But in 2011, Maryland’s highest court threw out the conviction, saying that crucial information had been wrongly withheld from jurors. Smith’s retrial began Aug. 30.
Trial Day 10
Sept. 13, 2012
With the jury waiting around outside the courtroom, Assistant State’s Attorney Robert Hill and defense counsel Andrew Jezic sparred over which questions Jezic could ask detective Sean Reilly, who was set to testify later in the morning. In the last trial, the judge sustained a series of objections, and Hill said he thought they could hash that out before the jury entered.
Jezic made clear that one key question he and co-counsel Barry Helfand wanted asked was whether Gary Smith walked from his car down to a lake to ditch the gun used in Michael McQueen’s murder. Smith had told detectives he threw it from a bridge.
Judge Eric M. Johnson pushed Jezic on the relevance, and finally Jezic said: “The issue is, Gary Smith did not wash anything.”
There was more back and forth between the judge and lawyers until Jezic declared: “This is our witness,” and began to explain how the defense is entitled to make its case.
Johnson told Jezic they were not on the record, so there was no need to explain the law.
“I’m sorry I’m expressing frustration,” Jezic told the judge, adding that the prosecution spent many days laying out the facts of their case, and the defense needed to be able to do the same thing.
“It’s a central contention of our case that he did not wash his hands or wash any part of his body,” Jezic said.
Finally Johnson, in talking about the lake question and others, said of Jezic, “Let him ask all these questions he wants to…I don’t see any relevance at all.”
“I apologize for expressing frustration,” Jezic repeated.
“You’ve got 12 frustrated people sitting there,” Johnson said, referring to the still-empty jury box.
Jezic called Reilly, the lead detective in the case, and prosecutors made a quick objection.
“I will sustain every objection to every leading question,” Johnson said.
Reilly was asked to look at the text messages on McQueen’s red cell phone in the days before McQueen’s September 26, 2006 death.
Reilly said there were 75 sent messages. The last one was on September 10, at 3:08 p.m.
During the August 5 to September 4 billing period, there were 91 sent messages, Reilly said.
Jezic said he was not asking about the content of the messages, just the dates of messages going backward in time.
“The one before that?” Jezic kept asking Reilly, who responded: “September 5. . .September 2. . .September 1. . .”