September 27, 1996 |
Moments before a judge sentenced him to death Thursday for the murder of 12-year-old Polly Klaas, Richard Allen Davis stunned a crowded courtroom by accusing the dead girl's father of molesting her. As one of Marc Klaas' friends shouted "Burn in hell, Davis!" an enraged Klaas lunged toward the killer before sheriff's deputies intercepted him and pushed him from the courtroom. Spectators gasped and there was a long, drawn-out "Ohhhh!" The episode began when Davis was telling Judge Thomas C.
May 11, 1994 |
Two schoolmates of Polly Klaas described in frightening detail Tuesday how a bearded stranger with a knife abducted their friend from her Petaluma bedroom, turning a giggly sleep-over into a nightmare that ended two months later when Polly's body was found.
May 30, 1996 |
The whirlwind defense of the man accused of killing Polly Klaas ended Wednesday as his attorneys rested their case one day after they began it. "When you leave today, you will have heard all of the evidence you're going to hear in this trial," Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Thomas Hastings told jurors before releasing them. Defense attorneys conceded at the outset of the trial that defendant Richard Allen Davis killed Polly, 12, but they denied that the crime was sexually motivated.
July 4, 1994 |
In a case that began with terrifying similarities to the Polly Klaas kidnap-murder, a young girl was abducted from her home at knifepoint in the Central Valley city of Lodi on Saturday--but was found alive Sunday in a field in the Sierra foothills. Twelve-year-old Kathleen (Katie) Romanek stood up in the field and walked to her rescuers shortly after they arrested her suspected kidnaper, identified as Steve Reece Cochran, a 25-year-old transient.
November 21, 1995 |
The trial of Polly Klaas' accused killer will be moved to San Jose, a Sonoma County judge ruled Monday over defense objections that keeping the trial in the San Francisco Bay Area will make it difficult to find an impartial jury. Superior Court Judge Lawrence Antolini chose Santa Clara County, the first choice of prosecutors, over Fresno, Los Angeles and San Diego. Antolini granted a change of venue for defendant Richard Allen Davis, 41, on Sept.
April 17, 1996 |
On the opening day of the Polly Klaas murder trial Tuesday, prosecutors played an emotional tape of the 911 call Polly's mother made to police and suggested that Richard Allen Davis stalked the child before kidnapping and strangling her. The burly, graying defendant, whose long criminal history spurred passage of the state's "three strikes" sentencing law, sat blankly beside his public defenders in a black, long-sleeve shirt and gray jeans.