Jury Close To Verdict In Studer Trial

By: Robert Borrelli Email
By: Robert Borrelli Email

Saying they were very tired and very close to a verdict, the jury in the Gary Studer double murder trial was sent home at 9:30 Wednesday night.

This was after a day of testimony that included gruesome crime scene and autopsy photos.

They were pictures that Gary Studer looked at with no visible reaction.

Officers describe what they heard moments after Dtuder's arrest.

Offier Chris Haglund of the Bridgman Police Department told the jury, "During the whole time he was yelling, I shot them, I shot her, I shot her. And, he was just repeating that."

Officer Dave McNeil, also with Bridgman Police, "He would make comments like, I had to do it, I love her. I love my children, I had to shoot her.'"

Chief Gary Ruhl of the Baroda Lake Township Police told the court, "He said he loved Tonya and that she was promiscuous, had a boyfriend and he just wanted to be a good father to his children."

Investigators say 22 rounds were fired into Vicki Dewey's home.

Dewey was found mortally wounded on a nearby patio.

Her daughter, Tonya Goble Studer, was found near a back bedroom, shot four times in the head.

Gary Studer's attorney Ernie White says Studer killed in the heat of the moment.

It was not something he planned. "All that evidence fits into manslaughter, that's exactly what this is. Now, the prosecutor has charged home invasion and felony firearms and I think that evidence shows he's guilty of home invasion and felony firearm, but he's not guilty of murder."

But Gary Studer appeared confused on whether to testify in his own trial telling Judge Charles Lasata, "I don't know what to do,
Sir."

In the end he decided not to take the stand.

In fact, Defense Attorney Ernie White did not call any witnesses at all in a trial where the verdict has yet to be reached.

Jurors will reconvene at 10 o'clock Thursday morning.


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