Coleman told police that Skakel had confessed the murder to him. Coleman died of a drug overdose in Rochester, N.Y., in 2001, about four months after he testified at Skakel's probable cause hearing.

Colucci said the New York investigators told Colucci that Coleman had "zero credibility" and were familiar with his long arrest record, a recent severe weight loss he had, and abscesses he had on his arms from shooting up drugs.

"They couldn't believe he was going to be a star witness," Colucci said.

Colucci said he raced to tell Sherman about the investigators. "He said, 'I'll take care of it," Colucci said. Three weeks later, Colucci asked Sherman if he called the investigators and Sherman told him he still planned to.

"I doubt very much if he ever reached them," Colucci said.

In testimony earlier this week Sherman said he found Coleman's testimony "patently unbelievable," and told the judge, "I never thought I needed a smoking gun to shoot down Mr. Coleman's testimony."

Walker Hauer's testimony Friday brought court spectators back to the wealthy Belle Haven neighborhood of Greenwich in the mid-1970s. Skakel and Moxley were neighbors.

On the night Moxley was killed, Walker Hauer said, youths in the neighborhood were planning for "mischief night," when they would tent trees with toilet paper, cover windows with shaving cream, and play ding-dong-ditch. Walker Hauer said her parents would not let her go out and instead she attended a Red Cross meeting.

But Moxley promised to call her friend at 9:30 that night to fill her in on what was happening.

"I felt as if I would be missing out on all of the fun that evening," Walker Hauer said.