Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Sentencing: March 22

John Healy will be sentenced to 25 years-to-life in prison Thursday, March 22, at 9:30am. At that time, we expect to hear statements from members of the Corr family. Healy's attorney indicated that Healy himself wishes to say a few words as well.

That day, we intend to post developments on this blog as we did throughout the trial. Please keep checking back for updates.

And now, a word of appreciation. Thank you for relying on this blog for trial updates and details. Thank you, also, to the many people who posted encouraging comments or approached us personally about this work. It was certainly a new and exciting step in the way we deliver news. We look forward to many more "blogging" opportunities in 2007.

If you wish, please send additional thoughts or suggestions to


Monday, January 22, 2007

John T. Healy: Guilty On All Counts

4:35pm. Assorted family members, friends, police officers, investigators, and attorneys lingered in the courtroom for roughly an hour following the verdict. Their attention will soon move toward the trials of two other suspects (Marion Pegese and Robert Ward, both currently in custody), but there is no clear timetable on when those trials will commence.

Post your thoughts on the verdict by clicking on "comments" below.

Also, check to watch an impressive array of video from today's proceedings.

Murder: Guilty

3:31pm. John T. Healy has been found guilty of murder in the 2nd degree.

-There was little audible reaction from the gallery. There are, however, many tears from members of the Corr family.

-Sentencing: Thursday, March 22nd at 9:30am.

-Members of the gallery clapped when Healy was escorted from the courtroom. He appeared to clap his hands back at them.

-3:39pm. There are many hugs and handshakes to go around. Quiet satisfaction from the family and NHPD officers to the prosecutors.

Robbery: Guilty

3:29pm. John T. Healy has been found guilty on all 18 robbery counts. Healy sits in silence.

Verdict Reached

3:20pm. A verdict has been reached. The courtroom is being filled.

3:25pm. The ceremonial courtroom is filled with approximately 100 people: Members of the Corr family, New Hartford Police Officers, witnesses who testified during the trial, and many others.

The jury has not yet entered. Three armed guards surround Healy. Others guard the exits.

Keep it here...

Waiting It Out...

2:47pm. Deliberations continue. Family members are passing the time outside the courtroom by talking, playing cards, or reading quietly.

-Jurors asked to review certain items of evidence, including cell phone records.

NEWSChannel 2's Coverage Plans for the Verdict

Here is a look at NEWSChannel 2's plans for coverage once a verdict is reached:
  • When a verdict is reached, we will send out a NEWSChannel 2 Alert to those who have signed up for the "breaking news" group. This message will be sent about 15 minutes before the verdict is announced in court. If you haven't signed up click here:

  • NEWSChannel 2 will cover the verdict LIVE on WKTV when it happens. Vic Vetters will anchor a special report.
  • Andy Jenks will continue to blog from inside the courtroom during the reading of the verdict.
  • As soon as the verdict is announced we will again send out a NEWSChannel 2 Alert to the "breaking news" group.
  • We will post video of the verdict being announced in court on This should be on the site within 10 minutes of the announcement.
  • NEWSChannel 2 will also post extended video clips with reaction from the key players in this trial.

This is our game plan as of right now. We will keep you posted if any changes are made to the plan.

Jerry Walsh - WKTV

Deliberations Begin

1:19pm. The jury retires to the deliberation room. It is unclear if the (now) eight women and four men will break for lunch or move immediately into deliberations.

-Wittman (after consulting with Healy) consents to allowing the remaining three alternates to leave. From this point, if a juror cannot complete the deliberations, the process will continue without a replacement.

-When there is a verdict, it will be read in the ceremonial courtroom across the hall. NewsChannel 2 also intends to broadcast the verdict live when it is read.

We will remain in court to bring you the latest developments on this blog as they occur. Scroll down to read through today's proceedings and click "comments" to post your thoughts.

The Murder Count

1:03pm. Murder in the second degree. Dwyer: "When in the course or commission of robbery in the first or second degree, or immediate flight therefrom, that person causes the death of a person other than one of the participants."

-Healy as a blank expression on his face.

-There are 231 exhibits. While deliberating, the jury has the right to view each and every one of them. They are stacked in boxes and folders here in the courtroom.

The 18 Robbery Counts

12:37pm. Dwyer (reading from a script): "Mere presence at the scene of a crime does not, by itself, make a defendant criminally liable for that crime. You must find 1) that he aided those other persons to engage in that conduct and 2) that he did so with the state of mind required for the commission of that offense."

-Definition of robbery: "Forcible stealing." "When such person takes or withholds property from the owner of the property."

-12:45pm. Six counts, robbery in the first degree (involving the six Lennon's owners/employees): "When a person forcibly steals property, and in the course of the crime or immediate flight therefrom, that person (or another participant) causes serious physical injury to any person not involved in the commission of the crime."

-12:51pm. Six more counts, robbery in the first degree (same as above, but include "The defendant, or another participant, was armed with a deadly weapon.")

-12:57pm. Six more counts (for a total of 18), robbery in the second degree. "That John Healy, or by acting in concert with others, forcibly stole property, and was aided in doing so by another person actually present."

The Charges/The Laws

12:16pm. Before deliberations begin, Judge Michael Dwyer (reading from a script) must now instruct the jury on the laws that apply to this case. Healy is paying attention. He leans on his desk. Elbows on table. Arms crossed.

-Dwyer: "You should be guided by your memory of the evidence. You do not have to accept the arguments of the lawyers."

-12:29pm. This part of the trial is formality, but it is a lengthy one. Dwyer: "It must appear that the inference of guilt is the only one that can be reasonably drawn from the facts."

In the meantime, post your thoughts by clicking on "comments" below.

"We got mountains of evidence."

12:03pm. Hameline's summation continues...

-"They came like invaders, and take [the merchandise] to Philly, where they could sell it. They had their faces covered, handguns, bags, they took systematic control of Lennon's."

-"Even if Joe Corr knew what was going to happen that night, he probably would've put his uniform on and gone to work. But we're not here to praise Joe, not here to make him a hero."

-12:09pm. On the suspects: "They put in motion a series of events that led to Officer Corr's death. It's about causation, foreseeability."

