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Rodgers Trial Updates (Wednesday 10/16)

Posted at 9:55 AM, Oct 16, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-16 20:32:58-04

UPDATE (4:15 PM) -- Taylor Shomaker, Jimmy Jay Rodgers's former girlfriend, appeared visibly upset when she took the stand Wednesday to testify against Rodgers.

Shomaker is the person who led detectives to the location of a blue jumpsuit and to pieces of a cellphone that allegedly belonged to Rodgers.

Shomaker says there was a time at the end of June of 2015 that Jimmy Rodgers went to Florida, and Curtis Wright picked him up.

When Rodgers came back from Florida and picked her up at her mom's house, Shomaker says Rodgers was wearing a t-shirt he did not have before his trip.

Shomaker also said in court she had exciting news to tell Rodgers when he had returned form Florida — she said she was pregnant.

when they arrived home, Shomaker says there was a black backpack and a white cooler in the kitchen.

In court the state brought out a white cooler from evidence, Shomaker said it was the one that belonged to Rodgers.

When questioned by the state as to what was in the cooler and backpack, Shomaker said she could not recall.

After reviewing copies of her former statement, Shomaker said inside the cooler was a box of gloves and shoes. Inside the backpack was Rodgers blue jumpsuit.

The state brought out the blue jumpsuit Shomaker led detectives to.

Shomaker told the jury she had initiated the conversation where she asked Rodgers if he had killed Teresa, and he said yes.

She said she then asked if he had shot her, and he told her no, that he had used a hammer.

Shomaker said hearing Rodgers tell her he had killed Teresa with a hammer scared her.

Shomaker said Rodgers's nickname was "the hammer."

When photographs were presented in court, Shomaker said they were of Wright's wedding. She said she met Mark Sievers the night before the wedding at Wright's home.

She added that there was a time when Rodgers, Wright, and Sievers stepped away to talk privately.

Shomaker says Rodgers talked to her about making some money from the trip to Florida. She said she couldn't remember if it was before or after the trip. She said Rodgers told her he was hoping to make $10,000.

When asked by the state where Rodgers would be getting the money, Shomaker said she could not recall.

After reviewing a copy of her former statement, Shomaker said Rodgers had told her he would be getting the money from Wright and Wright would be getting it from Mark Sievers. She added Mark Sievers would be getting the money from the life insurance policy.

During cross-examination, the defense asked Shomaker if she remembered when they had spoken to her before and asked if she had ever heard anyone call Rodgers the hammer, and her response was "not that I recall."

Shomaker said she remembered.

When asked by the defense, Shomaker said Wink news was the only media outlet she had spoken with.

Shomaker denied having spoken with Netflix, 20/20, or Dateline.

When the defense continued to question a trip to California, Shomaker said Lisa Hesslove had interviewed her and paid for her flight and hotel, as well as her husband's.

UPDATE (11:45 PM) -- Jury members are now watching the surveillance videos. The state started with the video from inside the Walmart on 6 Mile Cypress, they are now showing video inside the Racetrack gas station.

UPDATE (11:15 AM) -- State witness Matthew DeShazo, digital forensic specialist from the LCSO, is on the stand now.

DeShazo did a forensic examination of the Garmin GPS collected as evidence in the Teresa Sievers murder investigation.

When asked by the state what the email was, DeShazo said it was something along the lines of Jimmy Rodgers Gmail dot com.

DeShazo said they found searches for a Racetrack gas station and a Shell gas station located in Florida. Analysts also found coordinates from the trips that were created to these locations.

DeShazo said there was also a search for a Walmart that is near the Lee County Sheriff's Office location.

DeShazo says he also analyzed video from both of the gas stations and the Walmart.

He says he located subjects that looked like Rogers and Wright and alerted detectives of his findings.

Judge Bruce Kyle allowed the jury members to watch the videos in question but instructed them that it is up to them to decide how much weight they put on this evidence.

Jury members watched the surveillance videos from all three locations.

UPDATE (10:10 AM) -- Jennifer Kircikyan, a digital forensic specialist with the Lee County Sheriff's Office is now on the stand.

Kircikyan says she formatted the data collected from the cellphone into PDFs.

The state said it was Wright's cellphone.

During cross-examination, the defense questioned Kircikyan on the system used to download the data.

Kircikyan responded the program is Cellebrite, and it can do three different types of extractions: physical, file system, and logical.

During a physical extraction, deleted data can be retrieved but not with the other two extractions.

Kircikyan says they were unable to perform a physical extraction on Wright's phone. They did a file system and logical extraction only.

UPDATE (9:45 AM) -- The 2nd witness on the stand Wednesday is Matthew Sands, Commander of the LCSO Criminal Investigations Bureau.

Sands says they assisted the Walmart employee in locating the men in the surveillance video and found the face of a person that appeared to be Rodgers.

When investigating what the subjects had purchased at the Walmart, Sands says a red Budweiser t-shirt appeared to be one of the purchases on the receipt.

Sands says in the surveillance video; they saw who appeared to be Rodgers, shopping for the red Budweiser t-shirt.

When detectives did a walk through of the store, they took a photograph of another red Budweiser t-shirt that was the same as the one purchased.

Sands says they also located other items found in the departments where the men were shopping. Items included a backpack, garbage bags, tool kit, and men's work boots.

When the defense cross-examined Sands, they asked what items were visible in the surveillance video. Sands responded only the t-shirt and box of boots were visible in the shopping cart.

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Prosecutors have resumed calling witnesses to the stand Wednesday morning in the murder trial for Jimmy Rodgers in Fort Myers.

The first state witness is on the stand. Jason Duvall, an employee of Walmart who worked at the Six Mile Cypress location in Fort Myers at the time of Teresa Sievers' murder.

Duvall assisted the Lee County Sheriff's Office with recovering surveillance footage from the Walmart Rodgers allegedly visited while in Fort Myers. He says he was able to locate the subjects LCSO was looking for in the footage. He saw some of the items they purchased and saw what register they purchased them at. Duvall says he was also able to retrieve the receipt of those items.

During cross-examination, the defense asked Duvall what departments the subjects went. Duvall answered hardware, clothing, home, and electronics.

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