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John Byrd, Witness for the State


THE COURT: Next witness, please.

MR. PANOSH: John Byrd, please.

JOHN BYRD, being first duly sworn, testified as follows during DIRECT EXAMINATION by MR. PANOSH:

Q    Would you state your name, sir.

A    My name is John Byrd, B-y-r-d.

Q    And you're a special agent with the State Bureau of Investigation; is that correct?

A    Yes, sir.

Q    Do you have a specialty with the State Bureau of Investigation?

A    Yes, I do. My specialty is a forensic impressions analyst. I'm a latent print analyst. In other words, I


look at fingerprints and palm prints.

MR. HATFIELD: It's no big deal, but is he on the witness list?

THE COURT: He's not on mine.

MR. PANOSH: Your Honor, I can explain.

THE COURT: Well, approach the bench a minute. (The following proceedings were had by the Court and all three counsel at the bench, out of the hearing of the jury.)

MR. PANOSH: The gasoline was tested -- the gasoline can was tested for fingerprints by Agent Stills, who is deceased. And until just the other day, that we weren't aware of who they would send to testify as to this in his place. The fingerprint analysis was negative.

THE COURT: Is that the only thing he's going to testify to -‑

MR.  PANOSH: Yeah.

THE COURT: -- just the gas can?

MR. PANOSH: The gas can, and fingerprints were negative.

THE COURT: And he was -- did he do the report? MR. PANOSH: He's testifying to the report of the deceased agent.

THE COURT: All right.

I'm going to allow it in, gentlemen. I don't think it hurts you either way.


(Proceedings continued in open court.)

Q    (By Mr. Panosh) Agent Byrd, have you been recognized as an expert in the field of fingerprint analysis and comparison?

A    Yes, I have.

MR. PANOSH: We'd submit him as an expert, Your Honor.

MR. LLOYD: No objection, Your Honor.

THE COURT: Based upon the stipulation, the Court finds the witness, John Byrd, to be an expert in the field of latent print identification, and by training, education and experience, may express an opinion in that area.

Q    Now, on or about October the 10th of 1995, was a red plastic gasoline can submitted to the State Bureau of Investigation for fingerprint analysis?

A    Yes, it was.

Q    And who did the fingerprint analysis?

A    The agent who completed the analysis was Roger Stills, S-t-i-l-l-s.

Q    And it's my understanding he's deceased; is that correct?

A    Yes, sir, he is.

Q    And based upon his reports, were you able to determine -- was the State Bureau of Investigation able to determine whether or not there were latent prints on the gasoline can



A    Yes, he did.

Q    And what did he determine?

A    There were no latent prints obtained from the item, the red plastic gas can.

Q    Showing you 94, does that report detail his findings?

A    Yes, it does.

MR. PANOSH: We'd seek to introduce 94. And no further questions.

THE COURT: The Court'll allow the introduction of State's Exhibit Number 94.

MR. HATFIELD: No questions.

MR. LLOYD: No questions.

THE COURT: You may step down, sir.

(The witness left the witness stand.)



Published August 15, 2006.  Report broken links or other problems.

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