For Kiya's Challenge: EARN: LEGAL MERIT BADGE
|Your Honor, members of the jury: Today you have been called upon to decide the fate of my client, Mrs. Nora Baker. Take a good look at my client, ladies and gentlemen. Fate has been conservative...for Mrs. Baker, at age 35, is not an attractive woman. I intend no cruelty: Justice may be blind, but sadly, the world is not. She has a lazy eye. She has what my father would call piano legs: she has no ankles! She's frumpy. Her complexion is reddish-orange and her face is pock-marked with scars. Her hair is frizzy and already gray. My esteemed colleague argues that Ms Baker brutally attacked the deceased out of jealousy, simply because the victim was a beautiful woman.
I call your attention to Exhibit A; a photograph of Ms. VanStillica on the red carpet. Note the tawny tresses, the designer gown, the slim legs, the lovely skin, the flashing eyes, the wide smile . . .Enchanting, isn't she? On the outside, perhaps.
Now remember the life styles of these two women. My client, Mrs. Baker, is known as generous soul. She lovingly nursed her husband as his cancer slowly made her a widow. She regularly tithes a tenth of her meager income as a convenience store cashier to her church. She helps out in the local soup kitchen on 14th Street two days a week. She, is generous to a fault, pleasant, honest, and feeds stray cats. Now, look again at Mrs. Baker, and think about "beauty" as you do.
Ms. VanStillica, on the other side of the coin, had been divorced seven times, had trouble keeping help in her forty room mansion because of her temperament, and had recently attacked a photographer, scratching at his eyes for taking an unflattering picture of her at the beach. Last year she was audited by the federal government for tax evasion. Need I continue? Yes? Very well, then. She had a habit of drinking heavily and had spent time in drug rehab. She was nortorious for throwing wild parties. She was not, by any stretch of the imagination ,what one would call a nice person.
The only connection the two women had was Ms Baker's occasional employment by the deceased as a maid to clean up after one of her parties.
The crime scene was the inside of a locked room attached to Ms VanStillica’s bedroom. The room, referred to as ‘her ego room,’ by Ms VanStillica in the July 2009 edition of Vanity Fair, was an eight foot by eight foot cube with all four walls, the ceiling and floor completely mirrored.
Yes, Mrs. Baker’s DNA was found on the scene. Yes, her fingerprints were on both the inside and outside of the door latch. Mrs. Baker had washed the mirrors the day prior tothe incident. She admits to spitting on her cleaning rag to clean away a smear on the mirror.
When Ms VanStillica did not ring for breakfast the morning of March 21st of this year, her staff was not immediately concerned. Mrs. Demple, the housekeeper, stated on the witness stand that, “The staff was relieved that no one had to deal with her yet.”
They were all aware that the evening before when Ms VanStillica had returned home, that she was in “a terrible mood” and had been dumped by her potential husband Number Eight in a fight which had made the 11:00 News. He, Mr. Rand Worthington, as he reiterated on the stand, had called her a ‘vicious tramp, a no good piece of baggage’ and had stated that she was ‘totally worthless as a human being.’ Upon running to her mother, who was also at the event, her mother had stated that her daughter was ‘an embarrassment.’ Neither of these two people stand here accused of this crime. Her current will, unchanged since her divorce from husband Number Six, leaves all her assets to him. He is also absent, a free man, accused of nothing, unlike my client.
Now I draw your attention to Exhibits B through G.These photos are, indeed, gruesome. The deceased was locked inside the mirrored room. There is no way to lock it from the outside. Police had to break into the room upon finding Ms VanStillica missing, and the door to the room locked.
Ms VanStillica is shown naked, huddled on the floor in a pool of her blood. Numerous (643 to be precise) strands of her hair had been pulled from her scalp and lay about the room in clumps.. There are scratches gouged into the skin of her breasts, her throat, and her stomach. Physical evidence shows that these gouges self-inflicted, herself, as there are flakes of her nail polish (O.P.I. Guilty Pleasures Scarlet) within the wounds. Her blood is smeared on the mirrored walls. Both her eyes are gouged out. The Coroner stated that the cause of death was a heart attack that occurred after her eyes had been removed and due to the loss of blood.
Now to Exhibits H and I. Please note the scratch marks on the photographer’s face as compared to the ones on Ms. VanStillica’s face. Note the odd spacing due to her crooked pinkie finger is evident in both photos.
I submit to you, that there is insufficient evidence to convict Mrs. Nora Baker of this crime. I do, however, offer my conclusions as to what did occur that evening.
I submit that Ms VanStillica upon returning home after her disastrous evening where all her flaws and foibles were made visible to both the press and her supposedly adoring public, disrobed, and went into her mirrored room. She locked the door, turned around, and quite possibly, for the first and last time ever, actually saw herself. The defense rests.