John Dean - Newspaper Reporter - Defendants Evidence

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John Dean - Newspaper Reporter - Defendants Evidence

Postby admin » October 31st, 2010, 6:21 pm

THE COURT: The defendant Gertrude Baniszewski may present her evidence. Bring in the jury.



THE COURT: Defendant Gertrude may present her evidence at this time.



JOHN DEAN , a witness called on behalf of defendant Gertrude Baniszewski,
being duly sworn by the court, testified as follows:


Q. State your name, sir?

A. John Dean.

Q. What is your business or occupation?

A. Newspaper reporter.

Q. For how long, sir?

A. Four years.

Q. What newspaper?

A. The Indianapolis Star three years, Associated Press one year.

Q. What are your duties as a newspaper reporter?

A. Make tours of the City-County Building to find anything interesting to write newspaper stories about and write them.

Q. You have had this position three or four years?

A. Yes.

Q. Prior to that, Mr. Dean, what did you do?

A. I was a college student at Indiana University.

Q. Did you take journalism?

A. Yes, sir.

Q. When did you graduate?

A. 1962.

Q. In your course of duties with the newspaper, did you ever write any feature stories?

A. Yes, sir.

Q. Beginning when, what year?

A. 1963.

Q. Up to and including the present time?

A. Yes, sir.

Q. Are you at the present time engaged in writing feature articles about this trial?

A. Yes, sir.

Q. For what paper?

A. The Indianapolis Star.

Q. And when did you first become cognizant of this case?

A. The day it occurred.

Q. When was that?

A. October 26, 1965.

Q. And immediately upon your learning about this case, what did you do with reference to this case?

MR. NEW: The State objects.

THE COURT: Objection sustained.

Q. Did you ever observe any proceedings in this case in Municipal Court, yes or no?

MR. NEW: We object.

THE COURT: Objection sustained.

Q. Did you ever observe the defendant Gertrude Baniszewski on October 26, 1965?

A. No.

Q. Did you observe her October 27?

A. No.

Q. When was the first time you ever saw her?

A. Sometime in December.

Q. December 1965, where?

A. In this courtroom.

Q. In this courtroom?

A. Yes, sir.

Q. How long was she in this courtroom at the time you saw her?

A. Oh, I don't recall. It was probably less than an hour.

Q. Less than an hour?

A. Yes.

Q. Were you ever permitted to have an interview with her?

A. I never sought one.

Q. You never sought one. When is the next time you saw her after December 1965?

A. I saw her several times in December and in January, 1966.

Q. Where in January?

A. The same place, every place I seen her was in this courtroom.

Q. February - did you see her in Criminal Two?

A. Yes. - I don't recall specifically.

Q. Did you see her in March 1966?

A. Probably. I don't recall specifically.

Q. January '66, and an hour or less?

A. More than an hour during the Habeas corpus hearing.

Q. Would you say two hours?

A. All day.

Q. That was January 1966?

A. January 12.

Q. And did you see her in February 1966, did you say?

A. Probably. I don't recall.

Q. You don't recall the incident or the reason?

A. There have been many pleading heard in this court and I don't recall specifically.

Q. How about March 1966, did you see her then?

A. Probably.

Q. You can't recall the specific incident?

A. No, sir.

Q. Were you here at the very start of this trial?

A. Yes, sir.

Q. Did you see the defendant in this courtroom?

A. Yes.

Q. From the very inception of impaneling the jury, right?

A. Yes.

Q. You sat in this courtroom all during the taking of evidence?

A. Yes, sir.

Q. You were here during the opening statements were you?

A. Yes sir.

Q. And you - would you say Mr. Dean that you were here while every witness for the State testified, would you say that?

A. Yes, sir.

Q. Were you here when Dr. Kebel testified?

A. Yes, sir.

Q. And were you in a position sitting in this courtroom to observe the defendant?

A. Not very well.

Q. You did see her?

A. I sat behind her.

Q. You sat behind her. You heard the testimony of all the State's witnesses, I think you said?

A. Yes, sir.

Q. You made notes, some of them did you?

A. Yes, sir.

Q. Did you hear the testimony of Dr. Kebel with reference to the hypothetical question I propounded to him?

A. Yes, sir.

Q. Now, basing your answer on what you testified to, Mr. Dean, have you ever before in your experience as a newspaper reporter and journalist seen such evidence of sadism in your life?

