Friday, February 15, 2008
Request for Mistrial Denied !!!
CANTON, Ohio — A former police officer who tearfully told jurors he accidentally killed his pregnant lover was convicted Friday of murdering her and their unborn child.Bobby Cutts Jr. could face the death penalty. He had claimed he accidentally killed Jessie Davis by putting an elbow to her throat, then panicked.
Cutts, 30, was convicted of aggravated murder in the death of the nearly full-term female fetus, which carries the possible death penalty. Jurors will return later this month to weigh a sentencing recommendation.
The jury found him not guilty of aggravated murder in Davis’ death, a count that includes intent to kill with prior calculation. But they convicted him of a lesser charge of murder in her death.
Defense attorneys asked Stark County Common Pleas Judge Charles E. Brown Jr. to declare a mistrial because the differing verdicts on the two counts.
Brown rejected the request, saying the allegations involved separate individuals: Davis and the fetus.
Jurors reached their decision on their fourth day of deliberations. Cutts sat with his hands on his lap and held his head erect without emotion as the verdicts were read.
Prosecutors told the jury that Cutts killed Davis, 26, last June at her Lake Township home to get out of child support payments for a fourth child.
The couple’s 2 1/2-year-old son, Blake, who was found home alone, gave investigators their first clues to his mother’s disappearance when he said, “Mommy’s crying. Mommy broke the table. Mommy’s in the rug,” and, later, “Daddy’s mad.”
For more than a week, Cutts, then an officer on the Canton police force, denied knowledge of her whereabouts as thousands searched in the area. He finally led authorities to the body, wrapped in a comforter and dumped in a park about 20 miles from her home.
Cutts testified for four hours Monday, saying tearfully [continued]