Ex-Trooper's Murder Trial Comes to a Close
The trial of a former state trooper accused of killing his wife and two children hinges for the second time on blood splatter evidence and witnesses who insist he was with them in a church gymnasium when the killings occurred.
But closing arguments Monday in David Camm's six-week trial showed that the case has changed since the state appeals court overturned his 2002 murder convictions in the September 2000 shooting deaths.
New evidence emerged, more witnesses stepped forward and an alleged accomplice was convicted.
A jury in a separate trial last month convicted Charles Boney, 36, of three counts of murder and one count of conspiracy to commit murder. Boney, who was arrested after investigators linked him to the crime through DNA evidence, was sentenced to 225 years in prison.
"Let's make no mistake about it, Boney was part of this crime. Charles Boney has been dealt with. You're here to look at and examine the evidence against David Camm," Floyd County Prosecutor Keith Henderson said Monday during his closing arguments.
Henderson, who spoke to jurors in front of a digital projection of bloody crime scene photographs, returned often to testimony that all was not well in the Camm household and that Camm's behavior the night of the murders suggests he was involved in the murders.
Defense attorney Stacy Uliana accused prosecutors of manipulating the facts surrounding the shootings to fit their theory of Camm's guilt.
"It was built on the opinions of experts. Experts who can be wrong; experts who can be manipulated; and experts who can be bought," Uliana said. "The case is like a house built on a bad foundation. If you build a house on a bad foundation, cracks start to show."
Henderson pointed out to the jury that Camm, who left the state police four months before the deaths of his wife, Kimberly, and the couple's children, Bradley, 7, and Jill, 5, called his former colleagues in the state police instead of 911 to report the shootings.
"From the very beginning, David Camm controlled the investigation," Henderson said. "He knew that once those people who knew him came, that they would be sympathetic to him and they would treat him differently."
Camm did not testify during the trial, but his defense attorneys on Monday replayed for the jury a video of investigators questioning him soon after the killings during which he stomped his feet and yelled repeatedly, "I didn't do it."
The case against Camm, 41, drew national attention as his family fought to have the conviction overturned, finally winning in 2004 when the appeals court ruled that testimony about Camm's extramarital affairs had unfairly biased jurors.
Bart Montgomery, a juror in Camm's first trial who came from his home in Greenwood, Ind., to see the closing arguments, said his opinion on Camm's guilt has never changed.
"Everything we did was right," Montgomery said. "I don't feel I need to be vindicated."
Camm was serving a 195-year sentence in prison when his conviction was overturned.
Jurors were told that Boney was on trial but have not been told of his conviction.
Prosecutors allege that Camm met Boney in June 2000 shortly after Boney's release from prison after serving seven years for armed robbery and criminal confinement convictions and worked together to carry out the shootings.
Camm's attorneys have said Boney was solely responsible for the deaths of Kimberly Camm and the children inside the garage of the family's home near Georgetown, about 15 miles west of Louisville, Ky.
Prosecutors alleged in their closing arguments that Camm killed his family because his wife discovered he had molested their daughter. Camm was not charged with child molestation, and experts called by the defense disputed whether proof existed that the girl was ever molested.
Court documents also suggest that Kimberly Camm planned to leave her husband and that Camm was motivated to kill her to cash in on insurance policies worth nearly $300,000.
Defense attorneys have argued the Camm was playing basketball at his church the night of the murders and brought 11 witnesses to testify that they saw Camm there.
Donald Camm, David's older brother, said he hopes his brother's fight to prove his innocence will end soon.
The trial has taken a toll on his family _ mentally and emotionally, he said.
"We know where David was, and we've just had to continue to battle and battle and battle," he said. "If it weren't for the efforts of our family, Charles Boney would never have been found. The state police had closed this case."