Defense suggests Geneva death was accident, not murder

  • Shadwick King

    Shadwick King

Updated 3/5/2015 8:06 PM

Maybe a drunk, dehydrated and exhausted Kathleen King went for an early-morning run July 6, 2014, along the railroad tracks in Geneva. Perhaps she felt woozy and passed out, or slipped on large gravel, landing with her head hanging over a rail.

A defense attorney for Shadwick King, who is accused of killing his wife last July, pressed these points Thursday -- the fourth day of King's trial -- with the forensic pathologist who conducted Kathleen's autopsy.


Dr. Mitra Kalelkar was questioned about marks on Kathleen King's face, jaw, left arm, left foot and shins, as well as hemorrhage marks in her eyes, at the base of her tongue and in her epiglottis.

Special Public Defender Dan Konicek asked whether Kathleen King could have gotten the eye hemorrhages from vomiting, and the foot bruise from sustaining an injury while wearing flip-flop shoes, perhaps by falling off a bar stool.

Kathleen was wearing shorts, a T-shirt, socks and running shoes when she was found in the early morning of July 6 on the Union Pacific railroad tracks.

Kalelkar also testified she found it unusual Kathleen King would have gone running with a twisted bra band and bra strap, or with an ankle sock twisted so that the heel was on the ankle. Also, the bra was pulled up over more than half of her breasts.

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However, while questioning a Geneva police officer, King's public defender Kelli Childress asked if the officer had ever seen a woman so drunk she would try to put on her shoes without unlacing them, thereby twisting the sock, or would don a bra that had been previously twisted the last time it was taken off. He answered no.

Kalelkar was asked whether three narrow parallel bruises on one of Kathleen King's arms could have come from someone helping her get off a bar stool, or from someone grabbing her to keep her from tripping up a stairway.

Kalelkar said the bruises could have come from someone gripping Kathleen King's arm.

Two male patrons, including a neighbor of the Kings, and a bartender from the Dam Bar in Geneva testified the couple came in around 11:30 p.m. July 5.

Both men testified the couple seemed fine, that Kathleen was friendly, and she was intoxicated.

The bartender testified she served five bottles of beer to Shadwick King and four glasses of wine to Kathleen before the bar closed at 2 a.m. Kathleen King's blood alcohol content was 0.15, according to the autopsy.

Prosecutors contend Shadwick King murdered his wife out of jealousy when he discovered she was having an emotional affair with a man she met while at military reserve training. Kathleen King and the man had exchanged more than 3,500 text messages in the previous two weeks, including one from Kathleen asking the man to marry her. In her opening statement, Childress said there was no argument between the Kings and that there was no evidence Shadwick King had hurt her.

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