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Thread: Trial under way in deadly 2003 Calif. wildfire SENTENCED to Death

  1. #1
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    Trial under way in deadly 2003 Calif. wildfire SENTENCED to Death

    http://www.centurylink.net/news/read...SNWU00L2_UNEWS

    SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. (AP) A prosecutor said Monday a man who was angry about being thrown out of a house where his family was staying was guilty of murdering five people who had heart attacks after he deliberately torched a hillside and started a raging wildfire that destroyed hundreds of homes in Southern California.

    Supervising Deputy District Attorney Robert Bulloch flashed picture after picture of burning forests and firefighters as he delivered his opening statement at the trial of Rickie Lee Fowler.

    "This fire was deliberately set," Bulloch said. "It was set maliciously by this defendant, Rickie Fowler. He did it because he was angry. He did it because he was selfish. He did it because he wanted revenge."
    ------

    Fowler has pleaded not guilty to arson and five counts of murder. He could face the death penalty if convicted after the trial that's expected to last a month.

    In his opening statement, defense attorney Don Jordan raised questions about whether the Old Fire or another wildfire raging in the mountainous area east of Los Angeles caused the stress that led to the heart attacks.
    -------

    In his opening statement, Jordan said his client never told investigators he was the one who ignited the wildfire.

    "Mr. Fowler never, ever, ever, ever even hinted at, never ever said he lit the fire," the attorney told jurors.

    The suspected driver of the van, Martin Valdez Jr., was later shot and killed in an unrelated incident in the town of Muscoy.

    While in prison awaiting trial, Fowler was convicted of sodomizing a jail inmate and sentenced to three, 25-years-to-life prison terms.


    More at link.....
    Last edited by Salem; 03-10-2013 at 12:41 AM.

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  3. #2
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    Family friend testifies on arson suspect's words, behavior in 2003 Old Fire trial

    http://www.dailybulletin.com/breakin...-2003-old-fire

    SAN BERNARDINO - A longtime family friend of the man accused of starting the Old Fire testified Wednesday that the suspected arsonist made statements linking him to the deadly blaze on more than one occasion.

    Michelle Hernandez, who has known Rickie Lee Fowler for most of his life, spent the majority of the day talking about a conversation the two of them had after the 2003 fire had already started burning the hillside near Old Waterman Canyon.

    According to police transcripts, Fowler yelled and screamed, "That's why I started these fires. See what you made me do? That's why I burned John's house down" - apparently referring to being previously kicked out of two different households. ..............

    The prosecution is expected to continue questioning Fowler's friends and family members today , including the man whose home was the suspected target of the fire. ............

  4. #3
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    Update on articles....

    Coroner: Stress from fire, not pre-existing medical conditions, caused deaths of Old Fire victims

    http://www.dailybulletin.com/ci_2108...lybulletin.com

    SAN BERNARDINO - The county's chief medical examiner, Dr. Frank Sheridan, testified Monday that the deaths of the five victims of the 2003 Old Fire were caused by stress from the fire - and it was his opinion that they otherwise would not have died when they did.

    Sheridan testified in San Bernardino Superior Court about the health history and cause of death of each victim - Charles Cunningham, James McDermith, Chad Williams, Robert Taylor and Ralph McWilliams.

    They had pre-existing health conditions prior to the fire, but Sheridan believes the fire contributed to the men's deaths.

    -------

    Witness testifies Fowler was using drugs and was very angry

    http://www.dailybulletin.com/ci_2106...lybulletin.com

    The alleged target of the 2003 Old Fire, Upper Waterman Canyon resident John Aylward, testified Thursday that suspected arsonist Rickie Lee Fowler had stayed at his home shortly before the fire, but Aylward had asked Fowler to leave.

    "At that point in time, Rickie was using a lot of drugs... he was a very angry person at the time," Aylward testified today during Fowler's trial in San Bernardino Superior Court.
    ------

    Great aunt testifies about her recorded talks with Old Fire suspect

    http://www.dailybulletin.com/ci_2109...lybulletin.com

    In a pair of recorded jailhouse conversations with his great aunt, suspected Old Fire arsonist Rickie Lee Fowler denied starting the 2003 Old Fire, but he admitted playing games with law enforcement -- to a point, according to trial testimony today.

