Cara Rintala retrial: Live coverage of f...
Fred Contrada reporting for The Republican and Masslive on second day of Cara Rintala murder trial. I'm sorry for the delay. It has taken me 20 minutes to get my computer on-line.
Friday January 10, 2014 9:30 
A juror is telling Judge Mary-Lou Rup that her husband saw her on the news last night. She said this would not affect her ability to sit on the jury. The judge is now discussing this with the lawyers.
Friday January 10, 2014 9:31 
Granby Police Chief Al Wishart is waiting to testify. He was on the stand yesterday when we adjourned. Wishart knew both the defendant and the victim. He was a sergeant in the Granby PD when the Rintalas came in to report a domestic assault.
Friday January 10, 2014 9:33 
The jury will go on a view of the crime scene this afternoon.
Friday January 10, 2014 9:34 
Rup is telling the courtroom that the media has been told the rules, one of which is that jurors cannot be filmed or photographed in any way during the trial. Neither she nor the attorneys saw the TV footage in question, but she will investigate. "Even if you photograph that accidentally, broadcasting it is even more improper."
Friday January 10, 2014 9:36 
Rup has brought the juror in again and is questioning her at sidebar. I can hear her tell the juror the court will look into the situation.
Friday January 10, 2014 9:38 
I covered the Kristen Gilbert murder trial in 2000. During jury deliberations, which lasted about 11 days, a reporter got in trouble for approaching a juror in the parking garage. The judge scolded him and threatened to jail him if he did something like that again.
Friday January 10, 2014 9:40 
Rup is asking the jurors if they have read, or heard anything about the case since yesterday. No.
Friday January 10, 2014 9:41 
Rup is previewing that the 2008 visit to the Granby PD by the Rintalas about which Wishart will testify. The jury may not consider any alleged crime committed by Cara against Annamarie that was discussed then in any way other than to assess the defendant's state of mind.
Friday January 10, 2014 9:45 
Rup is also advising the jury that the prosecution must prove that any statements Cara made to Wishart were made voluntarily. This entails her understanding of her Miranda rights.
Friday January 10, 2014 9:48 
[Comment From Guest Guest : ] 
Will there be live streaming video from the courtroom on MassLive?
Friday January 10, 2014 9:48 Guest
Friday January 10, 2014 9:48 
Wishart back on stand under questioning by prosecutor Steve Gagne: Cara said it was just a verbal argument, not physical. They spoke for 2-3 minutes. Wishart then spoke to Ann again. He decided there was probable cause to arrest Cara. When he said she was going to be arrested, "her demeanor flipped very dramatically." She became angry, aggressive. He booked her.
Friday January 10, 2014 9:51 
Wishart: Cara asked how things would change if she said Ann hit her. Wishart said Ann would be charged as well. Cara said Annamarie had grabbed her neck, showed him a red mark on her neck.
Friday January 10, 2014 9:53 
Wishart: Cara agreed to make a written statement. Annamarie was granted a restraining order against Cara, which has just been put into evidence. Rup repeats her directive about how the jury may consider this.
Friday January 10, 2014 9:56 
Wishart: We called a judge and read him Annamarie's account. The judge granted the order. Under terms of the order, Cara could not contact Annamarie or their daughter Briana. Cara also had to stay away from her own home on Barton Street in Granby. Cara was "very upset."
Friday January 10, 2014 9:59 
Wishart: Looks at court document re assault and battery charge against Cara. Admitted into evidence.
Friday January 10, 2014 10:01 
Wishart: We notified Department of Children and Families. Hoose on cross.
Friday January 10, 2014 10:01 
Wishart: No marks on Annamarie or Briana. Still we must make an arrest if we feel there is probable cause for assault and battery. Cara didn't resist arrest. Police are required to inform people of their rights to obtain a restraining order.
Friday January 10, 2014 10:08 
Wishart: Cara said she, not Ann, owned the home and paid the mortgage. The restraining order was vacated a day or two later. The assault and battery complaint was dismissed. Hoose done with cross. Gagne on redirect.
Friday January 10, 2014 10:11 
Wishart: Gagne elicits no further testimony. Wishart excused. Gagne calls Lynn Menard, Granby PD dispatcher.
