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Chuckie Fleming Murder Trial Day Three Thursday Feb 21st

 

 

 


 


 

Chuckie Fleming Trial – Day Three

 

Thursday. February 21, 2019

 

By Terry Bailey

 


 

The Chuckie Fleming murder trial entered its third day on Thursday, February 21st. Prosecutor Mark Noah called eleven witnesses throughout a day that lasted from 9:30 am until 4:30 pm with a one hour ten minute lunch break. The standard process was followed as Noah called his witnesses and asked questions of them. Defense attorney Julie Effenbeck would then cross examine the witness. Noah and Effenbeck would have another chance to ask questions on redirect. After Noah and Effenbeck asked their list of questions the witness was dismissed and the next witness was called.

 

The first witness called was Tony Perez, Mitchell County Sheriff. Perez had with him a sealed evidence bag. Perez explained the standard chain of custody procedure in law enforcement that ensures that evidence presented in a trial has had no opportunity to be corrupted.

 

Holly Watson Latham, forensic specialist with the KBI was called to testify in regard to fingerprint evidence. Latham is a 19 year veteran with the KBI and has had extensive training and experience with fingerprint evidence.

 

Latham was asked by Lincoln County attorney, Jennifer O’Hare, to open the sealed evidence bag brought to the courthouse by Sheriff Perez. After putting on gloves she broke the seal, opened the bag, and retrieved a plastic Sprite bottle. This bottle was collected at the Fleming residence on August 22, 2013. Latham explained the process of collecting fingerprint evidence and said she found one print on the bottle. It belonged to Chuckie Fleming.

 

Effenbeck asked Latham if she tested for fingerprints on the shotgun and the shotgun shells. Latham said she tested the shotgun and two shotgun shells and did not find any prints.

 

Latham reported than from the time of the murder until June 27, 2008 she received 8 fingerprint samples to test in the Fleming case. None of those fingerprints submitted for testing matched the fingerprint of Chuckie Fleming.

 

Mark Kendrick, a 31 year veteran of the KBI, was present to testify in regard to blood stain evidence. O’Hare presented him with a drawing which he verified to be a copy of the drawing he completed at the crime scene. Kendrick said the drawing indicated the location of blood found on the Fleming bed. Near Fleming’s body, which was still there when he arrived, was an area with no blood stain. Further away, blood stain existed.

 

Effenbeck asked if the lack of blood stain would indicate a body was in bed when blood was transferred to the bed. Kendrick said, “Maybe, maybe not. There could be other explanations.”

 

Local attorney Curt Frazier testified that he knew Carol Fleming and he helped prepare her will. He also helped Carol establish a testamentary trust. This is a legal document in which the owner specifically determines the disbursement of his/her assists upon their death. Carol established that the proceeds of her estate, upon her death, would go to her sons in equal amounts. They would receive the money in three disbursements, at 30 years of age, 38, and 45 years old. On May 26, 2004 all obligations of Carol’s were settled and the first disbursements were made.

 

Effenbeck asked Frazier if there were obligations for the house and her business. He said there were. She asked if disbursing money on such a schedule as arranged by Carol was normal. Frazier said that was fairly typical and that in most cases the beneficiaries received equal percentages. He also said if there were multiple beneficiaries and one of them died, that person’s percentage was distributed to their children. If there were no children, the money was divided equally between the surviving heirs. Brad Fleming died in January of 2007.

 

Dwight Daniels, former director of the Farmway Credit Union, was the trustee of Carol’s estate. He verified that upon Carol’s death, he settled the estate and put the money in a trust as specified by Carol with the money to be distributed to her four son’s equally. Daniels said there was a provision in the trust for the sons to access funds for emergency medical situations.

 

Harlan, Harvey, Cox said he was retired and had worked at Sunflower Manufacturing for 28 years. His residence is at 623 East 4th Street in Beloit, directly across the street from the Fleming residence. He has lived there since 1988.

 

On the night of August 15, 2003, he had just finished building his patio and he and his friend, Larry Lampert, had been sitting on the patio, listening to music and talking. Shortly before three o’clock Lampert decided to leave. He noticed he had a headlight out and Cox offered to take him home so he wouldn’t get a ticket. They noticed Chuckie was in the Fleming’s driveway with his new Harley Davidson Ford pickup. At about 2:50 am they walked up the driveway, looked at the pickup and then Cox took Lampert home.

 

On his way home Cox stopped at the stop sign at 8th and Bell. He observed Chuckie with his pickup at the pay phone that was on the outside wall of Pump Mart at that time. Cox figured that must have about 3:00 am.

 

Shortly after arriving back home the area was filled with red lights and police cars. He sent his son Aaron over to find out what was going on. He returned and said “Carol’s dead.”