-Hameline: "We got John T. Healy. He's surrounded by proof. If felony murder doesn't apply in this case, then it doesn't apply in any case." (Long pause).

Hameline is finished at 12:14pm.

"Custody is not an issue."

-Richardson crashed the car because he was attempting to avoid an apparent roadblock by turning right onto Clinton St., but the car was moving too fast and ended up at the Byrne Dairy.

11:42am. Hameline: "These clowns came from Pennsylvania. They just crashed their car. They don't know where the hell they are! Richardson gets to the woods. He's waiting to see if Healy's going to make it."

-"Custody is not an issue. He was squirming and wiggling when the shot went off." "He cannot absolve himself from liability even if he was in total custody and control."

-11:53am. "Their greed overrode concern for anyone else. And that's why we have a felony murder statute."

-After Hameline reviews cell phone records, he says, "He's [Healy] not just along for the ride. He's a mover and a shaker in this case."

-"He had $42,000 in jewelry and watches from Lennon's. He was in the store."

Continued above...

"What's he doing in New Hartford, NY?"

11:27am. Hameline continues with a display of pictures identifying the four robbery suspects (including Healy) and their street names.

-Hameline challenges Wittman's earlier attempt to "humanize" Walter Richardson. Moments before he was killed, Richardson ended up shooting at a U.S. Marshal (wearing a bullet proof vest) in Philadelphia. "Real sorry, eh?"

-Everything was recovered except 28 Rolex watches. "Where did they go?" Perhaps with Mr. Pegese and Mr. Ward, who nobody knew about until the Shkanes came forward with details of a second car. "What does that do for their credibility?"

-11:39am. On Healy: "We know he's from Philadelphia. What's he doing in New Hartford, NY?"

Continued above...

"We haven't held back."

11:15am. Prosecutor Kurt Hameline begins his summation (as Wittman did) by thanking the jury. We have a new vantage point at the front of the courtroom, from which we can observe Healy's facial reactions.

-On the evidence: "We haven't held back. Whether it's good or bad, you've seen it all."

-On the police misidentification of the glove: "The glove has taken on a life of its own. That was a mistake. We don't live in a perfect world."

-"Each [Lennon's] employee was threatened."

-On the Prada shoes identified as being worn during the robbery: "If you look at Mr. Healy, I think he's got Prada shoes on now!" In a strange gesture, Healy raises his feet as if to confirm Hameline's statement.

Continued above...

"You're not just a rubber stamp."

11:01am. Wittman continues her summation.

-"Members of the jury, don't just return the verdict the people await. You're not just a rubber stamp."

-"Innocent is not one of your choices. Not guilty can mean a lot of things."

-"Follow your conscience. Follow your instructions. I'm sure you will return a fair and just verdict. Thank you."

Wittman has concluded her summation at 11:03am. We will break for five minutes before hearing from the prosecution.

As always, leave your thoughts by clicking on "comments" below.

"This is what it all boils down to."

10:49am. 40 minutes and counting. Wittman's summation continues...

-We turn to the action at the rear of the Byrne Dairy, February 27, 2006.

-"This is what it all boils down to." Wittman argues that Healy is being cuffed when the shot is fired on Officer Joseph Corr, therefore he is in custody and not responsible for the actions of gunman Walter Richardson. "At that point can he do anything to stop Walter Richardson?"

-On Walter Richardson [paraphrasing]: "I'm not saying he's a nice guy. But if he's such a scumbag, why didn't he shoot Joe Bolton [Kirkland tow truck driver]? Why did he tell the officer [from New Hartford P.D.] to apologize to Corr's wife?"

-"John Healy, whether we like it or not, is a citizen. He's a citizen entitled to the rights that all of us are entitled to. There's no question here who's the David and who's the Goliath. You name the law enforcement agency, it is behind the prosecution of John Healy. But he has the right to an unbiased and fairminded jury."

Continued above...

Defense Summation Continued...

10:31am. Wittman continues to detail the path of the glove, including its unclear chain of custody from agency to agency.

-"There is no tag. There is nothing in evidence that says this came back to the Sheriff's Department."

-[Paraphrasing] "I don't have to tell you that's not how evidence should be handled. But the glove problems that are completely unanswered don't end with the glove. Does the case rise and fall on this issue? No. It is unclear whether he was wearing a glove."

-On fibers from a glove that were found on a broken Rolex case: "How can he be breaking a Rolex case at the same time, the theory is, that he's in the back office standing on [Lennon's employee] Leslee Liesch's arm?"

-10:48am. Wittman: "They wanna show that Mr. Healy was an immediate flight from the Lennon's robbery."

Continued above...

"How do we know that other stuff is reliable evidence?"

10:09am. John Healy's defense attorney, Rebecca Wittman, begins her summation (closing argument).

-"Keep an open mind, and hear me out."

-We again hear about the misidentified glove/do-rag.

-On Dr. Julie Shkane's testimony, who did her own Internet search on the type of vehicles she witnessed at a Washington Mills gas station February 27: "I'd ask you to think about incidental contacts you have with people. If someone asks you for directions this morning, would you be lucky to remember where they were going, much less details about the vehicle they were driving?"

-On the robbery: "Nobody in Lennon's identified anybody. Nobody in Lennon's identified anyone with a beard."

-10:23am. On the glove: "Why harp on the glove? If the glove wasn't properly handled, how do we know that other stuff is reliable evidence?" "Why wasn't the glove tested for DNA?"

Continued above...

Final Instructions

10:07am. Judge Michael Dwyer instructs the jury: "Nothing the attorneys say to you today is evidence in this case."


-One juror (a female) will not participate in the remainder of the trial due to a death in the family. Alternate #1 (a male) will take her place.

Early Arrivals

We won't get underway for at least 20 more minutes, but our courtroom is filling up quickly. Assorted members of the Corr family have taken their seats, and media from Utica, Rome and Syracuse have taken their positions along the front wall.

UPDATE: As of 10:04am, attorneys are present, but we are still waiting to begin.

Decision Day

We'll move back over to the larger ceremonial courtroom on the 5th floor to accommodate the expected large crowd for today's proceedings.