Friday January 10, 2014 10:13 
Menard: May 12, 2009, noon. Got an abandoned 911 call, no one there when Menard answered. It registered 18 Barton St., the Rintalas' address. Menard called the number back. "I heard screaming and then the call was disconnected." Another hang up. Menard called back again, got "Mrs. Rintala." Mrs. Rintala said her child was playing with the phone (in the background she could hear someone say "Just leave" in a stern manner.) Menard notified police.
Friday January 10, 2014 10:19 
Hoose has no questions.
Friday January 10, 2014 10:19 
Gagne offers May 12, 2009 divorce filing by Cara vs. Annamarie. Admitted into evidence. Gagne calls Barbara Fenn, a Granby police detective.
Friday January 10, 2014 10:20 
Fenn: May 26, 2009. Fenn covering dispatch desk. Cara called dispatch, 911. Gagne plays 911 call. (I can't understand a word of it). The caller is distraught, crying. The word "Cara." Caller hysterical.
Friday January 10, 2014 10:28 
Fenn: Rintala said she needed help. Two officers went to 18 Barton St. Cara and Ann were outside. Ann was upset. They were told they could seek restraining orders at district court. They both did, got mutual restraining orders.
Friday January 10, 2014 10:32 
Fenn: (Lawyers, judge at sidebar). The victim's name is Annamarie. Gagne refers to her as "Annemarie," Hoose as "Annamarie." Sometimes they call her "Ann."
Friday January 10, 2014 10:34 
Fenn: Gagne offers into evidence divorce filing by Annamarie Rintala. No more questions. Hoose on cross.
Friday January 10, 2014 10:35 
Fenn: No fight over Briana when Fenn left the Rintala home. Both agreed to share custody of daughter. Restraining orders nearly identical. No further questions. Fenn steps down. Court takes morning recess, 20 minutes.
Friday January 10, 2014 10:40 
Rup is playing the recording of the district court session on the dueling restraining orders, which the defense has not heard. I can understand this. The judge is asking the woman why. Cara: "All that I can take. I'm afraid to be in my house.I'm constantly threatened verbally and bodily. I filed divorce papers two weeks ago. Ann got a lawyer and had me served." (Cara sounds tearful).
Friday January 10, 2014 10:45 
Tape: Cara: "She constantly threatens me. There was an incident in October. She's going to take my job, my daughter. I feel so helpless. I'm afraid. I want peace in the house. I pay the whole mortgage myself, I pay all the bills myself."
Judge: "I'm going to issue two restraining orders. Deal with it in respect to your marriage." (Angrily). "I'm not going to play games with this. Deal with it as adults or I'll call DCF right now and tell them I don't think either one of you is stable enough to deal with this child. Is that what you want?.. If one of you makes an allegation of abuse against the other, you'd better have documentation."
This recording was not played at the first trial. Rup will admit it into evidence this time.
Friday January 10, 2014 10:50 
Court adjourns until 11:10 a.m.
Friday January 10, 2014 10:51 
[Comment From Guest Guest : ] 
Will you be able to go along when they view the crime scene later today?
Friday January 10, 2014 11:12 Guest
I am not going on the view but we will have a photographer there. Reporters cannot
go into the house with the jurors or talk to them. In fact, we must stay 100 yards away. Photographers cannot photograph the jurors. I went on the view for the first trial but sat in my car and blogged background.
Friday January 10, 2014 11:14 
The tape of the dual restraining order court session was dramatic. The judge was clearly angry. It was not admitted into evidence the first time. I cannot recall the exact reason but I believe the defense thought it was prejudicial.
Friday January 10, 2014 11:15 
The TV cameras were crowding me and blocking my view this morning, but they are gone now. We do our best to accommodate each other in the small space that we have.
Friday January 10, 2014 11:17 
The judge is talking to a juror at sidebar. I can't hear it clearly.
Friday January 10, 2014 11:18 
There are 10 women and 5 men on the jury. I could not make a head count until now. Rup is telling them again about applying the law to the evidence they have heard. This was apparently an issue with the juror she just spoke with. They jury will now view a video of part of the hearing on the restraining order.
