Prosecutors present recorded messages in Hall sentencing retrial



Bio | Email | Follow: @JessicaV_KVUE

Posted on July 1, 2010 at 11:50 AM

Updated Thursday, Jul 1 at 9:21 PM

The sentencing retrial of Laura Hall is now in its third day of testimony.

Prosecutors are playing recorded phone conversations Hall made while in jail: 19 phone calls in all from 2008 to 2010.
Prosecutors are asking jurors to sentence Hall to the maximum 10 years in prison for her involvement in the 2005 murder of Jennifer Cave.  A jury convicted Hall of hindering apprehension and tampering with evidence in Cave’s murder.
In one call from February of 2008 while Hall was in jail, she is heard saying, "What I'm saying is that I'm not gonna be in here in two months. They're gonna come and try to take me away, and I'm gonna snap someone's neck before then."
Her lawyer calls the words frustrations and questioned their importance in the sentencing.
“My client was unhappy at being in jail -- complained and raised hell, as anyone would. I don't know what that does to answer the question 'What was her involvement? What did she do?'” said defense attorney Joe James Sawyer.
Hall maintains her innocence in the mutilation of Cave's body. Hall agreed to special interview segments with the CBS program 48 Hours. Prosecutors presented clips of the specials to the jury Thursday morning, including a clip where Hall said: "People blame me for everything, but it was really Colton."
Colton Pitonyak is serving 55 years for shooting and killing Cave at his West Campus apartment in August 2005.
Hall's attorney is seeking probation for his client. He is expected to take over the proceedings Thursday afternoon.
“I think there are two kinds of evidence being offered: a body of evidence suggesting her involvement and a body of evidence suggesting that she's not a very nice person. So, if the jury is led by emotion, maybe I lose. If they're lead by reason, they'll be asking, 'What proves this woman's involvement and why do we punish her severely?'” said Sawyer.
Sawyer says there is a chance Hall will take the stand herself.