    Elizabeth Rehkop, Fowler's great aunt, testified today during his trial in San Bernardino Superior Court that, after Fowler was arrested, she called police and told them she thought he was involved in the wildfire.

    At one point in the conversation, Fowler told Rehkop that he didn't want to incriminate himself any more than he already had, and Rehkop testified that statement made her think that Fowler had more to say.


    More at links....

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    Prosecution in the Old Fire trial rests

    http://www.dailybulletin.com/ci_2110...lybulletin.com

    SAN BERNARDINO - Jurors in the trial of suspected Old Fire arsonist Rickie Lee Fowler were taken Wednesday morning to key scenes in the case.
    Prosecution and defense attorneys, as well as sheriff's deputies, joined the jury for the bus ride to the site near Waterman Canyon where the 2003 fire started. ...........

    In the recorded conversations Fowler tells the special agents that a friend, Martin Valdez Jr., threw a flare into brush on the side of the mountain, starting the fire. Fowler continued to say he didn't start it.

    -------

    Detective testifies about efforts to find those involved in Old Fire ignition

    SAN BERNARDINO - From the start the Old Fire was investigated as arson, officials said Monday. .............

    Then, in January 2004, someone contacted the sheriff's department with information that put Rickie Lee Fowler - the suspected arsonist - on their radar..............

    Defense attorney Donald Jordan started his case Monday, calling to the witness stand several people who were loosely connected to Fowler and the incidents surrounding the fire.

    Five witnesses testified about background details like the suspect vehicle and day-of-the-fire schedules.............

  6. #5
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    Suspected Old Fire arsonist denies involvement during polygraph test

    http://www.dailybulletin.com/ci_2114...lybulletin.com

    SAN BERNARDINO -- Months after the 2003 Old Fire raged through San Bernardino Mountain communities, the suspected arsonist firmly denied any involvement with the blaze........

    But in February 2004, he told law enforcement officers and a polygrapher that he was not the firestarter. .......

    --------
    After failing polygraph, Fowler admits being present at start of 2003 Old Fire

    http://www.dailybulletin.com/ci_2115...lybulletin.com

    .........Fowler was strapped to the polygraph in February 2004 and asked a series of questions. When it was over, Fowler was told he failed the exam - specifically the part where the defendant said he was not present at the time the fire was started.

    "On the questions - were you present when the fire was started? - When you said `no,' that's not true. That's the part you failed, " said Robert Heard, the polygrapher, in a recording.

    "I wasn't there," Fowler responded. ..............

    Fowler continued to deny being there.

    "I know you were there. You know you were there," Heard said, adding that law enforcement had an eyewitness placing Fowler at the Old Fire.........

    He eventually told Heard he was sitting up in the van, talking on a cell phone, when the fire started. Fowler also told the polygrapher two other people were in the van.

    But he refused to say who started the fire or how it was started because that would incriminate him........

    -------
    UPDATE: Law professor testifies at Old Fire trial about false confessions

    http://www.dailybulletin.com/ci_2116...lybulletin.com

    ........Professor Richard Leo of the University of San Francisco School of Law said some people who confess are not guilty but that number is relatively low.

    "We do not know what percentage of confessions are false," Leo testified.

    He said that especially on highly publicized cases, people sometimes falsely take credit.

    "Some people just want to be known as the baddest person of all?" Defense Attorney Don Jordan asked.

    "Correct," Leo said. ............

    Fowler insisted he did not start the fire.

    In 2008 Fowler told U.S. Forest Service special agents he was on the side of Waterman Canyon, holding a road flare in his hand - with intentions to start a fire - when a friend took it from him, lit it and threw it onto the mountainside.

  7. #6
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    2004 Fowler interview with law enforcement wraps Tuesday testimony

    http://www.dailybulletin.com/ci_2120...lybulletin.com

    .......Over the past few days Don Jordan, who represents Fowler, had been playing audio recordings from February 2004, where the defendant was brought in to talk to authorities about the deadly fire........

    "In the beginning of the two-day interview, he told me he knew nothing about the fire," Palomino testified on Tuesday. "I took that at face value. But an hour later, it comes to light - Fowler said he was there."

    Palomino said that started a gradual progression of bits of truth, which came out in two days of interviews.

    "I had to try and decipher what was the truth and what wasn't the truth," he said.