Friday January 10, 2014 11:22 
It is a recording, not a video. Sorry. The Rintalas are being sworn in. Judge asks which is which. About their child. About the restraining orders. Asks Cara why. She cries, says has taken all she can take. Is constantly threatened. (As I hear her voice, I can't see Cara in court. She sits behind her attorneys.) Says they are both great moms. Says up until has only been verbal. "I feel so helpless. If she comes in my face I have to look away. I'm afraid. I want peace in the house."
Friday January 10, 2014 11:28 
Here is the part where the judge scolds the women loudly. "Deal with it in respect to your marriage... You're going to have to deal with it as parents."
Judge threatens to to call DCF right now and say neither one is stable enough to deal with the child. "Is that what you want?"
"I'll be on the phone to DCF so fast, they'll be here before you get out the door."
Friday January 10, 2014 11:31 
Gagne calls Helen Hurteau, who lives at 21 Barton St., Granby, directly across from the Rintala home. Gagne intorduces photos of homes in the neighborhood, shows them on screen to Hurteau and the jury.
Friday January 10, 2014 11:36 
Hurteau: We'd help each other if needed. Were friendly. Didn't socialize. Had conversation with Cara about finances. Cara said Ann had stolen some funds from her. Said it would take her a lifetime to recover from that. No more questions. Hoose on cross.
Friday January 10, 2014 11:39 
Hurteau: Cara moved in first, 7-8 years before, Ann later. Cara used her EMT skills on Hurteau's daughter, who injured her foot. Never saw Cara and Ann fight. Hurteau told police they seemed like a loving couple.
Friday January 10, 2014 11:43 
Hurteau: At some point Ann was not around. Cara didn't go into details about her problems with Ann. Then Ann seemed to be back. No further questions. Hurteau excused. Gagne calls Roy Dupuis, another Granby neighbor (20 Barton St.)
Friday January 10, 2014 11:47 
Dupuis: Lives there with wife Barbara. Cara was living on the street before them. The Dupuis live about 150 feet away but can't see much of the Rintala property. The Dupuis would go over there for birthday parties, take care of the Rintalas' chocolate lab, Chuck, their cats, their great dane Bella. The Rintalas had one cat that was about 20 years old.
Friday January 10, 2014 11:52 
Dupuis: Looks at photo of shovel, says he's seen it there before, near the Rintala door. Used, he says, for scooping up dog poop.
Friday January 10, 2014 11:55 
Dupuis: March 29, 2010. Dupuis worked that afternoon, came home 2-2:30. Nothing out of ordinary at Rintala house. Roy and wife watching "Wheel of Fortune" in basement. Knock on window. Ring of doorbell. Cara there with baby, said "Call 911. Ann's in the basement."
Friday January 10, 2014 11:58 
Dupuis: The dog was there too, unleashed. Cara very upset. Dupuis called 911. Gagne plays it for jury.
Friday January 10, 2014 11:59 
Dupuis: (911 call playing): I don't know what the problem is. She said the other one was down the basement. She was pretty distraught.
Friday January 10, 2014 12:02 
Dupuis: Could see lights from cruisers by the end of the call. We took care of Briana, didn't know exactly what was going on. Police came to speak to Briana. Cara's parents came from Rhode Island to take Briana. Cara never came back to house, sold it.
Friday January 10, 2014 12:06 
Dupuis: Rintala property very neat, well kept. Cara once told him she and Ann having problems, might separate. (This was a month before March 2010). No more questions. Hoose on cross.
Friday January 10, 2014 12:08 
Dupuis: On March 29, 2010, could tell Cara was upset, her voice shaking.
Friday January 10, 2014 12:14 
Dupuis: Sharkey (the dog) knows you're the meal ticket, is always happy to see you. You're a good neighbor but not good enough to pick up the dog poop. You never used their shovel for that.
Friday January 10, 2014 12:15 
Dupuis: Reads over his statement to police on March 29, 2010. Remembers Cara told him she and Ann might break up in the fall before that, not a month before. Cara said she was going to counseling with Ann.
Friday January 10, 2014 12:21 
Dupuis: Got to know Cara's parents, friends. Stopped to visit Cara and her parents while on vacation in Rhode Island, happened to see Cara pushing baby carriage. Cara and Ann had cats before Briana coming. Hoose done. No redirect. Dupuis excused.