**UPDATE: I stand corrected. Closing arguments will still take place in Judge Michael Dwyer's courtroom. We'll move across the hall if a verdict is reached today.**

Closing arguments begin at 9:45am. As always, we'll be posting updates on this blog almost entirely as they occur. Keep hitting "refresh" all day long for the newest developments.

Also, check out our "on-air" coverage plans (including a live broadcast of the verdict being read) by visiting

Friday, January 19, 2007

Looking Ahead...

12:04pm. Judge Dwyer explains what will happen Monday:

-We will begin at 9:45am. News cameras will be allowed in the courtroom. Defense attorney Rebecca Wittman will deliver her closing argument followed by that of the prosecution.

-Judge Dwyer will then read to the jury the law that applies to each of the 19 counts against John Healy.

-Monday afternoon, the jury will begin deliberations in hopes of reaching a unanimous verdict.

Scroll down to read details from each day of testimony, and click on "comments" to post your thoughts on the trial.

As always, keep checking this blog and for breaking news.

The Defense Rests

11:59am. The defense has rested its case following the testimony of just two witnesses.

Healy - The Booking Room

11:46am. Kirkland Police Officer Vito Sparace is called back to the witness stand.

-Wittman asks about the black glove found in the back of his patrol vehicle.

-Sparace testifies that while Healy was in custody, he was asked by Healy to loosen his handcuffs.

-Wittman asks if other officers were observing when items connected to Healy ($1 bill, bloody tissue) were recovered by Sparace in the back seat of his patrol vehicle. "No."

-11:55am. On cross-examination, Hameline asks how long Healy sat in the back of his police vehicle. "Pretty close to an hour."

-After loosening the cuffs, Sparace observed "chewed up" knuckles on Healy, but cannot recall for certain if he was wearing a glove.

-Hameline's final question (sarcastically): "Mr. Sparace, did you really find that glove, or are you making this all up?" Sparace: "Oh no, I really found the glove."

Defense Makes Its Case

11:34am. Traci Baird is the defense's first witness. She is a cashier at the Kirkland Byrne Dairy. Wittman begins direct-examination.

-Baird testifies that on February 27, 2006, she saw a car come over an embankment and crash into a gas pump. She saw black male get out of the car's passenger side. He was clean-shaven, and headed around the side of the building toward the back.

-Baird testifies that she did not hear gunshots.

-On cross-examination, Baird testifies that she did not get a close look at the second person to emerge from the car.

Baird is off the stand at 11:45am.

Motion To Dismiss Denied

11:18am. Most members of our gallery are still out in the hallway. However, our attorneys are present and Wittman makes a motion to dismiss the murder charge and all robbery charges except those against Gary and Stephen Lennon.

Wittman's basis: 1) Healy was in custody when Officer Joseph Corr was shot and killed. 2) Jewelry store employees do not own the merchandise.

Judge Michael Dwyer did not grant the dismissal. The case continues as expected.

The Prosecution Rests

10:54am. The prosecution has no further witnesses. We will take a short break while attorneys review the 230+ pieces of evidence.

Defense witnesses will follow.

Leave your thoughts by clicking on "comments" below.

"Hurry up and shoot her!"

10:38am. Liesch recounts the moment that a man walked into the back office where she lay on the floor.

-A black man without a gun looked at her. "There's one in here!" Started screaming at her. "Who did you call? Who did you call?" Liesch: "I didn't call anyone, I swear I didn't call anyone!" He is stepping on her arms. A second person with a gun entered the office.

-First man is yelling to the other man with the gun. "Just shoot the (expletive)! Shoot the (expletive) (expletive)! Hurry up and shoot her! Just shoot the (expletive) (expletive)!" Liesch testifies that she was crying and screaming, begging for her life.

-Liesch testifies that a third man informed the two robbers, "The cops are here!" The two people in the room ran out. Still unsure of her safety, she remained on the ground until the police entered.

-Liesch identifies goggles, a gun, and a pair of black Prada shoes observed during the robbery. Hameline asks how she is doing now. Liesch: "For the most part okay, depends on the day."

KEY UPDATE: In earlier testimony, the black Prada shoes were identified as the shoes of John Healy.

-10:51am. On cross-examination, Wittman soft-spokenly challenges Liesch's recollection of the suspects' physical characteristics. There are not a lot of specifics.
Liesch is off the stand at 10:54am.

The Prosecution's Final Witness

10:19am. Leslee Liesch, 26, takes the witness stand. She is an employee of Lennon's - Wilcox Jewelers. She was working the night of February 27, 2006. She also works at Killabrew. Hameline: "I bet you get a lot of tips." Funny moment...

-Liesch testifies that at 8:00pm, "It was a very slow night".

-Near closing time, Liesch testifies that she had gotten up. She saw (fellow employee) Kim Suriano getting down on her hands and knees. A man was handcuffing her.

-(Tearing up, shaking on the witness stand) "Frightened and scared". She testifies how she dialed 911 and pressed the silent alarm lightly.

-She dialed the digits but then set down the phone and hung it up a moment later. "I was scared if somebody caught me with a phone in my hand that that wouldn't fare well for me." She went under her desk and called her boyfriend to inform him the store was being robbed.

-Liesch testifies that, fearing for her life, she crawled out to the open floor of her workspace.

5.6 Miles

10:01am. Inv. Salamone continues to testify on direct-examination.

-Our testimony turns to a car located in the Philadelphia area. Wittman is making multiple objections to Hameline's questioning on the basis of foundation, relevance, or hearsay. Some have been sustained, others overruled.

-Salamone testifies that he traced the chase route from Lennon's-Wilcox Jewelers to the Kirkland Byrne Dairy. Total distance: 5.6 miles.

-Salamone testifies that there is a cell phone tower on Lomond Place in Utica. (Coincidentally, it was near a Lennon's-Wilcox billboard that advertised Rolex watches.)

-28 missing Rolex watches have never been recovered.

-10:17am. On cross-examination, Wittman asks Salamone to describe Robert Ward's limp. Hameline: "You know how he got the limp?" Salamone: "Gunshot wound."