MR. NEW: We object.

THE COURT: Sustained.

Q. Have you? Do you agree with Dr. Kebel that such a person has lost contact with reality?

MR. NEW: We object.

THE COURT: Sustained.

Q. Do you agree with Dr. Kebel that it was the work of a mad man?

MR. NEW: We object.

THE COURT: Sustained.

Q. Have you formed an opinion as to the sanity of the defendant Gertrude Baniszewski in this case?

MR. NEW: We object. He said he had never talked with her.

MR. ERBECKER: You don't have to talk.

THE COURT: Overruled.

A. Yes.

Q. And what is your opinion?

MR. NEW: We object.

THE COURT: Ladies and Gentlemen of the Jury and Alternate Jurors, please retire to the jury room for a few minutes. During this recess, don't talk among yourselves and don't let anyone talk to you about this case or any subject connected therewith. Don't form or express any opinion on the case till it is finally submitted to you. Jury and Alternate Jurors are excused.


THE COURT: On your motion, Mr. Erbecker there has been a separation of witnesses and the State is not allowed to have anybody here to watch and see what the proceedings are. Now you are asking a witness who has been in the courtroom all the time for his opinion on the case after you specifically made a motion for separation of witnesses. What shall the judge do?

MR. ERBECKER: I will say for the record he was not subpoenaed till this morning. He testimony could not conceivably be detrimental to the State. They made no objection to it up to here. If the defendant is deprived of this or similar testimony, taking into consideration that she has been incarcerated since October 26, and deprived of due process of law -

THE COURT: Does that give the State an opportunity to subpoena all the witnesses seated in the courtroom?

MR. ERBECKER: They have subpoenaed practically everybody. I would not object to anything as to the number of witnesses they got. It would not do any good anyway. I have never objected to any witnesses they brought up.

THE COURT: You asked for the separation. It is your defendant that asked for the separation. I was only wondering if it was only a separation for the State and none for the defendant. It opens up an unlimited amount of testimony in the case of everybody in the courtroom.

MR. NEW: The State formally objects to anybody who was present during the testimony of any witness from the beginning of this trial till the present time. We certainly feel the defendant is bound by his own motion the same as the State of Indiana. For a newspaper man here on an assignment to cover the trial to give an opinion or express an opinion is invading the province of the jury as to whether she is sane or insane. If somebody talked to her at or about the time of trial, certainly it is relevant. To subpoena people in the courtroom who heard the testimony is highly improper and in violation of his own motion for separation of witnesses. The State objects.

MR. ERBECKER: For the purpose of the record, Your Honor, the State introduced evidence as to the sanity of the defendant here, without objection. She has been held without bond. It would be impossible to get the type of witness we would like to. No harm will result to the State of Indiana. They have access to anybody they wish can talk to anybody they want to. He was not subpoenaed till this morning. He is not divulging anything that is not common knowledge. I don't think he has any special knowledge that is not accessible to anybody else.

THE COURT: I am going to sustain the State's objection to the question for the reason that it is a date later than alleged in the indictment. I am overlooking for the moment - and for the moment only - the proposition that he has been in the courtroom and State's witnesses were not permitted in the courtroom. For the reason, he is incompetent to answer the question, the objection will be sustained. Bring out the jury.


THE COURT: Objection sustained. Next question, please.

MR. ERBECKER: No further questions.


THE COURT: Next witness. I think Mr. Hammond is here. See if he is.

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