Friday January 10, 2014 12:24 
Gagne calls Granby police Sgt. Gary Poehler.
Friday January 10, 2014 12:26 
Poehler: Granby typically has two cruisers on patrol at any given time. He was dispatched to the Rintala home on March 29, 2010, knew both Cara and Annamarie.
Friday January 10, 2014 12:29 
Poehler: Went to side door. Basement stairs directly ahead inside. Looks at photo looking down basement stairs (getting close to the crime scene). Heard female yelling, crying. Poehler went in, announced himself. Saw someone lying on basement floor. "I could see feet at the bottom of the staircase." Everything in dissaray. Saw Cara siting on the floor. "She was holding a female party across her lap with her legs extended outward."
Friday January 10, 2014 12:34 
Poehler: Didn't recognize Annamarie.Large amount of paint spread over area. Annamarie's face, hair covered with blood, paint. Paint almost looked pink. Was wet. Poehler stepped in the paint. Cara told him the body was Ann. Ann's arms out to the sides. Cara was "doing a motion" on Annmarie's body, smearing the paint and blood. "She's dead. I can;t believe she's dead," Cara said. Crying. Upset. Second officer arrived.
Friday January 10, 2014 12:38 
Poehler: Poehler and Sgt. Mark Smith removed Cara from the basement. Other police, paramedics arrived. Gagne about to show a video of crime scene.
Friday January 10, 2014 12:40 
Poehler: (Rup tells juror there will be some upsetting photos. The videotape will show her body. They must view this dispassionately). Gagne plays tape, which can be seen by jury on a monitor. Exterior of the house. Police tape across doorway. Floor leading to basement stairs. (The Cochranes have their heads down). Kitchen. Bathroom. Bedroom.
Friday January 10, 2014 12:48 
Poehler: (video still playing) Child's room.
Friday January 10, 2014 12:51 
[Comment From MB MB : ] 
Fred - does someone currently live in the Rintala home?
Friday January 10, 2014 12:51 MB
Friday January 10, 2014 12:51 
Poehler: (video playing) (slowly) Still on the upper floor. Living room. Basement stairs. Annamarie's body on basement floor. Arms are up. Covered with paint, blood. Items strewn about.
Friday January 10, 2014 12:58 
Poehler: (video playing) Basement a mess. (Cochranes not watching).
Friday January 10, 2014 1:00 
[Comment From Guest Guest : ] 
So if someone is already living in the house now what good is it to take them there. It's not like it will make a difference or any evidence will be there
Friday January 10, 2014 1:00 Guest
You're right about that, but crime scene views can give jurors and idea of how long it takes to get from one point to another, for example, and this can help them decide if the crime was committed as the prosecution said.
Friday January 10, 2014 1:01 
Poehler: (video playing) Lots of stuff on basement shelves. Camera keeps returning to Annamarie's body on the floor. She is lying face up. Blue paint on her slacks. Belly exposed.
Friday January 10, 2014 1:03 
Poehler: (video playing) Long slow shot of Annamarie's body. Close-up of blood near her side. White paint on her face. Blood on her hand. Eyes half open. In a bra. Gruesome. Some family members leave the room.
Friday January 10, 2014 1:06 
[Comment From Guest Guest : ] 
I was a juror on the first trial and it was very worthwhile to go on the trip to see how the layout is. Especially the door into the house and how it is in relation to the stairs down into the basemnt.
Friday January 10, 2014 1:07 Guest
[Comment From Guest Guest : ] 
what's with all the paint? Has anyone explained?
Friday January 10, 2014 1:08 Guest
Rup breaks for lunch. The jury will go on the view in the afternoon.
Friday January 10, 2014 1:08 
The paint is supposed to be pink for a while while wet. The prosecution wanted to show this as proof of their timetable, but there were questions about this and they never aired their theory. The prosecution maintains Cara used the paint to cover up evidence. Cara will not go on view, though she has this right. Clerk of Court Harry Jekanowski is swearing in the court officers as to their duties on the view.
Friday January 10, 2014 1:10 
Court in recess. Masslive coverage will resume at 9 a.m. on Monday.
Friday January 10, 2014 1:11 
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