Salamone is off the stand at 10:18am

The Mug Shots

9:47am. Inv. Richard Salamone of New Hartford Police takes the witness stand. Our crowd (including all immediate and many extended members of the Corr family) has grown to the point where the courtroom is (again) filled to capacity.

-Salamone testifies that he was among the local police officers sent to the Philadelphia area following the robbery/homicide. He was there in March, May, June, and November 2006...a total of nine weeks.

-Salamone identifies a photograph of Walter Richardson (street name "Wakil"). ADA Kurt Hameline: "You ever see Walter Richardson in person?" Salamone: "Not while he was alive."

-Salamone then identifies a photograph of Robert Ward (street name "RB"). Defense attorney Rebecca Wittman asks if Salamone met Ward in person. Salamone: "Yes." **Ward is in custody in Pennsylvania.

-Salamone identifies a photograph of Marion Pegese (street name "Dump" or "Billy Dump"). Wittman is again allowed to ask if Salamone had ever met Pegese. Salamone: "No." **Pegese is also in custody in Pennsylvania.

Friday - Day Six

Testimony is nearly underway. We expect two more prosecution witnesses followed by an hour of defense witnesses (possibly three people). It should be a relatively short day of testimony.

Also, a quick word of thanks and appreciation to all of you who have been reading and posting your comments. We still have a lot of work to do, and I hope you'll continue to follow the developments.

As always, keep hitting "refresh" to follow the testimony almost entirely as it occurs.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Nearing The End

4:28pm. Judge Michael Dwyer decides to halt testimony for the day. We had anticipated the dramatic testimony of Lennon's employee Leslee Liesch, but that will have to wait until tomorrow.

The prosecution expects to call just two more witnesses Friday. The defense will follow with about one additional hour of testimony.

Tomorrow will be a short day of testimony, beginning at 9:45am. Closing arguments will not take place until Monday, meaning the jury will not begin deliberations until then.

Scroll down to read through all of today's developments, and click on "comments" to post your thoughts.

"That's a strange place for a drug deal."

4:01pm. Deborah Roberts of Clark Mills takes the witness stand.

-On February 27, Roberts testifies that she visited the Commercial Drive Hannaford around 7:45pm with her daughter.

-We see a receipt. She bought Charmin toilet paper (moment of laughter) and left Hannaford at 7:55pm, heading next for the nearby $1 store. She then noticed a blue car and a second car (goldish color) parked next to each other. Two black males in gold car. Blue car? Couldn't tell.

-Her initial thoughts? "That's a strange place for a drug deal." Roberts testifies that she and her daughter then went into the $1 store. Exited store at 8:13pm. Both cars were gone.

-Roberts testifies that she drove toward Clark Mills (Route 5a to Route 5). Noticed nothing unusual at Lennon's. Her daughter wanted her to stop at the Kirkland Byrne Dairy. "No, it's too late."

-4:14pm. Roberts testifies that she heard (on the family police scanner) about a car accident/fire at the Byrne Dairy a few moments later. Called her son and told him to come home.

-We have roughly 229 pieces of evidence.

Roberts is finished at 4:25pm.

"Just a gut feeling that something wasn't right."

3:36pm. Dr. Julie Shkane (Louis's wife) takes the witness stand.

-We hear testimony similar to that of her husband. After her husband was done filling the gas tank, she asked him, "What took you so long?"

-Dr. Shkane testifies that she felt a little "funny/nervous" about the situation. "Just a gut feeling that something wasn't right."

-Regarding a conversation with police February 28, Dr. Shkane testifies, "I was afraid that nobody knew about a second car."

Dr. Shkane is off the stand at 3:59pm.

Pre-Robbery Directions

2:39pm. Louis Shkane of New Hartford begins to testify.

-Shkane testifies that he was with his wife and two children on the evening of February 27, 2006, before the robbery.

-Went to wash his vehicle at Precision Wash in Washington Mills. Then, he drove to the E-Z Mart gas station on Kellogg Road. He began to fuel his vehicle. Then, he noticed two vehicles pulling into the gas station at the same time.

-The first vehicle was a midnight blue Buick. Its driver said, "Excuse me, can you give me directions to Commercial Drive?" Shkane: "Where are you going?" Driver ignored the question. Shkane: "That's okay, that's none of my business. This is what you do." Shkane then directed the man back to Route 8.

-Shkane testifies that he noticed the arm of a passenger in the first car and at least two other people in the trailing vehicle. After he gave directions to the driver of the first vehicle, that man thanked him and departed the station. The second car followed.


-3:00pm. Shkane testifies that Routes 8/840 are close to Lomond Place in Utica. Earlier, we learned one of the cell phone towers contacted by John Healy's phone was located at Lomond Place.

-Shkane identifies a picture of the man to whom he gave directions. It is Walter Richardson. He then identifies a picture of the crashed Buick as the one Richardson was driving.

-Shkane cannot testify as to whether Healy was in one of the two cars he observed.
-On February 28, he contacted the police upon learning about the robbery/homicide.

Shkane is off the stand at 3:22pm. Back after a ten minute break. As your thoughts by clicking on "comments."

The Return Of The Do-Rag

2:15pm. Investigator Michael Simmons of the Oneida Co. Sheriff's Department is once again called to testify. He is the first witness to make more than one appearance on the stand.

-We are seeing several pieces of evidence already identified throughout the trial including jewelry and credit cards found on the defendant the night of the robbery/homicide.

-2:24pm. On cross-examination, Wittman produces a receipt that indicated two do-rags were received during a March 2006 evidence transfer between the Sheriff's Department and New Hartford Police.

Wittman: "Did you make any effort to photograph the second do-rag?"
Simmons: "There was no second do-rag."
Wittman: "When did you realize?"
Simmons: "Not until very recently."

As testimony has shown already, what was originally identified as a second do-rag was actually a glove.

Simmons is off the stand at 2:38pm.

"Were you injured?"

2:01pm. Direct-examination continues with Stephen Lennon.

-We see a $5400 diamond engagement ring (with a Lennon's SKU tag) recovered from the robbery plus two Rolex watches valued at $4,050.00 and $5,350.00.

-2:09pm. On cross-examination, Wittman asks Lennon to specify how long the robbers were in his store. "Three and a half to five minutes," he says.

