Kim Pham Trial, Day Five: Judge Goethals Bars Testimony of Possible Missed Video

defense_opening_statements.jpg
Pool Photo
The defense during opening statements

After days of discussion with the district attorneys and defense, Judge Thomas Goethals will not allow two brothers to testify about a video they say they saw outside the Crosby the night of Kim Pham's death. According to the brothers, the video was more vivid than the others currently in evidence and actually showed a kick connecting with Kim Pham's head.

Whether or not attorneys would have been able to ask the brothers about the video was in question because the Santa Ana Police Department never successfully collected it and the defense had no chance to review it.

Goethals originally planned not to admit the evidence. However, in an opinion published last Friday, a Los Angeles appellate court ruled that testimony about missing, lost, or destroyed "writings" can be admissible.

Both Loyola brothers identified a man in a leopard-print bill hat as the person who showed them the video. The court and attorneys had originally thought the man could not be found, but the detectives revealed that the police believed that they knew who the man was and had received a video from him. That video has already been submitted to evidence.

Pino conceded that the brothers may have been mistaken about how showed them the video. The question about whether or not the video tape exists, in addition to multiple other evidentiary problems led Goethals to reject the testimony.

"I'm not convinced there is another video tape," Goethals said, following a point by point explanation of the evidentiary issues. "There could be, but I'm not convinced that there is. ... I will add that if that was the only issue, I might admit the evidence and invite any parties to submit a special instruction, but given the plethora of issues ... I am changing my tentative from yesterday. I am going to exclude any testimony from either Loyola brother about what they might have seen on another unavailable video tape."

The brothers will still be able to give testimony about what they saw with their own eyes that night.

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17 comments
fishwithoutbicycle
fishwithoutbicycle topcommenter

Please don't tell me that the accused might get to walk because of this missing video footage...

Whophantom
Whophantom

I always thought the case was weak from the beginning. The cops and DA thought they would plead out. My guess is that their will be a hung jury or, acquitted.

20ftjesus
20ftjesus topcommenter

@fishwithoutbicycle 

¡Ay, caramba!  No vid, no eye witness testimony of the head kick...  These girls are gonna walk. 

jillbabe
jillbabe

@fishwithoutbicycle No way they will walk. They may not get life, but they will get at least several years in jail. I do not believe they intentionally tried to kill someone, but kim dying as a result to multiple kicks in the head makes a good case for manslaughter. 



meheecan-cris-doner
meheecan-cris-doner

I would also not assume that there is

a mising video. the police

and the witnesses could simply be lying about this video. it just doesn't make sense how they would lose track of the person that has the video and not obtain the video when they had the chance.

meheecan-cris-doner
meheecan-cris-doner

why not? the way I see it is that Pham is partially to blame for the altercation. in addition, just because a person is on the floor does not eliminate the threat of violence.

jillbabe
jillbabe

@Whophantom How is this a week case? 2 fatties kick a 90 lb girl in the head while she was on the ground. Girl dies as a result. It may not be murder, but it is manslaughter. All the evidence is there. There are plenty of witnesses and videos. They will serve jail time. 

fishwithoutbicycle
fishwithoutbicycle topcommenter

@meheecan-cris-doner 

Hey, I can understand why you wouldn't trust the police to be on the up-and-up...but I'm trying to reserve judgement about the witnesses. 

jillbabe
jillbabe

@meheecan-cris-doner How is this a week case? 2 fatties kick a 90 lb girl in the head while she was on the ground. Girl dies as a result. It may not be murder, but it is manslaughter. 

jillbabe
jillbabe

@meheecan-cris-doner How is this a week case? 2 fatties kick a 90 lb girl in the head while she was on the ground. Girl dies as a result. It may not be murder, but it is manslaughter. All the evidence is there. There are plenty of witnesses and videos. They will serve jail time. 


And are you dumb? Yes, a threat may not be removed once a person is on the ground if a person has a gun or a bomb. In this case, all threats were removed once Kim was on the ground and the 2 fatties had 300 pounds on her. 

fishwithoutbicycle
fishwithoutbicycle topcommenter

@meheecan-cris-doner 

Sorry, but I'm not buying that argument that Brito and Zavala shouldn't face any kind of punishment for their part in Pham's death because she "started it".

20ftjesus
20ftjesus topcommenter

@fishwithoutbicycle 

OT:  I listened to the THHGTTG on audiobook this week.  Kept me entertained on a 10hr. drive. 

meheecan-cris-doner
meheecan-cris-doner

the case is just weak. i feel like if the state picked it up because the images went viral.

fishwithoutbicycle
fishwithoutbicycle topcommenter

@20ftjesus @fishwithoutbicycle 

It's a great book. I suppose it goes without saying it's one of my favorites since I have a homage to it tattooed on my right arm. :-)

Now, my dearest blogmate, let's get back to praying for justice for Kim Pham.

20ftjesus
20ftjesus topcommenter

@fishwithoutbicycle 

Oh freddled gruntbuggly,Thy micturations are to me As plurdled gabbleblotchits on a lurgid bee.

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