    "Mr. Fowler is very street smart, he's very manipulative and his statements were given for a self-serving reason," Palomino said. .........

    Fowler later admitted to being present when the fire was set.

    "Why did the fire start?" Palomino asked him.

    "Accidental, probably, it was accidental," Fowler said. "It was started, but it wasn't meant to start the way it started. OK, it was lit with intent but not intent to burn a mountain down. It wasn't lit to go ahead and burn (stuff) down."

    Jordan said that was the last interview with Fowler for two years. A sheriff's interview from 2006 is expected to be heard in court Wednesday.

    *******

    Former detective used lying techniques in hopes of garnering confession

    http://www.dailybulletin.com/ci_2121...lybulletin.com

    .......Sgt. David Burgess, who testified Wednesday, was a detective at the time of the 2006 interview. He and sheriff's Sgt. Frank Bell questioned Fowler for a final time before the case was turned over to the District Attorney's Office.

    In the recorded interview played in court, Burgess told Fowler that new evidence had come to light that painted a different picture than the one Fowler had given two years before.

    "We're just about to finish this case and submit it to the DA, so we had a couple of questions we wanted to clear up," Burgess told Fowler.

    The detective also told Fowler that a witness saw someone get out of a van and light the Old Fire with a flare. That witness later circled Fowler's booking photo when asked to identify a suspect, Burgess said during the interview.


    More at links......

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    Prosecution focuses on information withheld in Old Fire investigation

    http://www.dailybulletin.com/ci_2122...lybulletin.com

    SAN BERNARDINO - Information concealed from the news media and the public helped lead authorities to believe Rickie Lee Fowler was involved in the deadly Old Fire, a prosecution witness said Thursday............

    Bobby Dean, who testified Thursday in San Bernardino Superior Court, said it is a technique investigators use in cases with very little physical evidence.......

    The information authorities didn't release was the exact location of where the Old Fire started, that the suspect vehicle ran a stop sign on the way down the mountain shortly after the fire started and that a flare was used to start the blaze.

    Some of those details came out during interviews and conversations with Fowler, Dean testified..............

    During the investigation, authorities initially hypothesized that Fowler went up the mountain that day to rob his godfather, John Aylward.

    "They needed a van to carry any property - drugs, guns, or whatever else was in Mr. Aylward's house that Rickie wanted to take," Dean testified.

    At some point, Fowler and the people with him decided not to commit the robbery, he said.

    Authorities said they later received information that changed their theory about Fowler's alleged motive.

    The defendant had allegedly told his great aunt that he stashed stolen drugs at Aylward's house and he planned to burn the residence down because he thought it might get drug dealers off his back, Dean said.

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    Old Fire suspect opts not to testify, jury to receive case on Wednesday

    http://www.dailybulletin.com/ci_2124...lybulletin.com

    SAN BERNARDINO - Testimony in the trial of accused Old Fire arsonist Rickie Lee Fowler came to a close Monday after the San Bernardino man decided not to testify on his own behalf.
    San Bernardino Superior Court Judge Michael A. Smith cautioned the 30-year-old San Bernardino man that he could open himself up to cross-examination by prosecutors if he took the stand.

    "Even though you may feel you want to explain things to the jury, it may not come out the way you want them to understand it," Smith said.

    Fowler eventually decided against the idea after meeting with his attorneys.

    "I'm not going to testify, your honor," he said. ...............

    The case resumes Wednesday with closing arguments.

  10. #9
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    Tweets from defense closing...read from bottom up:

    http://twitter.com/iecourtsnow


    Lori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense : #fowler never believed in credibility of polygraph


    21hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Even the alternates are bugging out

    21hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense: sheriffs had tunnel vision on this case

    21hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Some people confess to high profile crimes for notoriety.