-Was he injured during the robbery? No. Was any property stolen from him personally? No.

-On re-direct, Hameline asks about the responsibilities of Lennon's employees, including Leslee Liesch, whose testimony we expect to hear later today.

2:12pm. Stephen Lennon is off the stand.

"Push the button, we're getting robbed."

12:31pm. Stephen Lennon, part owner of Lennon's-Wilcox Jewelers, takes the stand.

-Lennon testified that on February 27 he was working on a customer's necklace when cousin Gary Lennon said, "Push the button, we're getting robbed."

-Heavyset black man with a mask rushed at Stephen, holding a gun. "Get on the (expletive) floor!" he said. Man asked where the videotapes were. Gary showed him to the video surveillance area.

-Stephen had recently read a trade magazine article on what to do during a jewelry store robbery. He did not make eye contact with the robbers. He looked straight at his hands.

-Stephen testified that he was moved from the floor of the workshop to the vault. He was grabbed by the back of his collar. "Get up!" a man said. Stephen was then tied up with the cords used for the video surveillance system. Later, he was able to free himself from the loose ties.


-12:43pm. Stephen identifies the robbers' bag used to collect the stolen merchandise.

-Stephen saw two robbers in the store. He heard another man saying, "Just shoot 'em, just shoot 'em." He also heard cases being smashed. Robbers left. 911 was then dialed.

12:49pm. We break for lunch. Scroll down for all of today's developments, and click on "comments" to post your thoughts. Back at 2:00pm.

"Cell Phone Autopsy"

12:17pm. Richard Berry of the New York State Police (Sidney barracks) takes the stand.

-Berry testifies that on March 3, 2006, he examined the phone obtained from Healy. He saw outgoing/incoming/missed calls, address book, text messages, etc. Berry affirms that the number of this phone is (267) 235-1712.

-Names such as "Wakil" (Walter Richardson's street name, according to previous testimony), "Dump", and "RB" are listed within the phone along with numbers.

12:30pm. Berry is off the stand after Wittman again declines cross-examination.

Phone Communications

11:35am. We are back with Dan Jensen of Sprint-Nextel.

-We are hearing, at-length, the intricacies of a "call detail report".

-February 22. Call made from (267) 235-1712 [the number of the phone found in Healy's jacket pocket] to 1-800-367-6539 [1-800-36-ROLEX]. We hear testimony of other cell phone calls made to and from that (267) number.


-12:02pm. Jensen testifies that the cell towers used to connect multiple calls from the 267 number on February 23/24, 2006, (four days before the robbery) are located in Philadelphia, Albany, Norwich, Utica, and Seneca Turnpike in New Hartford.

-February 27 (the day of the robbery). Documents show more phone calls involving the 267 number starting around 1:00pm, proceeding throughout the afternoon and evening. Cell towers used include those located in Philadelphia and Binghamton.

-February 27, 7:42pm (approximately 40 minutes before the robbery was reported), a call from the 267 number involved a cell tower based in Utica. From there, calls were routed to voicemail.

-12:15pm. Jensen is off the stand after Wittman declines cross-examination.

FBI - Computer Evidence

10:41am. FBI special agent James McDonald (based in Philadelphia) takes the stand. ADA Paul Hernon takes over direct-examination.

-McDonald testified that he obtained computer evidence from the home of Cheryl Brown. Hard drive copy was made. Computer then returned.

-He looked at what's called a computer storage account titled "Big Toot". 33 different files of interest.

-We look at temporary Internet files from February 12, 2006. We see evidence of a Mapquest search for directions from a Philadelphia address to 4571 Commercial Drive, New Hartford (Lennon's-Wilcox Jewelers). February 22: Google search for Rolex watches, police communication scanners, authorized Rolex dealers.

-Unsuccessful Internet searches were also made for "", "", "" and other variations.

-Mapquest route recommended (from Philadelphia) taking I-81 to Binghamton to Rte. 12 North.

-Defense attorney Rebecca Wittman declines cross-examination and McDonald is off the stand at 11:17am. Back after a ten minute break.

Leave your thoughts by clicking "comments" below.

March 14, 2006 - Healy's Phone Call

10:29am. ADA Kurt Hameline introduces the CD and transcript of recorded phone calls as evidence. We're up to 208+ exhibits.

-We hear portions of a 26 minute call between Healy and Cheryl Brown recorded at 1:41pm on 3/14/06

-The following are only excerpts of what Healy said during the recording.

Healy: "Yo, what's up? You find the web site? Erase everything outta there. Don't get to panickin' or nuttin'. Probably some directions. Get Hoddie to do it, he's the one that erased that [expletive] before."

Beatty is through testifying at 10:40am.

Healy In Jail - Threat Assessment

10:07am. The courtroom is 70 degrees and there were parking problems for members of the jury. We are now up to date courtesy of Judge Michael Dwyer's "morning briefing". Onto to the task at hand...

-All immediate (and some extended) members of the Corr family are with us today.

-Deputy Rebecca Beatty, of the Oneida Co. Jail, begins testimony on a "threat assessment" she conducted with defendant John Healy.

-Beatty testified that Healy's girlfriend, Cheryl Brown, established an account to make calls to Healy while he was in the Oneida Co. Jail. Calls are monitored and can be recorded by jail staff.

-Beatty had multiple one-on-one conversations with Healy at the jail. She then testified that Healy had well over one hundred hours of phone conversations with Brown. We see a CD of recorded phone calls. We appear headed toward a playback of these conversations.

Thursday: 15 Witnesses

We'll be getting underway shortly...

Prosecutors said there is the potential to call 15 witnesses today. If that happens, that would just about wrap up their case. Then, we'd move onto any defense witnesses. It is unlikely (but still not completely out of the question) that Healy himself will be called to the stand.

As always, hit "refresh" all day long to read the developments almost entirely as they occur.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

DNA Links Healy To Getaway Car

The final witness was Timothy Goble, another New York State Police forensic scientist. He offered what a Corr family member called "powerful" testimony.

-Healy's DNA was found in multiple places inside the getaway vehicle (especially the passenger side). This includes the blood found on the door, and samples taken from a soda bottle. There were four or five DNA matches.

