It is day 4 of the Baby Kate Trial. Prosecution continues its case. Friends and relatives of Baby Kate's mother Ariel Courtland and her father Sean Phillips who is facing a charge of Unlawful Imprisonment in the baby's disappearance.
Earlier in the day Anna Appledorn, who works for Child Protective Services testified that Courtland came to CPS the day after Kate disappeared. Courtland asked her if she had baby Kate and when Appledorn told her no, she says Courtland immediately left. The next witness was Dan Ruba, a family friend. He said Courtland and Phillips fought a lot and that Phillips started acting strange after he returned from military training.
"We were in the garage once and he had told me and another friend that he could hide a body that nobody could find, and that really struck me as strange," said Ruba.
Later Courtland's mother April Lange took the stand for over an hour. She said Ariel's behavior was confusing in the day's following baby Kate's disappearance. Lange also said the only time she saw Ariel cry during that time was when she saw a picture of Sean Phillips in an orange jumpsuit online, and she tried to get his bond lowered to get him out. She also said that she thinks her daughter is still in love with Phillips.
It was a day of cross examination for Ariel Courtland, the mother of missing baby Kate. Courtland returned to the stand for a second day, after court was delayed this morning by the judge. He says a citizen in the courtroom posted a picture of the jury on facebook. The defense did not wish to pursue a mistrial based on those grounds. Testimony resumed shortly after that, with Courtland fielding questions about her behavior, testimony at prior hearings, and her feelings about the actions of Kate's father, Sean Phillips.
Courtland revealed the nature of her jailhouse conversations with Phillips. On the stand she told the jury that she had begged Phillips for answers, testifying "you were mad at me, not her, but instead you took her and he never answered me. I'd be willing to go back in time and make him take me if I knew that meant Kate was going to be alive and she was okay. I would die for her if that meant she was able to be with us right now."
The defense hammered away at what they say are Courtland's changing stories from previous hearings, pointing out details in her story that they say don't match up with what she had already testified about.
After Courtland completed her testimony, the prosecution called two of her friends to the stand, as well as a 9-1-1 dispatcher.
Court will resume Thursday morning.
Baby Kate's mother, Ariel Courtland, is on the stand for the second day Wednesday.
The Judge ordered no texting in the court around 9am because a bystander took a photo of a juror and posted it on facebook. After the person responsible for posting the picture was located, phones were allowed back into the courtroom.
The Sean Phillips trial continued Tuesday with opening statements, plus the baby's mother took the stand.
In opening arguments Tuesday morning the prosecution and defense outlined their cases for the jury of 9 men and 3 women. The defense early on was trying to plant seeds of doubt in the jury's minds about what lead up to baby Kate's disappearance, while the prosecution talked of a motive for Philips to commit a crime saying he never wanted a baby.
Later baby Kate's mother Ariel Courtland took the stand. She said she took dozens of pictures of her baby everyday and that she loved her baby, but text messages sent between Courtland and the defendant show they talked about putting the baby up for adoption. She also spoke about the moments leading up to Katherine's disappearance, Phillips claiming he was not the father. Tests later proved he is the father.
The 21-year-old is accused of abducting his then 4 1/2 month old daughter Kate Phillips.
Phillips faces a charge of Unlawful Imprisonment, which is a 15 year felony, in the disappearance of his daughter. Police say the baby was last seen on June 29, 2011 when Sean drove off with her.
Ten days are set aside for the trial.
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