    22hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense: #fowler admitted to being a tweaker

    22hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    #fowler was trying to claim things but he's wrong. #fowler made story up

    22hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense: Ricky was looking like "*****" according to Valdez at time of #oldfire... They were smoking sherms together

    22hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense: #fowler friend Valdez was living in Muscoy at time of #oldfire

    22hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense : van was never stolen

    22hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    #Fowler was playing games with detectives and denied starting the #oldfire

    22hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense: #fowler claimed he knew who did it... Claimed he was a big crime boss; delusional

    22hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense: Aunts conversations with #fowler about stolen guns never #oldfire

    22hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense: Ricky Lee Fowler is a unique person, does things make him center of attention

    22hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense: Stater Bros reward tainted investigation

    22hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense: hundreds of leads that lead nowhere

    22hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    He started the fire to burn house that was robbed is theory

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense: heavy burden of proof needed to prosecute, state didn't prove case

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    #fowler defense has jurors falling asleep during closing arguments #oldfire trial

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Jury seems to not be listening to defense even dozing off

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense: booking photo wits used to ID #fowler doesn't portray a likeness at all

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense: it was not van #fowler was accused of driving when #oldfire was started

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense: wanted to call investigators, but couldn't find them.

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense: getting to 1st deg murder for starting a fire in California had #fowler done it is a stretch

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense: show the innocence of the defendant #fowler

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense: there is no evidence connecting #fowler #oldfire and van

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense: believe evidence tunnel vision of blocks

  11. #10
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    Tweets from prosecution closing, from bottom up:

    http://twitter.com/iecourtsnow

    Lori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Jury has begun deliberations in the #fowler #oldfire trial


    21hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    DA: find #fowler guilty


    21hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    DA: #fowler is guilty, this is an act of terrorism, evidence paints clear picture of his guilt


    21hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    DA: #fowler case was a thorough evaluation of the evidence


    21hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    DA: told jury to weigh evidence not to speculate


    21hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    DA: it's a game to #fowler


    21hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    DA: #fowler is evil, that's why he started the fire

  12. #11
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    UPDATE: Old Fire suspect's fate in hands of jury

    http://www.dailybulletin.com/ci_2126...lybulletin.com

    The jury hearing the trial of suspected Old Fire arsonist Ricky Lee Fowler began deliberations Wednesday after the prosecution and defense gave their closing arguments.

    Deputy District Attorney Robert Bulloch told jurors in San Bernardino Superior Court the key evidence was a confession by Fowler. There is no physical evidence, nor DNA evidence, to link the defendant to the 2003 deadly wildfire, he said............

    Defense attorney Donald Jordan told jurors that finding a first-degree murder conviction in California for starting a fire was a stretch..........

  13. #12
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    Guilty!

    Wildfire arsonist guilty of 5 heart attack deaths

    http://www.centurylink.net/news/read...&cps=0&lang=en

    SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. (AP) A jury on Wednesday found a California man guilty of murdering five people who had heart attacks after he deliberately started a blaze that ballooned into a massive wildfire.

    Jurors in San Bernardino found 30-year-old Rickie Fowler guilty of setting the Old Fire in the foothills above San Bernardino in October 2003 that burned 91,000 acres and torched 1,000 buildings over nine days.

    Prosecutors charged Fowler with the murders of five men, ranging in age from 54 to 93, who died from heart attacks after their homes burned to the ground or as they rushed to evacuate. Fowler also was convicted of two counts of arson, along with special circumstances that make him eligible for the death penalty.

    That phase of the proceedings is scheduled to begin Monday.

    More at link.....

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    Penalty phase

    Lori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    the #oldfire trial will resume wednesday, when defense attorney michael belter is expected to call his witnesses for the penalty phase

    1h Lori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    short day for the #oldfire trial - prosecution rested their side after 2 witnesses. look for full story later today at http://www.sbsun.com

    22 Aug Neil Nisperos‏@RanchoNow

    Ex-girlfriend testifies that #OldFire #arson ist raped her, threatened her daughter - http://DailyBulletin.com http://www.dailybulletin.com/ci_2136...rce=rss_viewed

    22 Aug SBCityNow‏@SBcityNOW

    . @IEcourtsNow tweeting from today's hearing on whether to give death penalty to man convicted of setting #OldFire

    22 Aug SBCityNow‏@SBcityNOW

    ICYMI: Ex-girlfriend of #OldFire arsonist testified yesterday that he raped her and threatened to rape her daughter. http://www.sbsun.com/ci_21365195/old...-other-inmates

    21 Aug John Asbury‏@johnasbury

    #OldFire killer complains inmates are teasing him. Thanks to @IEcourtsNow for reporting: http://blog.pe.com/crime-blotter/201...e-teasing-him/

    21 Aug California Lawyer‏@Cal_Lawyer

    P-E: 'Justice screams out' for death, prosecutor says #OldFire #deathpenalty http://www.pe.com/local-news/san-ber...cutor-says.ece

    21 Aug SB District Attorney‏@sbcountyda

    #InCourt Day 2 of the penalty phase continues today in the #Fowler #OldFire trial at 0930 in Dept. 19 San Bernardino Superior Court

    20 Aug John Asbury‏@johnasbury

    Aylward knew Fowler before the fire. Fowler wanted to burn Alyward's house when he started the #Oldfire.

