Defense Set To Rest In Vaughn Family Massacre Trial
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Updated 09/18/12 – 3:11 p.m.
JOLIET, Ill. (STMW) – Christopher Vaughn’s own blood stain expert agreed with prosecutors Tuesday that his analysis of what happened in Vaughn’s Ford Expedition five years ago doesn’t match the Oswego man’s story.
“It does not jive,” said Tom Bevel of Oklahoma. “No sir.”
Bevel gave that answer to Assistant State’s Attorney Michael Fitzgerald during a hostile cross-examination as Vaughn’s defense prepares to come to a close, Sun-Times Media is reporting.
Vaughn’s lawyer, George Lenard, told Judge Daniel Rozak he has one more potential witness to call, aside from possibly Vaughn himself. Later, though, he said Vaughn will not testify in his own defense.
He already spent the morning lobbing questions at Bevel, who testified he saw what might have been back-spatter stains on Kimberly Vaughn’s left thumb, her right sneaker and the Taurus 9 mm pistol discovered between her feet. Those types of stains might suggest a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Bevel also said he amended his report earlier this year about the Vaughn family’s shooting deaths after a conversation with Lenard. He said he took out a sentence about Vaughn unbuckling his wife’s seat belt, where investigators found Vaughn’s blood, and replaced it with a sentence suggesting Vaughn and his wife must have come into contact with each other after they both began bleeding.
Fitzgerald pointed out Vaughn told police he left the SUV after his wife shot him — and before she took a bullet under the chin another expert has testified would have led to her near-immediate death.
But some of the blood evidence suggests he was in the SUV after she was shot.
Bevel agreed it didn’t make sense.
Vaughn is on trial for the quadruple murder of his 34-year-old wife Kimberly and their children — Abigayle, 12, Cassandra, 11, and Blake, 8. Police found their bodies June 14, 2007, in the family SUV. It was parked in a secluded area off a frontage road west of I-55 near Bluff Road. Vaughn contends his wife shot him and then killed their children before committing suicide.
Prosecutors claim Vaughn slaughtered his family so he could go live in the Canadian wilderness.
Closing arguments in the trial are expected later this week.
(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2012. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)