Defense rests in Susan Wright's trial

October 28, 2010 3:58:33 PM PDT
The defense has rested in the resentencing trial of Susan Wright -- the woman who stabbed her husband nearly 200 times. The one witness we were anticipating hearing from -- Susan herself -- did not take the stand. It's a shocker that Susan Wright will not get a chance to tell her story to the jury. The defense rested after the prosecution spent much of the day cross-examining the defense's own witness, trying to show the jury inconsistencies in Susan Wright's story by using her own words from her first trial.

Prosecutor Connie Spence said, "With his arm raised and he says, 'Die!'"

Spence was repeating for the jury what Susan Wright testified happened the night she fatally stabbed her husband Jeffrey back in 2003. The prosecution used Susan's own words to try to point out inconsistencies that the prosecution says does not add up to claims of abuse.

Testimony showed that Susan Wright was interviewed days after the murder by Harris County clinical psychologist Dr. Gerome Brown. Spence read what Susan Wright said about the night in 2003 when she killed Jeffrey Wright. It included how Susan Wright argued with and then had sex with her husband, then went to the kitchen to get a knife.

"She told you that she felt like she was watching herself and then she started stabbing him while he was asleep," Spence said.

Not consistent, says the prosecution, with Susan's claims her husband was awake and threatened to kill her. Spence then asked Dr. Brown if Susan was faking her story.

Spence asked, "Is it possible that she was playing you? That she was, you know, trying to help herself that day with her defense psychologist?"

Dr. Brown responded, "It's always possible."

Having the jury believe Susan Wright's claims of abuse is essential, says KTRK legal analyst Joel Androphy, to prove she acted in 'sudden passion' and possibly get her sentence reduced. However, he also says the prosecution may have scored some points with the jury by using the defense's own witness to establish those inconsistencies.

Androphy said, "Use the expert, not necessarily to get expert testimony, but to attack the credibility of Susan Wright by poking holes in her story, getting the jury to a point where they're disbelieving her before they've had an opportunity to try to believe her."

The jury will not get the opportunity to hear Susan Wright tell her story, with the defense resting without putting her on the stand.


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