    20 Aug Lori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    The DA just called John Aylward to the stand. Asked about the impact of the #OldFire & the crimes involving him

    20 Aug John Asbury‏@johnasbury

    "I had no clothes, not even a toothbrush," Taylor said. "We didn't have food at times because it was rough." #Oldfire


    17 Aug Mike Brossart‏@MikeBrossart

    Editorial: Justice and some solace for victims of 2003 #OldFire. http://bit.ly/TJXPwr

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    Witnesses talk about convicted Old Fire arsonist's history in prison

    SAN BERNARDINO - A former cellmate of convicted Old Fire arsonist Rickie Lee Fowler testified Wednesday about being repeatedly raped by Fowler. ........

    When Bulloch asked him how he got the attacks to stop, the cellmate said that by luck he talked to a psych employee at the jail, which got him out of his cell and allowed him to report the abuse. ..........

    Earlier this year, Fowler was convicted of three felony counts of sodomy by force at West Valley Detention Center..........

    On several occasions Fowler was seen fighting other inmates - some who did not appear to be defending themselves - striking some in the face, head and upper torso area, and spitting and taunting others.

    The witnesses also said Fowler would ignore their orders. One correctional officer talked about having to pepper spray Fowler to get him to stop attacking an inmate.

    Officer Joe Castillon said Fowler was a problem.

    "He used to always disturb the daily activities of the prison" in Lancaster, Castillon said.


    Read more: http://www.sbsun.com/ci_21378447/wit...#ixzz24Q0PbIk0

  17. #15
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    SBCityNow‏@SBcityNOW

    Columnist @MichelNolan remembers the Old Fire. Jury could give man convicted of setting it death sentence next week

    http://www.sbsun.com/breakingnews/ci...rings-back-bad

  18. #16
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    Defense offers jury glimpse into Old Fire arsonist's troubled past

    http://www.dailybulletin.com/ci_2143...lybulletin.com

    SAN BERNARDINO -- Defense attorneys for convicted Old Fire arsonist Rickie Lee Fowler on Wednesday began their defense of his life, arguing that his tumultuous upbringing of poverty and drug use should be taken into account as a jury decides whether he should get life in prison or death for his crimes...........

    Belter also spoke to jurors about Fowler's life.

    "The Fowler family was a family that lived in abject poverty," he said. "They had no electricity, no running water, no food at times."

    There were five children in the family -- four boys and one girl -- and Belter said they were completely abandoned by the adults.

    "They were subjected to violence that would make the hairs on the back on your neck stand up," Belter said.

    At 8 years old, Fowler's father gave him lines of methamphetamine to snort.

    "Imagine (a third-grader) snorting meth, and that's the start of his life," Belter said.

    And the Fowler children had to steal food from neighbors because because "mom and dad were stoned out on meth," he added.


    More at link.....

  19. #17
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    Twitter posts from 8/30/12/defense witness

    http://twitter.com/iecourtsnow
    (from bottom up)

    Lori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    It's a very powerful drug, smith said. It's very difficult to resist the temptation to use it, smith said. #OldFire

    30 AugLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Is it hard to kick an addiction to meth? Defense attorney Michael Belter asked the witness. #OldFire

    30 AugLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Meth is dangerous for an adolescent is dangerous bcz it distorts reality during a crucial time of development, smith said. #OldFire

    30 AugLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    "they already live in a fantasy world, which is fine," smith said. #OldFire

    30 AugLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Smith said adolescents are much more suspectible to toxic effects of drugs. "they don't have a firm grasp on reality as it is...

