Adam Lee Hall trial goes to jury after final arguments
SPRINGFIELD -- The murder case against of Adam Lee Hall is in the hands of the jury.
Before the panel of nine women and three men in Hampden County Court were given the case on Monday, they heard the final arguments of Berkshire District Attorney David F. Capeless and Hall's attorney, Alan J. Black.
While Capeless repeated his assertion that Hall participated in "depraved, hate-filled attacks" against the three victims whose dismembered bodies were later discovered, Black insisted there was no conclusive evidence tying Hall to the crime.
"What they're alleging is Mr. Hall took a bunch of weapons and chopped up three bodies," Black told the jurors. "And they found no blood, no DNA of the victims on him or any of his possessions. Nothing, nothing, nothing."
Black told them there were 1,216 items taken by police in this case -- more than 300 the jury would be able to examine -- plus many more items that were looked at and not seized.
"You have a bunch of physical evidence that can't be tied in any way to Mr. Hall," he said.
The kind of case the prosecution had was characterized by their spending two hours at trial talking about Hall's co-defendant, Caius Veiovis, and another man shopping at Home Depot and only buying a screwdriver, Black said. He then launched into a discussion about Veiovis, who has facial tattoos and horn implants.
"The picture of Mr. Veiovis kept being shown," the attorney said. "He's an unusual looking guy."
He said they also showed pictures of his apartment with items that could "show maybe he was involved in some kind of Satanic cult, but they didn't take most of them. They showed you these things because they don't have a case."
Black attacked the credibility of many the prosecution's witnesses, who he said were either co-defendants of Hall or had other reasons to lie.
"Look at all those witnesses, they all have a stake. Were they scared of Mr. Hall or a long jail sentence?" he asked.
Several of the witnesses had lied to police on prior occasions and now expected the jury to believe them, he said.
The prosecution's main witness in the murder case, David Casey, knew where the burial site was, had lied to police and testified to owning an old military sidearm, according to Black. If Hall knew where the keys to the excavator were and how to use the machine as Casey had testified, why would Hall even require Casey's help, asked Black.
Black said they found traces of blood in Casey's truck.
"They didn't test it. Why? I don't know," he said.
Black also reminded the jury about testimony regarding a loud fight that had taken place at David Glasser's apartment possibly over drugs and money that had happened the afternoon before Glasser, Edward Frampton and Robert Chadwell disappeared.
"In conclusion, when you look at all the evidence without passion, without sympathy, without emotion I would ask you to find the defendant not guilty because the commonwealth did not prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt," Black told the jury.
In his closing, Capeless said the lack of forensic evidence wasn't an impediment to the jury finding Hall guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
The DA said it all began with the 2009 case in which Hall allegedly beat Glasser with a baseball bat and forced him to sign over his truck to him, and escalated from there with Hall becoming obsessed with Glasser.
"That's where it all started. Trying to diminish Glasser. Until his frustration leads him to take that final step," Capeless said.
He told the jurors they could consider the 2009 and 2010 case, in which Hall allegedly tried to frame Glasser for a fake armed robbery in Upstate New York, as evidence in the murder case, and vice versa.
"He wouldn't have needed to go so far to kidnap and murder Glasser and his friends if he had successfully framed him," said the DA.
As for a lack of DNA or other forensic evidence, Capeless said he told the jury from the start there wouldn't be any of this type of evidence presented. Hall and his two co-defendants took "simple measures" like wearing gloves and cleaning or destroying evidence, he said.
"It's more common not to have this type of evidence," he told the jury. "That is reality."
He said evidence of where the killings took place or having the weapons used were not requirements to prove the case, calling it a "technicality."
Capeless told the jury that none of the witnesses who were Hall's co-defendants had a reason to hurt Glasser, but Hall did.
At one point during Capeless' final argument, Hall shouted out that he had been "20 miles away at a f
ing barbeque." This took place when the DA was telling the jury Hall had been at Casey's house in Canaan, N.Y., just after the killings. Judge C. Jeffrey Kinder told the defendant to refrain from making outbursts.
The jury deliberated for a little more than an hour Monday. Deliberations continue today.
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