Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Trevor Bauer appeared in court to fight the extension of a protective order sought by a woman who says he sexually assaulted herBy ANDREW DALTON Associated PressJuly 23, 2021, 10:34 PM• 3 min readShare to FacebookShare to TwitterEmail this articleLOS ANGELES — Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Trevor Bauer appeared in court Friday to fight the extension of a protective order sought by a woman who says he choked her to the point where she lost consciousness and punched her during two sexual encounters earlier this year.Attorneys for Bauer and for the woman revealed during a short court session that they intend to call several witnesses, including Bauer, and argue over the order in what amounts to a trial that is expected to last three days.Judge Dianna Gould-Saltman delayed the beginning of that hearing until Aug. 2 because Bauer’s attorney, Shawn Holley, said she was given the woman’s witness list late and had insufficient time to prepare.“We came here ready, but ready on what had been presented to us,” Holley said in court.Gould-Saltman ruled that Bauer will need to take the stand and must decline to answer possibly incriminating questions one at a time as is standard in civil proceedings like this one. She declined Holley’s request to let him avoid testifying altogether. Holley said she was strongly advising Bauer against saying anything.Police in Pasadena, California, are also investigating the allegations for possible criminal charges, so avoiding self-incrimination is essential for his legal team.The judge extended the temporary restraining order keeping Bauer from making any contact with the woman until the full hearing is completed.The pitcher’s agents, Jon Fetterolf and Rachel Luba, have disputed the allegations. Fetterolf said in a statement that the pair’s brief relationship was “wholly consensual.” The statement said Bauer has messages from the woman asking for the kind of “rough” sexual interactions they had.Major League Baseball put Bauer on paid leave on July 2 under the joint domestic violence, sexual assault and child abuse policy adopted by MLB and the players’ union in 2015. The leave has been extended through July 27 and could be extended further.The woman, who is from San Diego, said in court documents seeking the order that she and Bauer met on Instagram when she tagged him in a photo while he pitched during a game against the Padres in May.She later visited his home in Pasadena and had sexual encounters that began as consensual but grew violent without her consent, the documents said.The second incident, in which she alleges Bauer repeatedly punched her, left her with two black eyes, a bloodied swollen lip, significant bruising and scratching to one side of her face. She included photographs showing the injuries.The documents say she sought the order because Bauer was repeatedly calling and texting her after the second encounter to ask if she was OK, and she wanted no more contact with him.Bauer’s agents said he hadn’t made any contact with her in a month when the restraining order was first sought, making the move baseless.The Associated Press does not typically identify people who say they have been victims of sexual assault.Bauer agreed to a $102 million, three-year contract to join his hometown Dodgers earlier this year after winning his first Cy Young with the Cincinnati Reds last season. Bauer is 8-5 with a 2.59 ERA in 17 starts this season.———More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP—Sports
A judge is scheduled to hand down a sentence nearly two years after a jury recommended execution for a man convicted of the home-invasion murders of two women in Southern CaliforniaBy ANDREW DALTON Associated PressJuly 16, 2021, 4:16 AM• 3 min readShare to FacebookShare to TwitterEmail this articleLOS ANGELES — Nearly two years after a jury recommended execution for a man prosecutors called “The Boy Next Door Killer,” a judge is set to hand down a sentence Friday.Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Larry P. Fidler will choose between a death sentence and life in prison without the possibility of parole for Michael Thomas Gargiulo, 45, who was convicted in August 2019 of the home-invasion murders of two women and the attempted murder of a third.His case received added attention because one of his victims was about to go on a date with actor Ashton Kutcher, who testified at the trial.A jury recommended his execution in October 2019, but the pandemic and procedural issues forced several delays in his sentencing.He’s also facing a future trial for a 1997 killing in his Illinois hometown. Prosecutors in his California trial were allowed to present extensive evidence from that case as they sought to establish a pattern and present Gargiulo as a serial killer.Gargiulo is a former air conditioner and heater repairman, bouncer and aspiring actor whose nicknames from media outlets included “The Chiller Killer” and “The Hollywood Ripper” but was called “The Boy Next Door Killer” by prosecutors because he lived near his victims.He was found guilty of the 2001 murder of Ashley Ellerin in her Hollywood home as she prepared to go out with Kutcher. At the trial, Kutcher said that he was late to pick up Ellerin, who did not answer her door. He looked inside to see blood stains that he thought were spilled wine. He testified that he briefly feared he would be a suspect in the case as one of the last to communicate with Ellerin.Prosecutors used him in their closing arguments, suggesting Ellerin was killed by another man who was jealous of Kutcher.Gargiulo was also convicted of killing Maria Bruno in her home in El Monte in 2005, and of the attempted murder in 2008 of Michelle Murphy, who fought him off in her Santa Monica apartment, forcing him to flee and leave a trail of blood that also led to his eventual arrests for the other two killings. Murphy would be a key witness at the trial.Even if he is given a death sentence, Gargiulo is unlikely to be put to death anytime soon. California has not executed anyone since 2006 and Gov. Gavin Newsom has halted executions for as long as he is in office. But courts have been proceeding on the assumption that executions may one day resume.
A judge has ordered that the murder trial of New York real estate heir Robert Durst will continue, despite defense requests for a delay because he’s in too much painBy ANDREW DALTON Associated PressJune 14, 2021, 7:38 PM• 2 min readShare to FacebookShare to TwitterEmail this articleLOS ANGELES — A judge on Monday ordered that the murder trial of New York real estate heir Robert Durst will continue, despite defense requests for a delay because they say he’s in such pain that he can’t stand up to dress for trial.Durst was hospitalized and the trial was put on pause Thursday. On Monday, with the Los Angeles County jail system doctors declaring Durst fit for court, Superior Court Judge Mark E. Windham ordered that testimony in the trial, which resumed last month after a 14-month pandemic delay, would continue.The 78-year-old Durst, charged with killing his best friend Susan Berman, appeared in court looking frail in a wheelchair and jail garb, with a catheter attached that he held up to show the judge.Defense attorneys argued adamantly that the trial should be adjourned again because Durst was in pain, and because he couldn’t get into the street clothes he is allowed to wear to avoid prejudicing the jury. The lawyers said Durst had a urinary tract infection as a consequence of bladder cancer, and had undiagnosed health problems that they couldn’t name because the jail hospital had denied them information and access to him.“I understand he’s in a good amount of pain because of the catheter,” Windham said.Durst’s lawyer Dick DeGuerin answered adamantly, “It’s not just the catheter your honor, he’s in chest pain, he’s unable to breathe completely.”As testimony resumed, the judge had a blanket put over Durst to cover up his jail clothes and to “maintain his dignity to some degree,” adding that “one doesn’t ordinarily meet with the public with a catheter bag in full view.”Durst is on trial for the 2000 killing of Berman at her Los Angeles home. Prosecutors have also been allowed to present evidence that Durst killed his wife, who disappeared in 1982, and that he deliberately killed a Texas man in 2000. Durst has denied killing Berman or having any involvement in his wife’s disappearance. He was acquitted in the killing in Texas, which his lawyers argued was an accident.Deputy District Attorney John Lewin argued Monday that Durst, who fled authorities after two of the deaths, had used countless ploys to avoid facing trial. The prosecutor argued that if anything Durst’s appearance hurt the prosecution.”This doesn’t look like someone who’s murdered three people,” Lewin said.