    30 AugLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Prolonged meth addiction causes more & more toxic effex due to sleep deprivation, nutritional deficiencies &/or loss of contact w/ reality

    30 AugLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Overstimulation lasts 4 to 6 hours, overloads the brain's capacity to handle 411 & stops production of natural adrenaline. #OldFire

    30 AugLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    & paranoia - hearing noises, seeing things, smith said. #OldFire

    30 AugLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Having a hard time thinking straight, thoughts going too fast to make sense...

    30 AugLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Muscles twitching, jaw clenching, involuntary movements...

    30 AugLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Having more energy to constant pacing...

    30 AugLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    The effects of overstimulation include: going from being more alert to not being able to stop @ all...

    30 AugLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Meth causes over stimulation 3 ways: it releases adrenaline, stimulates receptors & blocks re-uptake. #OldFire

    Lori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Inside the #OldFire trial where defense has called a drug specialist to the witness stand to talk about the effect of meth on the brain

    Lori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Smith was not asked to interview #Fowler, but he spoke generally about meth use & abuse & how it effected his patients. #OldFire

    30 AugLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    His specialties are general psychiatry, addiction psychiatry & forensic psychiatry. #OldFire

    30 AugLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Clark [Smith] has been a medical director for 23 yrs @ a San Diego drug & alcohol treatment center. #OldFire

  20. #18
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    Penalty phase/defense

    http://twitter.com/iecourtsnow

    3hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Sept5 Attorneys in the #oldfire trial are taking today to prep for their closing statements. The trial will continue Thurs

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    No, Patrick said.

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    You suffered from addiction, u didn't get caught for killing ppl. U didn't set a wildfire or rob an adult bookstore did you? Bulloch asked.

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    To an extent, yes, Patrick replied.

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    We can hear all day about how bad conditions were growing up, but it comes down to ppl making choices, doesn't it? Bulloch asked Patrick

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    "& that's questionable," he added. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    "we were in their home. We woke up & went to sleep, they occasionally fed us & clothed us. But that's it," Patrick said about his parents.

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Patrick said values & morals were never instilled in rickie #Fowler & his younger siblings after their parents started taking drugs

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Said he took showers with the neighbor's hose, that they used candles for light & there was no food in the house. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Patrick described the #Fowler household as being in "rancid conditions" quite a bit of the time. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Patrick, who currently lives in Tulsa, OK, said he has never served time in state prison, but he has served time in county jail. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Now Patrick #fowler, rickie's oldest brother, is on the stand. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    ...curse @ his teachers & get into a fight with other kids in school. & that all happened b4 the #Fowler family had their drug problem.

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    That's an understatement, bulloch said. He talked about how in kindergarten #Fowler would steal lunch $ from his classmates...

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    He's my son & I love him, Terrill said. He's had a few problems, yes. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    The truth of the matter is rickie has been a problem from the very beginning, hasn't he? Bulloch asked Terrill.

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Did rickie help find you a new place to live. Bulloch asked Terrill? No, she said. Did rickie help you find food then. No, terrill said.

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    When the family was living in low-income housing in colton, #Fowler's behavior got them kicked out, rendering them homeless. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    But bulloch brought up several negative traits about the #OldFire arsonist.

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Terrill added that she thought rickie lee #Fowler was a soldier - he would stand up for himself. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    That he tries to comfort his family from jail. "I think his mind is real strong," Terrill said. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    During cross examination, Terrill told bulloch that she was proud of her son for being a strong person. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Terrill testified that she was not able to take care of her children @ that time. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    "we were so into drugs, that came first," Terrill testified. She added that she was a drug addict @ the time & she used meth all day long

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    When the couple moved to a house on magnolia in San bernardino, they started doing drugs. Terrill said it was horrible living in that house

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    But Rick fowler sr. wouldn't abuse rickie, she said. "they were real close." #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    She said living with her husband "Tex" for 25 years was hard - he did a lot of mental abuse. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Currently on the stand is kathy Terrill, #Fowler's mother. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    "rickie was my should to cry on. I looked to him more as my father figure," Amy #Fowler testified. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    And there were holes in the walls & broken windows in the house bcz of the violence. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Amy #fowler testified that she had to wear her brother's clothes when she was younger bcz they didn't have $ to buy clothes...