-Odds that the DNA belonged to someone else? 1 in 300 billion. For perspective, the world population is roughly 6.5 billion.

Testimony resumes Thursday at 10:00am. As always, leave your thoughts on today's developments by clicking "comments", and scroll down for details on all the testimony thus far.

DNA Swabs

4:10pm. Tanika Biss, a State Police forensic scientist, takes the stand.

-Several DNA swabs were taken from the getaway car. They include swabs of blood.

-Investigators also made small cuts to articles of clothing linked to the crimes. Swabs were then taken from those cuts, which were from the mouth section of a ski mask, and nose section of ski goggles

The Rolex Watches

3:53pm. John Flaherty, the national advertising manager for Rolex, takes the stand.

-There are approximately 800 authorized Rolex dealers in the USA. Roughly 15 in upstate New York. Two or three in the Syracuse-Utica area.

-Jewelers must meet certain terms in order to be considered an authorized Rolex dealer.

-Flaherty testified that 1-800-367-6539 (1-800-36-ROLEX) is the number you dial if you seek information about Rolex purchases or to locate a dealer. Caller would provide a ZIP code, and would then be given the four nearest Rolex locations.

-Lennon's W.B. Wilcox Jewelers & two Henry Wilson Jewelers (from DeWitt & Syracuse) are listed on a report as official Rolex jewelers.

-In February 2006, four inquiries were made to the above phone number seeking information on Lennon's-Wilcox Jewelers. The number of the phone used for making the calls is unknown.

4:04pm. On cross-examination, Wittman seeks more details on the Rolex phone records.

Flaherty is off the stand at 4:06pm. He is followed by Tanika Biss, a NYSP forensic scientist.

The Gun

3:10pm. Dennis Lyons, a State Police firearms examiner out of Albany, takes the witness stand.

-He opens a box. He holds up a Smith & Wesson .40-caliber pistol. Serial number: PDC-0865. It is the weapon found beside deceased gunman Walter Richardson on February 28, 2006.

-Lyons testifies that the projectile (bullet) discovered during the autopsy of Officer Joseph Corr was fired from this gun and no other.

-Lyons displays the weapon again and is asked to demonstrate how it would be fired. He says, "Just so everyone knows this is a safe and unloaded weapon."

3:37pm. Wittman declines cross-examination. Back after a break...

Post your thoughts below by clicking "comments".

Forensic Analysis

2:38pm. Garry Veeder of the State Police Forensic Laboratory in Albany takes the stand.

-Veeder is meticulous about the way he handles evidence. 1) While on the witness stand, he would not open any evidence bag. Luckily (perhaps purposely), that part was already done by the previous witness. 2) He handles each piece of evidence with latex gloves. 3) He uses a fresh pair of gloves for each piece of evidence he handles. While this may not sound unusual under the circumstances, it is certainly a departure from what we've been seeing.

-Veeder testified that hairlike fibers taken into evidence (from Lennon's-Wilcox Jewelers) could have come from a glove also connected to the crime.

-Veeder is off the stand at 3:08pm.

Getaway Car Items

2:01pm. Testimony resumes with Investigator Egan.

-Egan continues to unseal evidence bags, remove their contents, and describe items that were originally found inside the getaway car.

-Egan holds and identifies the actual black Nike bag (that contained jewelry on February 27) found in the getaway car. He also opens a bag containing black gloves. Then, we see the pellet gun. No prints could be lifted from that gun.

-2:19pm. ADA Hameline is submitting item after item for identification. The items are then entered into evidence.

-Egan testified that he found no fingerprint evidence of John Healy or Walter Richardson on the items or in the car.

-On cross-examination, Wittman asked about the State Police evidence computers that store detailed records of evidence and the "chain of custody."

Egan is off the stand at 2:37pm.

Your Thoughts - Post Anytime

12:50pm. We break for lunch. Back at 2:00pm.

In the meantime, click on "comments" to post your thoughts on today's developments.

Keep checking for breaking news.

Forensic Connections - The Getaway Car

12:24pm. John Egan, a NYSP Forensic Investigator out of Albany, takes the stand.

-We see photographs of the blue vehicle that crashed at the Kirkland Byrne Dairy. Egan testifies that the vehicle was analyzed at "the lab". Back window was shattered.

-We see a photograph of the driver's side floor and seat. A pellet gun is there. So is a bullet casing. Egan testifies that jewelry was found throughout the vehicle. We see additional shattered glass and an unfired bullet on a rear seat. Red stains that appear to be blood are pointed out.


-A bag located on a back seat is seen in a photograph. We also see black gloves. The bag appears to be filled with plastic bags, envelopes, and jewelry. Egan testifies it was "pretty well filled." Diamonds, rings, pieces of jewelry in need of repair, sales slips with the name Lennon's W.B. Wilcox Jewelers were discovered among the contents.

-12:49pm. We are seeing a parade of photographs that link the car to the jewelry store robbery. We're up to People's Exhibit #170.

Simmons - The Evidence

11:54am. Michael Simmons of the Oneida Co. Sheriff's Department takes the stand.

-As has been the case for most of the day, we review the evidence-gathering process (including, but not limited to, how items were discovered, photographed, tagged, logged, stored, and analyzed).

-Wittman: "Why is there no Sheriff's Department evidence tag on People's #76 (a glove)?" Wittman is pointing out some apparent differences in the way a glove and a winter hat were collected compared to the process for other evidence.

-There is difficulty in this testimony determining where specific evidence was located between February 28 and March 2, 2006.

12:16pm. On re-direct, Hernon asks Simmons to identify Healy as the person from whom he obtained an oral swab.

-Hernon's questioning attempts to strengthen the details of the evidence-gathering process. Glove evidence (referred to as People's #76) was located at New York State Police lab during time in question.

Simmons is off the stand at 12:23pm.

Feels Like Florida

11:53am. As we come back from break, Judge Michael Dwyer says, "Everyone is complaining about the heat." He holds up the official Oneida Co. Court thermometer which reads 75 degrees. Unfortunately, the judge says he has little control over the thermostat.

Clearly, we're talking inside not outside.

Just so you know...

