Well, I’ve certainly seen the hoopla. You can’t miss it, the barriers outside the entrance to 26th St., the reporters with different badges and languages and levels of dress, the gawkers, the stalkers. It’s certainly a circus. The most number of cameras I’ve ever seen in the lobby prior to this was about 5 during the Brown’s Chicken and Pasta murder re-do. This is a whole new level.
So what the hell is going on? It’s a classic SODDI defense (Some Other Dude Did It). Or CGI defense, depending on how you look at it. As you probably know by now, the defense has pictures of Mr. Kelly’s body that they say proves conclusively that it can’t be him in the video. Or that his head was superimposed on someone’s body to make it look like him.
Now, I don’t know about you, but I believe the provenance of this video tape puts it back to at least the late 90’s. To put his head on someone else’s body would take LucasArts, Industrial Light and Magic levels of sophistication to pull off at that point, and I don’t think anyone, judge, jury or spectator is buying that. But whatever, reasonable doubt takes only one idiot on the jury to start stroking their chin and saying, “You know, I didn’t think you could bring dinosaurs to life so realistically, but look at ‘Jurassic Park’!”
As for Mr. Kelly’s defense team…well, he certainly brought in the ringers. I see Sam Adams Jr. a lot around the courthouses. He carries himself well, and from the coverage by the Trib, he’s stood out during the trial as a fierce cross-examiner. Good for him! From what I understand, he and his father were brought in at the last minute, and I have to wonder if it was just for their trial skills, or putting another black face at the defense table with Mr. Kelly.
The first time I was ever in a courtroom in Chicago, I stood in front of Judge Gaughan. He is a stern taskmaster, to say the least. As the reports have indicated he has kept EVERYONE on a short leash in his courtroom. The first time I was there, I watched him dress down a third chair prosecutor (my age at the very least), for not knowing which police district the discovery we were waiting on came from. He is…ornery.
The prosecution has been doing what they do best…piling on the evidence. Lots and lots of witnesses who say, over and over, that sure enough, that’s Mr. Kelly. And everyone in the neighborhood knew it too! Well, that’s just not that solid. And when the victim herself doesn’t testify, I think this case is pretty much sewn up.
I am going to put the good money on an acquittal. Mr. Kelly probably won’t testify, but who knows. I bet it’s a last minute decision. He’s a hilarious actor and I can just see him having enough hubris to think he can convince the jury he’s innocent. If he did so from the witness stand in a sing-song manner while a gospel choir stood up in the gallery, well, then, I don’t see how he’d lose. Star power, no victim, no other ID than this videotape, no other physical evidence. Just not enough for the prosecution. And from the reports of the video’s contents, not even a good ID of Mr. Kelly. I think he walks.
…on the other hand. It’s a minor, there are degrading sex acts…and that’s powerful stuff. This is going to be interesting!