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Amy #Fowler testified that rickie would say, "we gotta be strong & we'll make it through this some day." #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Amy #Fowler said rickie would tell her that she had to be strong. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    "it was a very abusive household." #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    "out of all my 4 brothers, he was the only 1 that never physically or verbally abused me," Amy #Fowler said about rickie. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    She said rickie #Fowler was in & out of jail when they were livng in SB, but she remembers bit & pieces of when he was around

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Amy #Fowler, who is now 22, moved to Utah with her mother when she was 14 yo. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    She has no ear drum in her rig ear & only 10 to 15 percent hearing in her left ear.

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Due to her family smoking drugs around her so much as a child, Amy #Fowler has limited hearing, she testified. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    The next witness is Amy #Fowler, rickie's younger sister. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    & some ppl don't realize that @ all, guillen said regarding turning his life around. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    every life is different, guillen said. for other ppl it takes more in life to realize that...

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    How come you didn't end up murdering ppl? How did you end up the way you did instead of being on trial for murder? Bulloch asked. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Guillen said he moved to Utah & eventually cleaned up his life. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Prosecutor Robert Bulloch questioned guillen about his drug addiction & involvement in a tagging crew, which #Fowler was a part of as well

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    "...if you give them drugs, that's what they're going to grow up to be, y'know?," guillen said. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    "(now, as a parent) I can't believe they would raise their kids that way. It's sad. They're little kids, you can't raise kids like that..."

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    "(at the time) I thought it was a cool place. All you could do is go over there & hang out. Do drugs & party," guillen said. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Def attny michael belter asked guillen to describe the parental supervision @ the #Fowler house.

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Guillen said he saw a young rickie #Fowler, & Fowler's parents, doing drugs in that house. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Guillen described the #Fowler house as a dirty place, a bad place. He would go over there as a preteen & do drugs. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Jesse Guillen said he was 12 or 13 years old when he hung out @ the #Fowler's house. #OldFire

    4 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    The #OldFire trial is back in session after the holiday weekend. The defense is questioning another childhood friend of #Fowler's.

  21. #19
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    Closing arguments/case to jury....

    http://twitter.com/iecourtsnow

    20hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    12 jurors have been released to the jury room for deliberations. 6 alternative jurors are free to go home but must remain on call. #OldFire

    20hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    "I considered your advice & (the advise of both my attorneys) & decided against it," #Fowler said of testifying in the penalty phase

    20hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Smith advised against it, but told #Fowler it was ultimately his decision. Te judge gave the defendant a few minutes to discuss it with atty

    20hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Smith told #fowler it was a but late for considering testifying, since closing arguments have already been given.

    20hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Did you want to testify? Judge Michael smith asked #Fowler. "I am considering it," #Fowler said. #OldFire

    20hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Said he got the cold shoulder from both attnys & was not given the choice to testify or not. #Fowler

    20hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    #Fowler told the judge he was not permitted to testify during the penalty phase, despite bringing it up to both of his lawyers.

    20hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    The jury was released for a break & the judge addressed a note he received from #Fowler

    20hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Belter finished his closing statements with a quote from to kill a mockingbird.

    20hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    & while the jury has already found him guilty of setting the fire, they have to decide what his role was, belter said. #OldFire

    20hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    There is a concession that mr. #Fowler did not act alone, belter said. #OldFire

    20hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Rickie #Fowler's journey here is 2be considered when deciding what the appropriate punishment is, belter said later regarding the defs life

    20hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    quite frankly, there is a lot of evidence against mr #Fowler, belter said. #OldFire

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Vengeance & community outrage are not factors in this trial, belter said. They are not to be considered when making a decision. #OldFire

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    "a decision based on outrage is vengeance," belter told them. #OldFire

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Now Michael belter, #Fowler's defense attorney, is talking to the jurors. #OldFire

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    "the defendant deserves the most severe punishment our society has to offer," bulloch said as he finished his closing statements. #OldFire

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    But that doesn't mean he should be given a pass for what he did, bulloch said. "he should still be held accountable for the greater crimes."

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Bulloch advised the jury to give #fowler's childhood, which included poverty, drug use & abusive conditions, some consideration...

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    "he had such a jacked up childhood, that you should have some sympathy on him," bulloch said sarcastically. #OldFire

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    whether or not related to what the defendant is on trial for. #OldFire

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    The biggest factor this jury will have to face during deliberations is sympathy for the defendant's character...

