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Tuesday updates (10/15): Jimmy Rodgers murder trial

Posted at 9:58 AM, Oct 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-15 21:51:42-04

**Watch here: Jimmy Rodgers trial for the murder of Teresa Sievers in Lee County**

UPDATE (7:00 PM) -- The defense requested multiple motions for a mistrial on Tuesday.

The first motion for a mistrial came when the defense questioned Lieutenant David Lebid on what had happened during the first visit to Rodgers's home.

Lt. Lebid began to say Rodgers appeared a bit "frantic" when he saw detectives were at his home waiting for him. During the initial visit to Rodgers's residence, only his former girlfriend Taylor Shomaker was home upon their arrival.

Lt. Lebid said that Rodgers was willingly talking to them but refused to give a recorded sworn statement.

The defense used Lt. Lebid's statement to motion for a mistrial, saying that statement violated Rodgers's right to remain silent. The state responded that Rogers willingly spoke with detectives.

Judge Bruce Kyle denied the motion for mistrial and ordered the state to move from that line of questioning.

The defense also requested another mistrial motion. The defense argued that statements made by Lt. Lebid would encourage the media to say Rodgers was on probation before coming to Florida for the Terese Sievers murder trial.
Judge Kyle denied the motion, saying the media already knew Rodgers had been on probation. He added that jury members were instructed not to watch or read any news regarding the trial.

The defense also raised concerns as to where Lt. Lebid would say detectives informed Rodgers the charges he was facing. The states wanted Lt. Lebid to say it was in a holding facility to provide context for the jury members. The Defense argued that it was not necessary, and it would lead to prejudice towards the case.

When testifying with the jurors present, Lt. Lebid referred to the location as a "facility" only, and he did not specify what type of facility.

Witness testimonies will continue Wednesday.

UPDATE (2:05 PM) -- The jury has returned to the courtroom and questioning has resumed.

UPDATE (1:50 PM) -- The defense made a motion for mistrial following lunch break Tuesday, over Lt. Lebid's testimony of Rodgers refusing to give a recorded sworn statement when questioned at his home. Judge Kyle denied the motion.

The State was urged to move away from that line of questioning.

Defence moves for mistrial in Rodgers case Tuesday; motion denied


UPDATE (12:10 PM) -- Court proceedings have stopped for lunch until 1:30 pm.
UPDATE (11:30 AM) -- Lt. David Michael Lebid of the Lee County Sheriff's Office Homicide Unit is the 3rd witness of the day.

UPDATE (11 AM) -- FBI DNA case work unit member Serri Fentess is the 2nd witness of the day.

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Day 10 of the Jimmy Rodgers murder trial is back in session. Before witnesses are brought out, the defense was addressing the issues with the FBI evidence they say they did not receive or could not access.

After a short intermission, the jury was brought in and questioning began with Linda Otterstatter, an FBI trace evidence examiner.