What they had found were two dead bodies, a man and a woman, both naked and both with two shots to the head. They were in her bedroom and apparently had been caught in the act. She was married to someone else, as was he. At some time between 2:00 and 3:00 p.m. on January 17, 1995, the defendant, sitting right over there at the defense table, had allegedly barged in and found them. He was married to the woman and knew the man well.
Murder alone does not trigger a capital case. Murder plus something else is needed—robbery, rape, kidnapping, killing a cop or a child—the list was long.
The Judge. Her name was Claudia McDover and she was forty years old. The previous year she had defeated an eighteen-year incumbent by a thousand votes. This was her first capital murder case; indeed, it was her first murder case of any variety.
The crime-scene photos, regardless of how grisly, were always admitted.