Day 4: Trial of ETX mom accused of killing babysitter

Published: May. 10, 2012 at 1:31 PM CDT|Updated: May. 24, 2012 at 1:33 PM CDT
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TYLER, TX (KLTV) - The trial of an East Texas woman accused of killing her mentally disabled babysitter continues in a Tyler courtroom. Today is day four of testimony in Kimberly Cargill's murder trial.

Once again, KLTV's Melanie Torre will have live updates from the courtroom throughout the day.

Kimberly Cargill Trial Day 4

State calls first witness Dr. Foy Hamons. Hamons is a dentist in Whitehouse. Hamons was Cherry's dentist starting in June 2009. He saw her three times and says she usually had someone with her at the dentist office. He says Cherry was pleasant, easy going and easy to work on.

Hamons brought Cherry's dental records and briefly goes over them with the state.

Pass the witness.

Defense begins asking Hamons about Cherry's medications listed on the records. Hamons says she was epileptic and on medicine for seizures.

Defense asks Hamons if he knew if Cherry was taking her medication. Hamons says he relies on the patient's word when it comes to if they're taking their medicine.

State calls next witness Dr. Robert Williams.

Williams says he is a private practice dentist and is a board certified forensic dentist from Dallas. He says a forensic dentist mostly uses dental records to identify people when their faces and fingerprints are unidentifiable. Williams graduated from Baylor college of dentistry in 1977. He practiced dentistry for 10 years. He later became a police officer, attended a forensic course and became board certified in 1996.

Williams was called to ID Walker's remains on 6/23/10. Williams says he received Walker's records from Dr. Hamons. Williams explains his process of identifying someone through dental records.. Taking x-rays, scans, etc.

Williams has a PowerPoint presentation on disc. Defense and State take a few minutes to load the disc into a computer to view it.

After about 15 minutes, Dr. Williams' PowerPoint is up and running on a monitor in the courtroom. His PowerPoint has images of Cherry Walker's dental x-rays. Williams goes page by page explaining how he identified Walker. One of her teeth was missing, she had a retained baby tooth and she had fillings in particular teeth. He goes over the form of her teeth, as well as the spacing.

State calls next witness Patricia McAnnally. McAnnally is a nurse who flew in from Florida. She talks about her management position and everything she does on a normal day from releasing bodies to funeral homes to addressing patient complaints.

McAnnally used to work at ETMC as a supervisor and it's there she met Cargill. McAnnally and the state go over documents that McAnnally would have overseen like time slips, etc.

McAnnally goes over what LVNs, like Cargill, are allowed to do. The state and McAnnally begin to write a  list of what a typical LVN's day would be like. The Sate and McAnnally go hour by hour writing out everything Kimberly Cargill should have been doing on June 18. "There's not a lot of downtime for a nurse," McAnnally says.

15 minute recess

State begins to go over Cargill's June 18 phone records with McAnnally. State tells McAnnally these are voice calls. McAnnally tells the jury that according to the policy at the time, nurses were not allowed to make personal calls while working.

McAnnally: They're not supposed to be on their cell phone while they're on duty.

As the state goes over the time of every single call or text, they ask McAnnally what work-related task Cargill should have been doing at that time. About a quarter of the way through the defense asks if they can consult at the judge's bench.

State goes back to the phone records, calling each time out.

State tells McAnnally there were 78 calls and/or texts. The state asks if an LVN using their phone that much while on the job would surprise her. McAnnally says on that day, June 18, she had to call Cargill in to the office because patients were complaining they weren't getting their meds. McAnnally says Cargill told her she was giving good care to her patients and would never not take care of them.

State begins going over Cargill's access pass log. This log shows every time Cargill went into a locked room or laboratory. The log shows Cargill checking into the break room frequently. Every 10 minutes or less around 10:45 am-1pm. She also checks into a utility room frequently at some times that correspond with her phone logs. 

State: Do nurses carry medicine in their pockets?

McAnnally: Sometimes, but they're not supposed to.

State: Can a nurse just go in there and say, I have a headache, I'm just going to go in [the med room] and take one blister pack out.

McAnally: No

State: That'd be real bad wouldn't it?

McAnally: Yes.

Pass the witness.

McAnnally tells the defense she remembers calling Cargill in after a patient complaint. She says Cargill was upset and cried in her office.

Defense: All of these entries into the break room doesn't necessarily mean someone was taking a break... Couldn't they have been looking for someone?

McAnally: yes

Defense asks if an inventory of medication showed Cargill improperly taking anything on June 18. McAnally says she didn't check the records herself but wasn't aware of any.

State: She's not checking to confer with another nurse if she's on a phone call, is she?

McAnally: No.

State goes over break room entries again compared to phone records.

Recess for lunch

After lunch there will be testimony from a USAA bank records custodian and more crime scene witnesses.

State calls next witness, Diane Mathis, a records custodian from San Antonio for USAA bank.

State shows Mathis a copy of Cargill's bank records. She days the records show a $35 purchase was made on June 18, 2012 at 9:16pm.

Pass the witness.

Defense has no questions for Mathis.

The witness is excused.

