get up way too early," Jacobsen wrote. "Maybe if I could balance it out and sleep in, but u don't." A half-hour later at 12:12 p.m., she called 911 to report that Ryder was hurt. She later told a medic that he fell six inches, hitting his head, while climbing on a toy. Also Wednesday, Detective Robert Benson, who reviews cellphones, computers and other digital devices, said his work uncovered a text message exchange from a month before Ryder's death when the boy's mom, Tawney Johnson, asked Jacobsen about a bruise on Ryder's cheek on his face. Jacobsen texted back that the only bruise she knew of was on Ryder's nose. That exchange could add to the prosecution's effort to show Ryder was abused even before his fatal injury.........Scott Johnson attempted to make Jansen's police work look shoddy. He questioned why the detective didn't submit evidence to a crime lab for DNA testing that included baby wipes and clothing that Scott Johnson said might have been stained with blood. Jansen said testing those items wouldn't have made a difference in Ryder's case. "The labs are very, very backed up, so we don't want to send them thousands of items for one single case," the detective said.  Scott Johnson then showed Jansen a photo with at least six stains on the kitchen counter of the duplex where Ryder lived in the 1300 block of Williams Boulevard in Richland. "In this case, you wouldn't have had to have sent thousands of swabs, it would have been six," Scott Johnson told Jansen. "You didn't do it." After Superior Court Judge Vic VanderSchoor released jurors for the day, he ruled that Miller's office will have to limit how much of the more than 1,000 pages of evidence it will use to discredit the defense's medical expert, Dr. John Plunkett of Minneapolis. He gave prosecutors until noon today to decide what parts of the evidence it plans to actually use. "It seems to me that we ought to limit it to at least a couple hundred (pages)," VanderSchoor said. Scott Johnson said he received a box of the prosecution's evidence on Plunkett on Tuesday morning, not giving him time to review it. Had the judge not limited the evidence, Scott Johnson said the only other alternative would have been delaying the trial. Miller made clear he believes the evidence won't make the doctor look good. "Dr. Plunkett has been discredited so many times in so many courts across the country," Miller told the judge. Scott Johnson said Miller's thoughts on Plunkett were not relevant. "I don't think much of Dr. Feldman, but that's not the issue," he said, referring to the doctor who testified Tuesday that a massive head injury caused Ryder's death at a time when only Jacobsen was home. "The issue is the box. ... I can't get through it.""

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