Sister Testimony Dismantled, Family Not Coerced on Video MiniBullet #10 MARCH 6 2005 — Michael Jacksons defense attorney Tom Mesereau is methodically dismantling the testimony of the accusers sister, Davellin Arvizo, under cross-examination (cross), which began Friday (March 4 2005) and will continue March 7 2005. Like we and many case observers predicted, the cross and not the direct testimony (direct) would be the true test as to whether the sister was credible or not. Whats more is courtroom observers have come to the conclusion concerning the veracity of her claims themselves while sitting there witnessing it. If you remember, under direct examination many courtroom observers, analysts, and pundits claimed that the sister came off as a credible witness and wondered how and/or if the defense could question some of her claims. After the first day of D. Arvizos testimony, every nut-job, pro-prosecution reporter and hysterical prosecutor claimed it was over, that she sister was credible, and that her testimony was strong. March 4 2005 began for the prosecution with them continuing their direct examination of D. Arvizo. During direct, they played the never before seen video of the Arvizo family saying wonderful things about Michael Jackson, made Feb 19-20 2003. Reportedly, the video is about 65 minutes long. For clarification, the rebuttal video played in court March 4 has never been broadcast. It was NOT a part of the 2003 Jackson rebuttal video Take Two: The Footage You Were Never Meant to See. That Take Two interview was broadcast on the Fox network. As you know, and like MJEOL as well as the fan community have been saying since last year, the prosecutor has yet to explain why Jacksons people would kidnap a family of four to get them to do a video to rehabilitate his image, and then not even show that video to the public. Bradley Miller, who was interviewed by MSNBCs Dan Abrams before he was subpoenaed says the reason why the familys interview wasnt used as part of the Take Two footage was because the mother didnt want to sign a release stating that she gave up her rights to collect money to appear in the video. I guess Jacksons people could kidnap them, forge their signatures on passports, keep them hostage in shopping malls, etc., but couldnt force her to sign the release giving away her right to money ..Jeez. The prosecution is claiming that the family was under duress and was forced to read from a script during that video. However, instead of being victims of prosecution leaks about what the video contained, they actually got to view the DVD themselves. Most analysts couldnt believe that prosecutors would have put this interview into evidence because it didnt look like the family was being coerced at all. Fox News legal analyst Bob Massi says he saw the family praising Jackson, and that they were relaxed and joking around. Hardly the demeanor of someone whos being forced to say things. He says if they were coerced, they would not have been behaving in such an upbeat manner in the video. Massi appeared on Foxs Studio B to give an update. He says that everyone was figuratively scratching their heads as to why in the world the prosecution would introduce this video into evidence. He also reports their demeanor is not like people who are being forced or threatened. Shep refers to Studio B host Shepard Smith. From his March 4 2005 report:
BOB MASSI: I mean, you know, Shep, listen, their whole theory is they’re coerced, they’re intimidated, they’re falsely imprisoned. If you watched this video, you are gonna sit there and say ‘wait a second, they’re relaxed, they’re joking around, they’re having a good time. And you know what the jury has to look to here is what’s the demeanor of the people in the video? Not just the content of what they say, but how are they acting. Now if you’ve got some tough guys on the other side of the camera, that’s sorta standing there looking like ‘Vinnie’ if you will I have to tell you, for truth, you’d be a little bit more scared than what we’re seeing in this video, Shep. (see Studio B: Bob Massi talks about sister cross-examination March 4 2005)
And demeanor, as well as words, are what people watching the video noticed. What it appears the prosecution and this family attempted to do is create a shallow excuse to explain away their words without realizing that their demeanor and behavior would also be considered by observers as well. Massi says that Jackson attorney Tom Mesereau is very good at what he does and that he is tactfully getting the accusers sister to make under oath claims that are simply not believable. For example, Massi reports, Mesereau got the sister to say under oath that none of her family members have ever discussed this case! Seriously, she claimed theyve never discussed anything about this trial reported Massi. More from his report:
BOB MASSI: You know, Mesereau, Shep, is really really good at what he does. And what he is doing is very tactfully through the cross-examination of the 18 year old daughter, he’s being gentle but firm but he’s also getting to the mother. He’s got the girl to admit that they’ve never discussed anything about this trial — even though she talks to her mother everyday, talks to her brother everyday — ‘they’ve never talked about it’.