    23hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    "your job is to consider justice," bulloch told the jury panel, made up of 11 women & 7 men.

    6 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    #Fowler is facing two options in the penalty phase of the trial - the death sentence or life in prison. #OldFire

    6 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Despite hearing everything about #Fowler's life & upbringing, bulloch said the defendant doesn't deserve a break or a lesser sentence

    6 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    This is the time to decide the appropriate punishment for rickie #Fowler, supervising deputy district attorney robert bulloch told the jury

    6 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    The judge just finished giving jury instructions. After a short break, closing arguments will begin. #OldFire

    6 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    The #Oldfire trial is back in session today. Attnys will give their closing statements then the case will be given 2 jurors 4 deliberations

  22. #20
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    Still deliberating on penalty phase

    http://twitter.com/iecourtsnow

    Lori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    The jury recessed for the day about 1 p.m. and will cont. deliberating on Mon. The 2nd q will be revisited then, acc to ct records #oldfire

    Lori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    in that time, the court received 2 questions from the jury panel. #oldfire

    1hLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    #oldfire jurors had another short day today - deliberating for about 2 hours, according to court records.

  23. #21
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    http://twitter.com/iecourtsnow

    17h Lori Fowler ‏@IEcourtsNow
    the jury panel is deciding whether #oldfire arsonist Rickie Lee #Fowler will get life in prison or the death penalty.

    17h Lori Fowler ‏@IEcourtsNow
    jurors started deliberating on 9/6. According to court records, they have met for 5 days and deliberated for about 11 hours total. #oldfire

    17h Lori Fowler ‏@IEcourtsNow
    After about 3 hours of deliberating, jurors in the #oldfire trial have recessed for the day. Deliberations are set to continue tomorrow.

  24. #22
    Join Date
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    http://twitter.com/iecourtsnow

    Lori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    the jurors have been deliberating for 8 court days - the term "tough decision" is an understatement

    20 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    jurors in the #oldfire trial are deciding whether convicted arsonist rickie #fowler will get the death penalty or life w/o parole


    20 SepLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    No verdict in the #oldfire trial today - jurors went home about 2 pm. Not scheduled to come back to court until TUESDAY!

  25. #23
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    No verdict yet......

    http://twitter.com/iecourtsnow


    Lori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    the #oldfire jurors are not meeting today, but they are scheduled to resume deliberations tomorrow [Fri]. we'll see what comes of that...

    21h

  26. #24
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    Jury: Death for arsonist convicted of 5 murders

    http://www.centurylink.net/news/read...lang=en&page=1

    ............Superior Court Judge Michael A. Smith ordered Fowler to return to court Nov. 16 for sentencing. The judge can either accept the jury's recommendation or sentence Fowler to life in prison without possibility of parole..............

    Jurors declined to speak with reporters outside the courtroom.

    Defense attorney Michael Belter said he spoke with members of the jury after the hearing and was told they had gone back and forth on whether to recommend death or a life sentence.

    "We still take the position that if one is not involved with the intentional killing of somebody, the death penalty would not be warranted," Belter said, adding that he plans to file a motion for a new trial.


    More at link.....

  27. The Following User Says Thank You to Reader For This Useful Post:

    PHB

  28. #25
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    http://twitter.com/iecourtsnow

    Lori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    16 Nov A hearing was set for 12/14 where it could be decided that a new attorney will be appointed.

    16 NovLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Another lawyer was appointed to review #fowler's letter & see if it's necessary to take the next step & relieve current council

    16 NovLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    A jury chose the death penalty for #fowler earlier this year after a lengthy trial.

    16 NovLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    #fowler apparently complained that certain things that should have been done in his case weren't done.

    16 NovLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    #fowler has written a letter to the judge, asking for additional or new council for a new trial.

    16 NovLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Defense attorney don Jordan is planning to file a motion for a new trial.

    16 NovLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    But lawyers in the case are saying the hearing will be continued...possibly into the new year.

    16 NovLori Fowler‏@IEcourtsNow

    Old fire arsonist rickie lee fowler is scheduled to be sentenced today in San Bernardino superior court

    "The further we (as the human race) grow away from the natural world, the quieter the natural world becomes and the more pathological we become as a culture."........Bernie Krause

    Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.........Martin Luther King Jr.

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