Day One Concludes

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By Lou Raguse

Opening statements in the Daphne Wright murder trial revealed new,
disturbing details in the murder investigation.

A year ago Darlene VanderGiesen left work, paid her tax preparer,
then never was seen alive again — except, prosecutors say, by her
killer.

Daphne Wright’s lawyers say there’s no evidence she committed a
crime, police gave up on other leads, and prosecutors are twisting
Wright’s jealous statements into death threats.

But state’s attorney Dave Nelson spent an hour in opening statements
previewing the evidence against Wright, which includes these
incriminating notes she wrote just before she was arrested.

Between the days of February 7-10th, 2006, investigators searched the
home of Daphne Wright while she stayed at a hotel. But while there,
she jotted down some information that prosecutors say could only be
known by the killer — the only person who knew Darlene VanderGiesen
was dead.

In Wright’s basement, a detective found Darlene VanderGiesen’s tissue
and bone fragments splattered on a wall, covered by a still-sticky
fresh coat of blue paint.

And before any media outlet reported that information, the murder
suspect wrote: “I’m bored, so I decide to clean up in basement,
paint.”

It goes on to give an explanation for blood in the basement: “Saw
little blood there by steps and smell gas which I was puzzled. I
thought bird’s blood dead on the floor in basement.”

In his opening statement, Nelson told the jury Daphne Wright tried
burning VanderGiesen’s body, which would explain the gas. And while
searching her house, investigators also found receipts for the
plastic bags they say Wright used to wrap VanderGiesen’s body parts
and a receipt for the chainsaw Wright used to dismember her.

Nelson says threatening emails will help show Wright was upset with
VanderGiesen and had motive to kill her.

In the notes she wrote before being arrested — before anyone else
knew VanderGiesen was killed — Wright suggests she was framed.

Nelson also said he’ll call an Ace Hardware employee as a witness to
testify about the chainsaw. Before picking Wright out in a photo
lineup, that employee told police the woman who bought it — two days
after VanderGiesen disappeared — was a heavily built black woman. And
that the woman was deaf.

(( Source: KELOLAND TV ))