Hair-Like Fibers

10:16am. NHPD Sgt. Robert Philo answers questions from ADA Kurt Hameline.

-Philo photographed the damage at Lennon's-Wilcox Jewelers. Discovered hair-like fibers attached to plastic on a display case.

-Using scissors, Philo cuts open an evidence bag handed to him by Hameline. We see a paper bag with the case number on it. Now, Philo opens the paper bag. It is a (Philo's words) "Small sheet of plastic that has broken fragments of glass on it." There appear to be hair-like fibers on it. Now the item is received into evidence.

-11:27am. Philo opens another bag. We see a green mesh drawstring bag. It was discovered empty at the jewelry store.

-On cross-examination, Wittman questions whether specific close-up photographs were taken.

Philo is off the stand at 11:31am.

Back after a ten minute break. Scroll down for today's developments, and click on "comments" to post your thoughts.

Byrne Dairy Evidence Gathering

10:50am. Deputy Chad Chapman of the Oneida Co. Sheriff's Department takes the stand.

-On March 28, 2006 (a month after the shooting), he was assigned to assist in locating a bullet casing behind the Kirkland Byrne Dairy. He found what appeared to be the metal backing to Officer Joseph Corr's collar brass. We also see a photograph of the bullet casing found that same day.

-On cross-examination, Chapman testified that he took some of the photographs (but not all) of items connected to the crime. One photo by Chapman shows the do-rag. Some of the photos were dated April 10, 2006.


-Additional questions surround the evidence tags produced by varying police agencies. Wittman: "Did anyone ask you to take a picture of any black glove found in a Kirkland police car?" Chapman: "Not to my knowledge. I have no idea where it came from." Wittman: "Nothing further."

Chapman is off the stand at 11:15am.

Shell Casing...Other "Evidence"

10:33am. Patrolman Michael Reilly of NHPD begins to answer questions from ADA Paul Hernon.

-Shell casing was found off of Route 5A (near Route 840 overpass) on March 13, 2006.

-A cup is given to Reilly on the witness stand. It contains the shell casing, which he then identifies. No cross-examination.

10:39am. Charles Haynes with the Oneida Co. Sheriff's Department testified that he photographed the evidence from March 13, 2006. We see photographs of a dented shell casing.

-On cross-examination, Wittman reviews the training necessary to become an evidence technician. Haynes testified that the shell casing was not the only piece of evidence secured that day. In the Lennon's-Wilcox parking lot, a dark knit glove was photographed.

-Latex rubber gloves, work gloves, and other "stuff" was found along Route 5A.

-Hernon clarifies on re-direct that so-called "evidence" is not "evidence" until it comes into court. Some "stuff" from March 13 may not necessarily be evidence.

Haynes is off the stand at 10:49am.

The Gloves. The Do-Rag.

10:04am: Defense attorney Rebecca Wittman begins cross-examination. Most immediate members of the Corr family are present. Tracie Corr is not.

-Inserra testified that he was with John Healy (now in custody) from 11pm until 4am February 27-28.

-Wittman's questioning surrounds the process used to gather property (especially clothing) from Healy on February 27. Pictures of the clothing have put us over 130 pieces of evidence.

-Inserra testified that he did not see, or was not present, when some of the evidence ($1 bill with bloody tissue paper, do-rag) was recovered the night of February 27.

-Glove found on Healy the night of the incident is coming into question. How was it recovered? Some apparent confusion from that night as to whether a second black item was misidentified as a do-rag, but was really a glove.

-On re-direct, Inserra testified about seeing injured knuckles on John Healy. Healy was not wearing gloves at the time. One glove and one do-rag were found in his pocket. (Aforementioned second glove was found in the back of a patrol car the next morning).

Inserra is off the stand at 10:31am.

Wednesday - Day Four

Day Four of testimony is set to get underway momentarily.

We expect to hear the cross-examination of NHPD Sgt. Michael Inserra first, followed by the testimony of forensic scientists who will help prosecutors link the crimes of February 27.

As always, you can hit "refresh" all day long to read new developments almost entirely as they occur.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Tuesday's Testimony Complete

Sgt. Inserra will be cross-examined by Wittman when testimony resumes tomorrow morning at 10:00.

In the meantime, scroll down for all of today's dramatic developments, and click on "comments" to post your thoughts.

As always, check for breaking news.

"Tell the officer's wife I'm sorry. I didn't mean to shoot him."

4:35pm. Sgt. Michael Inserra of New Hartford Police pursued details on Walter Richardson by traveling to Pennsylvania.

-Inserra visited the gunman's house. Met his parents Valerie and Walter Sr. While there (On February 28), Walter Jr. called.

-Walter Jr. apologized. Said, "Tell the officer's wife I'm sorry for shooting him. I didn't mean to shoot him." Inserra had a total of three phone conversations with Richardson, who did not reveal his location.

-U.S. Marshals had Richardson's location. They tried to arrest Richardson that night but he fired at the officers. Police fired back and shot Richardson. He died at the scene. One officer was shot, but was protected by a bullet-proof vest. Sgt. Inserra arrived shortly thereafter.

-We see a photograph of the gun Richardson fired outside his Chester, PA location.

Walter Richardson

4:12pm. Bolton identifies a picture that shows the man who carjacked him. While the man is not identified by name, it is a photograph of Walter Richardson, the man believed to have shot Officer Corr.

Sgt. Michael Inserra of New Hartford Police is next. He will testify about the incidents in Philadelphia.

"I thought I was gonna get shot."

Bolton still on the stand at 4:05pm.

-Bolton and man discussed their children. Bolton, a 9 year old son. Man, an 8 year old daughter and 4 year old son. Bolton wanted to get back for a Cub Scout commitment on Tuesday.

-Bolton dropped man off in Philadelphia. "Are you gonna shoot me?" Man: "No." He couldn't give Bolton's cell phone back. Man: "Nobody's gonna get those numbers." Man handed Bolton a $100 bill. "Sorry for your inconveniences, here you go."

-Bolton found out later that the man had died. No idea, yet, what he was running from.

Most riveting testimony of the day. Still developing...

"I made a big mistake"

3:54pm. Bolton testified that the man said, "I (expletive) up. I made a big mistake."