Fox news correspondent Adam Housley as well confirmed that the general consensus is that the defense was dismantling what some people first thought was a credible witness. Housley reported the following on March 4 2005:
ADAM HOUSLEY: Cross-examination has begun. And by all accounts, Thomas Mesereau Jr., Jackson’s defense attorney, is dismantling what was thought to be the first positive witness for the prosecution: the accuser’s sister, now 18 year old Davellin Arvizo. (see Fox News Live: Adam H. Rpt about Sister Cross-examination March 4 2005)
Housley also reported about the rebuttal video, reportedly 65 minutes long, and how the family appeared. More from his report:
HOUSLEY: But the Bashir rebuttal DVD made by the Jackson team shows the family as being calm. They appear collected, unaffected and not coerced. This evidence for the prosecution could be turned in favor of the defense according to many court observers. Cross-examination began about 2 hours after court went into session today. (see Fox News Live: Adam H. Rpt about Sister Cross-examination March 4 2005)
As for these inconsistencies, Housley said the sister was wavering from her grand jury testimony. As we have been telling you for months and months, the validity and the logic of the familys claims simply dont add up. Weve also said that this family says whatever they think will get them what they want, depending on the circumstances. And we even said — ages before Foxs Roger Friedman –that this so-called case was a malicious, defamatory and felonious set-up (see Accuser’s Family Set [Jackson] Up – FOX). Housley also says some believe the defense may have been trying to assert that their testimony was coached with the help of the prosecution as well. From the report:
HOUSLEY: Thomas Mesereau made some serious points of his own in a very short time. Some of those believe that he’s trying to assert that she’s been coached by the prosecution. That she even called them last night and asked for a DVD to refresh her memory. She is wavering on her grand jury testimony as well. Now Mesereau’s also got her to admit that her family, who she says is very close, and talks all the time, and lives together, has never talked about this case. Many court observers believe the jury will not take that. (see Fox News Live: Adam H. Rpt about Sister Cross-examination March 4 2005)
And observers who have expressed their opinions to MJEOL are all in agreement that it is simply unbelievable to assert that no one in her family has talked about this case. That is simply not credible testimony. They would have talked about this case in some way at some point in time. But the sister claimed, under oath, that they never have. NBCs Mike Taibbi, reporting for MSNBC, also confirms some details about D. Arvizos testimony. He said in his March 4 2005 report that Mesereau was chipping away ay the sisters story and credibility bit by bit. He also reports that Mesereau seems to be setting the stage for future witnesses who will give testimony that contradicts the sisters testimony. From the Taibbi report:
MIKE TAIBBI: Mesereau then taking off bit by bit, incident by incident, witness by witness — witnesses who might be called to challenge this witness’s credibility, basically getting the young woman, the older sister of the accuser, to admit that on several occasions she lied. That she picked the times when she would tell the truth or when she would lie. Suggesting that there are witnesses prepared to say that she and other members of the family told totally different stories. Talked about getting a house in the Hollywood Hills, etc., etc.
So how was the jury taking all of this? Well Taibbi, who was in the courtroom, says he trusts his eyes as a reporter and, thus far, some jurors dont seem to be buying the sisters testimony under cross-examination. More from his March 4 report:
MIKE TAIBBI: The effect of all of this on the jury is hard to read but I believe my own eyes as a reporter and at one point, after the film was shown this morning, and after she began saying ‘I don’t know’, ‘I was young ’, ‘It was too long ago to remember’ one too many times, some jurors started shaking their heads. And when the young woman cried in giving an answer, there were jurors who actually looked away and would not watch her in that emotional display. (see MSNBC : Taibbi report + Ron Richards comments March 4 2005)
So, clearly some are having a hard time with her story. With Mesereaus cross-examination to continue, who knows what else hell get her to admit or alleged under oath. Before court was dismissed Friday, they were about to play the Brad Miller taped interview with the family, which was recorded at Jay Jacksons residence right in the middle of the prosecutions abduction timeline. So they may pick back up with the playing of this tape for the jurors on Monday. Stay tuned. -MJEOL