Prosecutor Chris Koch first focused on the cause of death and manner of Kathleen Savio’s death, saying that “everyone has agreed that the cause was drowning.
“The issue becomes, did she drown at the hands of the defendant, and the answer is yes,” Koch said.
Dr. Larry Blum, who performed the 2007 autopsy after Savio’s body was exhumed, concluded she was not under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and didn't have any history of illness that contributed to her death.
That, Koch argued, led Blum to look at her body, especially how her toes were jammed against the edge of the tub.
“You don't leave your common sense outside when you come into this courtroom,” Koch said, noting that Blum found her position could not have been the result of an accidental fall.
Koch has said “common sense” more than a half-dozen times in the first few minutes of his closing, indicating that the state is going to emphasize that jurors use their life experience and understanding to sift through the highly circumstantial case.
10:15 a.m. 'This man killed Kathleen Savio'
Judge Edward Burmila told jurors that closing arguments are not evidence but are to be based on the evidence and should be judged against the evidence.
Assistant State’s Attorney Chris Koch then began closing statement.
“I'm going to kill you, you are not going to make it to the divorce settlement. You're not going to get the pensions, you're not going to get the kids. That is the statement the defendant made to the victim weeks before her death. And you know what, ladies and gentlemen, that threat became reality.”
The first objection from the defense came just 30 seconds into the state's closing, when attorney Steven Greenberg asked that prosecutors not be allowed to display a photo of Kathleen Savio on the screen during their argument.
The judge sustained, and Koch moved on, reminding jurors that they must use their common sense in judging the evidence, and if they do, they will find that “this man killed Kathleen Savio.”
10:10 a.m. Jurors in the courtroom
Nick Pontarelli, Kathleen Savio's neighbor who testified that she was like a second mother to him, just took a seat in the media overflow room to hear the closing arguments.
Jurors have just entered the courtroom.
10 a.m. Brodsky asks judge to warn gallery