November 1, 1991 |
The search that began Thursday for six people to hear rape charges against William Kennedy Smith often sounded like a review of Kennedy family triumph and tragedy as prospective jurors were invited to reminisce about one of the most famous names in American history. Prosecutor Moira K. Lasch told the first of 400 potential jurors: "The verdict is not to be influenced in any way by the defendant's relation to the Kennedy family."
October 3, 1991 |
A judge Wednesday moved up the starting date for William Kennedy Smith's rape trial. The trial had been set to start Jan. 13, but Smith's lead attorney, Roy Black, is scheduled to defend a client in another trial that starts just a week earlier. Prosecutor Moira Lasch argued that letting the Jan. 13 date stand could force Smith's trial to be delayed until next summer. Circuit Judge Mary Lupo then ordered that jury selection begin Oct. 30 and scheduled opening statements to begin Dec. 2.
May 30, 1991 |
A prosecutor asked for court authority Wednesday to conduct an AIDS test on the blood of William Kennedy Smith, saying the state was acting at the request of the woman who alleges Smith raped her. The request was filed the day after it was disclosed that an FBI examination matched samples of fluid recovered from the 29-year-old woman with Smith's DNA profile. The probability of finding such a genetic match at random would approximate 1 in 300,000, according to the FBI.
May 5, 1991 |
A state attorney has apparently abandoned his quest for a judicial clarification to determine if news organizations violated Florida law by identifying the woman who said she was raped by a nephew of Sen. Edward M. Kennedy at the family compound. Circuit Judge Richard Burk had given State Atty.
June 20, 1991 |
A West Palm Beach, Fla., judge imposed a modified gag order in the rape case of William Kennedy Smith. Originally, Circuit Judge Mary Lupo had proposed a sweeping gag order covering virtually all trial participants, but the news media protested. As issued, the order covers prosecutors, law enforcement officials, defense attorneys and their investigators and court personnel. It excludes Smith, the alleged victim and Smith's uncle, Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.). Smith has pleaded not guilty.
November 6, 1991 |
A 78-year-old prospective juror and self-described oddball left the decorum of the William Kennedy Smith rape trial a shambles Tuesday with a free-wheeling commentary on life, politics and the foibles of the Kennedy family. "I don't know who was running around without his pants," declared Florence Orbach, a Palm Beach widow, referring to reports that Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.) wandered partly clad on the night of an alleged rape at his family estate. "I think it was the fat guy."
May 6, 1997 |
The suspect in a series of crimes that included rape, kidnapping and one slaying was captured after a 15-mile car chase. James Sears Hartsock, 25, was spotted in the small town of Holly Hill driving a car stolen from a woman who was abducted last week and held captive for four days, police said. The woman was freed late Sunday near downtown Orlando. Hartsock also was wanted in connection with last week's bludgeoning death of a man and the rape of a woman near Universal Studios in Orlando.
August 14, 1998 |
Florida prosecutors dropped charges against a man thought to be a serial rapist targeting international tourists, citing DNA tests that failed to link him to the attacks. Kenneth Taylor, 39, said he might have spent the rest of his life in prison, simply because he looks like "hundreds of black males in the area." He was charged July 16 with raping a British tourist in Kissimmee, Fla.
May 14, 1991 |
Lawyers for William Kennedy Smith disclosed Monday that an eyewitness disputes a 29-year-old woman's allegation that Smith raped her at the Kennedy family estate here, and can testify that "nothing untoward" occurred. Existence of the eyewitness, whose name was not revealed, came as the defense lawyers sought to pressure Palm Beach police from making public more than 1,300 pages of investigative files that the attorneys claim are incomplete.