 

Effenbeck reviewed the sequence of events in Cox’s testimony. She verified that he had seen Chuckie talking on the pay phone at the Pump Mart at 3:00 am and that shortly after he returned home the area was filled with police cars.

 

Aaron Cox, is the 43 year old son of Harvey Cox. He resides with his parents at 623 East 4th in Beloit. He said, “I grew up with the Fleming kids.” On August 15th he was employed at the Pizza Hut. He worked until about midnight, came home and walked to the Captain’s Quarters. He was there about an hour and a half then left and walked home. He made a phone call and then lights were on everywhere and the cops were all over the place.

 

Cox said the Fleming residence was known as a party house and was a good place to hang out. He said there was a party there just about every weekend.

 

Cox identified two photographs that he had taken about two weeks before the murder. The photos were taken in Chuckie’s bedroom showing the shotgun and shotgun shells.

 

The trial was recessed from 12 noon until 1:10 pm.

 

Effenbeck review the details of his current testimony and other testimonies he had given. He confirmed that when he went to the Fleming residence about 2:00 am the doors were locked which was unusual. She posed a question, “Why would you take a picture of a shotgun in Chuckie’s room?” Cox related that at 2:00 am the TV was not on and the house was dark.

 

On redirect Noah asked, “Did you kill Carol Fleming?” Cox replied, “No.”

 

Dan Fleming, Carol’s brother in law, told about Marcia Fleming coming to his house and telling him about Carol’s death. He dressed and went to the residence.

 

Fleming recounted an event that transpired in the spring or early summer of 2003. Fleming was at Captain’s Quarters when Chuckie tapped in on the shoulder and asked to talk to him. Chuckie asked, “How can I get hold of Dad’s money?” He related he believed that his mother was loose with money, going on cruises and buying jewelry. He believed if things did not change there wouldn’t be any money left for him to inherit.

 

Dan Fleming said he told Chuckie that it was Carol’s money, not his and that he would get his inheritance in due time.

 

Effenbeck quizzed Dan Fleming about the closeness of the family. It appears that when Carol’s husband died the family was not as close as before.

 

Steve Fleming, bother in law to Carol, worked for Carol after the death of her husband. He kept the books for her business, wrote checks and paid the bills.. He said he wrote weekly allowance checks to Brad Fleming in the amount of $300-$400 as directed by Carol. He wrote checks for monthly payments for Chuckie’s pickup. He said he never wrote checks to Rick Harris.

 

Chad Fleming, Carol’s second oldest son, was living in the Fleming home at the time of Carol’s murder. He had recently arrived back in Beloit after serving a 90 day sentence in the Norton Correctional Facility. He had just started a program of study at the Technical College.

 

After getting out of school around three o’clock he rode around with some of friends, smoked a little pot, and just hung out. They went to his house where he got his mom’s scooter and drove it to Bob Sibley’s place. They began watching movies and according to Chad Fleming, “we ramped up our marijuana intake while watching movies.” He said he passed out sometime during the second movie.

 

Fleming woke up sometime before 3 am and drove the scooter home and parked it by the garage. He noticed Rick Harris’ pickup in the driveway. While there Chuckie pulled up in his black Ford pickup. He saw Chuckie carrying a shotgun.

 

Chad then went into the house through the sliding glass door to the kitchen. He noticed Chuckie “meandering” and then put the gun in the trash can. Chad said Chuckie then retrieved the gun from the trash can and went out to the attached garage with it. He then noticed the TV in the living room was on full blast and a lump on the couch which he assumed was David Harris. Fleming said the light in his mother’s bedroom was on. He saw his mom on the bed, dead. He saw Rick Harris coming around the bed.

 

At this point Deputy Eric Hilt arrived and came through the door. Fleming said that Hilt tackled him and took him to the floor saying “Stay down, stay cool.” Chad told Hilt that Chuckie has a gun and it was in the back garage. Noah asked him if he killed his mother and he said, “No.”

 

Effenbeck confirmed that Chad had taken two lie detector tests. She asked about the amount of marijuana he had smoked that evening. He said between the three of them perhaps 4-5-6 joints. Effenbeck then reviewed the events and timeline of the evening for clarification

 

On redirect Noah asked Chad if he killed his mother. He said, “No.”

 

The final witness was Denis Isbell. When asked if he knew Carol Fleming he said that she had cut his hair. Noah then asked if he and Carol had been involved in an intimate relationship he said “Yes.” Asked if he thought Carol went out with other men he replied, “I’m sure she did.” He said he knew she was in a relationship with Rick Harris.

 

Noah asked how he found out about Carol’s death. Isbell said Aaron Cox called the house and his wife answered the phone. Cox told Isbell’s wife that Carol was dead.

 

Noah asked Isbell if he killed Carol and he said, “No.”

 

Judge Cudney the recessed the activity at 4:35 pm. The proceedings will continue at 9:00 am February 22nd.

 


 


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