Jeffery Trevino does not testify in own defense - New York News

Defense rests, Jeffery Trevino doesn't testify

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMSP) -

It was a short day in court for Kira Steger's family, but a day filled with courtroom drama as Jeffery Trevino declined to take the stand in his own defense.

Trevino is charged with second-degree murder for allegedly killing his 30-year-old wife and dumping her naked body into the Mississippi River.

"It's a hard legal concept for many people to accept logically, because most people would say it I didn't do it," said Hamline University law Prof. Joseph Daly. "I would want to get up there and say something."

Daly has been on both sides of a trial. As a retired prosecutor and defense attorney, Daly agrees with Trevino's decision -- especially in a circumstantial case like this one, where his defense team has tried to create reasonable doubt at every turn to win an acquittal.

"The burden is entirely on the prosecution," Daly said. "We put no burden on the defendant."

Jeffery Trevino's defense attorney, John Conard, also surprised the courtroom when he announced he wasn't going to call a single witness. Conard told FOX 9 "it seems like the government proved my case quite handily."

He has argued that the evidence doesn't add up -- that there's no eyewitness and nothing directly links Trevino to the murder beyond the urban legend that the husband always does it.

"(The prosecution) must connect all the dots," Conard said. "The burden is on the prosecution to connect all the circumstantial dots to (Trevino)."

One issue jurors will have to weigh as they begin deliberations -- a small $20 bag of marijuana found in Kira Steger's abandoned car at the Mall of America. The defense has suggested that her presumed drug buying would have put her at risk, and may have led to her brutal death.

It came out in court on Monday that police investigators were able to track down the source of the marijuana to a friend of Kira's in her St. Paul neighborhood. But the judge barred jurors from hearing the evidence, arguing it should have come up earlier in the trial and it would force the supplier to incriminate themselves on the witness stand.

Closing arguments will begin at 9 a.m. Tuesday.

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