State calls next witness, Noel Martin. Detective Martin has been working for the Smith County Sheriff's Department since the mid 90s.  Martin says most of his training has been in blood stain analysis, processing evidence for forensic testing, shooting reconstruction, crime scene reconstruction, fingerprint matching and identifying. Martin says he has participated in so many death investigations he can't even number them all. He says he's often working at least 5-7 homicides at once. He says he has assisted most surrounding counties, the Texas Rangers in Dallas and the FBI in investigating deaths.

Martin says on June 19 he received a call that he needed to respond to a rural road where a dead body had been located.

State puts a large map on display. On the map it shows where Cargill was pulled over by Chandler PD, where Cherry Walker lives, where Kimberly Cargill lives and where Cherry's body was found.

Martin explains to the jury the normal protocol when responding to a crime scene.

Brent Davis (Texas Ranger who testified yesterday) runs the 360 degree camera again while Martin explains what she saw and did that day.

Martin explains how the sand wasn't conducive for holding tire tracks and that it would be possible for a car to come in and out of the area where the body was found without leaving tracks. Martin also says it appeared to be an area that wasn't private and traveled moderately.

Martin begins to talk about some of the evidence located around Cherry's body included a fast food straw wrapper and a dairy fresh creamer package.

Martin says the placement of those items indicated to him that the body had been transported to that location by a vehicle and that those items came out of the car when the body was dumped out.

Martin says the body positioning indicated that the body had been dumped there because the shoes were very clean, with the exception of the toes which were pointed downward and into the dirt.

Martin talks about the observations about the blood in the body and the body temperature. He says the body was warm, but only from being in the sun all day. He says the blood had settled in a way that indicated the body had been there for hours.

Martin says Cherry didn't have a single item with or on her that aided in her identification.

Martin says they did not roll the victim over until it was almost getting dark. He says the most significant things to him were the burns to her body and that there were no gunshot, stab or other wounds that may have indicated how Cherry died.

Martin says nobody touched anything without his approval. He says they did a search of the area looking for other items that might have been related to the scene.

State asks the court's permission to begin unsealing evidence. The first envelope opened contains the dairy fresh creamer package found lying between Cherry's legs at the crime scene.

The evidence envelope contains the DNA swab taken from Kim Cargill. He says this sample was taken with consent. The other piece of evidence present in the courtroom is the straw wrapper collected by Martin at the scene.

Martin says he searched Cargill's residence on June 23. Martin begins describing Cargill's brick, single family house. Martin says there were a number of other law enforcement agents with him who were instructed not to move or touch anything without Martin's permission.

State asks for 15 minutes to organize poster boards containing photos of evidence.

State puts on display photos of Kimberly Cargill's master bedroom. It's very messy with fast food trash and half eaten tater tots and pieces of bread buns scattered on the carpet.

Martin says on the floor in the master bedroom and in the master bathroom, investigators found dairy fresh creamers that were the exact same brand as the one found between the legs of Cherry walker at the crime scene. Martin says the seal to a milk carton was found in a potted plant and the bathtub contained nine opened dairy fresh creamer containers and used feminine products.

Martin says the majority of the house was cluttered and unorganized. State puts photos of the laundry room on display. Martin says there was one wet sheet in the washer and that seemed suspicious to him because it was the only thing in the washer when there were other dirty clothes items in the laundry room that could have been washed with the sheet.

Martin says in the dryer there was an empty single pill blister packet. He says it appeared to him the pill had been removed and then the pack was washed as dried in the clothes.

Martin says he later opened the sheet and found a red sipping straw and two green pieces of plastic inside it.

Martin opens another piece of evidence. They are van tennis shoes with sand on the bottom of them. He says the sand on the shoes is similar to the sand found at the crime scene.

Martin says in Cargill's trash were burned pieces of paper. He says he found this significant because he was investigating a death where fire was involved.

State passes the witness.

Defense asks about Van shoes with sand on them. Defense asks if the shoes were sent for further testing. Martin says they were not.

Defense asks about the sheet in the washing machine.

Defense: Was that actually a table cloth?

Martin: I don't know, Mr. Harrison. It looked like a sheet to me. It was a long piece of linen.

Defense removes the sheet/table cloth out of the evidence bag completely so the jury can see. The state did not remove the "sheet" for the jury when they were talking about it, but instead kept it in the evidence bag. Martin says it could be a sheet or a table cloth.

Defense continues to ask about the creamers found in the bathroom, asking over and over if they were found in the bathtub or the trash. Martin says they were found in both.

Defense asks if Cherry's shoes were really very clean.

Martin says they weren't fresh out of the store clean but they were very clean with no noticeable markings except for on the toes.

Defense asks if there was finger printing done on the creamer found by Cherry's body. Martin says there was not finger printing for a particular reason. He says there was other testing done on the creamer.

Martin says he bagged Cherry's hands so they could do testing under Cherry's fingernails for skin cells. Martin days he does not know if testing was done on Cherry's fingernails.

Defense begins to go over the pills in the blister pack. Martin confirms there were 21 tablets. Defense asks Martin if he seized a pair of white tennis shoes from Cargill's master bedroom. He says he did.

Defense attorneys ask for a moment to consult each other and the state.

State shows the jury a photo of Cargill's kitchen table that had a number of items on it. Martin says this was the only table in the house and it looks like the things on it had been there a while. State asks if there's some rule that says you can only move a dead body with a sheet and not a table cloth.. Martin says no.

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