-Man (who had been using Bolton's cell phone) told Bolton to make up a story for his girlfriend. Bolton told her that he had to tow a car to Watertown and the customer was riding with him. He'd be home late.

-Route to Pennsylvania: Route 5 West to DeWitt. Then, I-481S to I-81 South (Syracuse).

-Man had a gray/brown windbreaker on.


-Hameline: "Did you think you might die?" Bolton: "Yes." Man wanted the heat turned up inside the truck.

-Bolton considered jumping out of the truck or crashing it at 65/70mph. "I thought about crashing the truck into the guardrail. But with my luck, probably wouldn't turn out so well."

-Bolton testified that the man would pay for gas at a refueling stop. Hameline: "That was nice of him, wasn't it?"

-At gas station, Bolton got an iced tea. Man got an energy drink. Bolton thought about an escape attempt. "With my luck, I thought I'd end up not making it."

The Carjacking: "Don't do anything stupid!"

3:34pm. Joseph Bolton, who drives a tow truck for Kirkland Automotive, takes the stand.

-Bolton testified that he saw activity at the Kirkland Byrne Dairy. He parked his tow truck, ate pizza, and listened to "Mandatory Metallica" (courtroom laughs) on K-Rock.

-There was a knock on the passenger side window. Bolton saw a neatly groomed black man with short hair and a thin beard. Man said he had car trouble. Bolton said "Sure, where do you have to go?" Man opened door. "Philadelphia, Pennsylvania." The man had a gun.

-Bolton opened his door and tried to get out. Man said, "Close the damn door, close the damn door. We're gonna go." Man told him to take a left onto Route 5 (away from Byrne Dairy). Went straight, passing Route 233. Man (who is presumed to be Walter Richardson but has not been officially identified) said to watch the high beams and watch the speed. Police vehicles passed them going in the opposite direction.

-Bolton testified that the man said, "Stay cool, be calm, don't do anything stupid." Man held a gun to Bolton and threatened to shoot him.

-Regarding the police vehicles, Bolton asked the man, "I'm not a rocket scientist, but are they for you?" Man: "Yeah". Man said he "Made a big mistake."

Ring Found

Gerald Countryman (who works for National Grid) testified briefly that he discovered a ring at the Byrne Dairy more than a week after the incident. However, it has not yet been established where this ring came from.

Mid afternoon break at 3:15pm. Back in ten minutes...

In the meantime, scroll down to read all of today's developments, and click on "comments" to give us your thoughts.

The Getaway Car

2:24pm. Healt (not to be confused with Healy) is still on the stand. We are looking at interior photographs of the car that crashed into the Byrne Dairy.

-Healt identifies jewelry (Rolex watches/rings) found inside the vehicle. One Rolex had a price tag of $4,050. Another was tagged at $5,350.

-Canine search took place in the woods and along the creek behind the Byrne Dairy leading to Route 5. Tracks indicated that suspect (presumably Richardson) fell through the ice covering the creek, then continued to run. Blood stains were observed.

-Healt testified that some property (jewelry) was found on Healy at the Byrne Dairy.

UPDATE - Cross Examination

-2:43pm. Wittman is asking Healt questions about the evidence-gathering process. Officer Corr's car was equipped with video recording equipment, but there is no recording of the February 27 chase.

-On re-direct, Healt testified that a shell casing was found along the beginning segment of the chase route (Route 5A to 840).

-Wittman's re-cross focuses on a glove found among the items secured from Healy. Glove was not submitted to State Police lab. Healt, again with ADA Paul Hernon, later testifies that the glove was misidentified as a second "do-rag". Wittman objects...and is sustained.

Healt is off the stand at 3:07 pm.

The Byrne Dairy Crash (Part Two)

1:57pm. Testimony resumes with the direct examination of Peter Healt from the Oneida Co. Sheriff's Department.

-Healt is playing the surveillance video of the crash at the Byrne Dairy. It moves frame by frame...

-We see a car slam into a gas pump. The pump itself goes flying. Bright fire ensues. Shadow emerges. A person (believed to be Walter Richardson, the gunman) is running. We then see it from another angle.

-Wittman objects to entering still photographs of the same surveillance video into evidence. Says they are not "fair and accurate" depictions. They go into evidence anyway.


-Healt testifies that the running man in the surveillance video appears to be holding a handgun in his right hand. Wittman objects to the testimony, but it is allowed. She will likely question Healt on this during cross-examination.

Coming Up This Afternoon...

Attorneys plan to call the truck driver who was carjacked by the gunman, Walter Richardson. All told, they are about halfway through their list of witnesses.

Scroll down for the rest of today's developments, and click "comments" to post your thoughts.

The Investigation...

12:34pm. Peter Healt, an investigator with the Oneida Co. Sheriff's Department begins to testify. He investigated the crime scene at the Byrne Dairy.

-We are up to at least 93 pieces of evidence.

12:39pm. We break for lunch. Testimony resumes at 1:55pm.

The Byrne Dairy Crash

12:27pm. Corr family members who left earlier have returned. Grant Garramone of the Oneida Co. District Attorney's Office takes the stand. He was called to respond the night of the robbery/homicide.

-Garramone testified that he has seen the surveillance footage of the crash at the Kirkland Byrne Dairy. There are two compact discs here in court that contain the footage.

-We do not see the footage. There is no cross-examination. Garramone is finished at 12:33pm.

More On The Autopsy

12:13pm. Gregory Facciolo of the Utica Police Department takes the stand. Officer Corr's parents and sisters leave the courtroom. Tracie Corr stays to listen.

-Facciolo (who assisted with the autopsy) identified a photograph of the fallen officer as he appeared following the shooting. The picture is not displayed publicly.

-We do, however, see a photo of the uniform Officer Corr had been wearing when he was shot.

-We see a photograph of what used to be a white undershirt. It is not white in this image. It is stained almost completely with Officer Corr's blood.

-We see the "H" of the "N.H.P.D." collar brass Corr was wearing that night. It was removed from his body.

-Members of the New Hartford police are seated up front. Several are leaned over, elbows on legs. Heads down. This is a difficult piece of testimony.

Facciolo is off the stand at 12:25pm.