Created: Tue, 27 Aug 2013 05:26:00 EST
Updated: Tue, 27 Aug 2013 08:59:37 EST
Pamela Moss was not in court as the state presented its case against her. Moss' defense attorney, Franklin Hogue, says because of her mental state, Moss wouldn't have been able to handle Tuesday's courtroom environment.
"She's very fragile," said Hogue. "She's not able to hold it together throughout proceedings, especially the kind of evidence we're hearing today."
Moss' is accused of the 2012 murder of Doug Coker. Judge Trenton Brown allowed Moss to stay in jail as the trial ensues but the family of the Henry County businessman sat through graphic photos and presentations of evidence used in his murder.
Bibb County Sheriff's Investigator James Jones and another sheriff's deputy discovered Coker's body on the night of March 18 while trying to make contact with Moss at her home. He says when arrived at the home in the River North subdivision he noticed a strong odor of methane gas, a red Ford Taurus was in the driveway.
Jones said it seemed that it hadn't moved for a while because of the amount of pollen that settled on it. Jones said lights were randomly turning on and off throughout the house, he assumes they were set by a timer.
After not getting an answer, Jones said he ventured to the back of the home where he not only smelled the methane gas getting stronger, the smell of a decaying body became noticeable. Jones said he peeked through the back patio door and noticed a black tarp covered with roofing shingles and lime.
"I removed part of the black tarp back to see what was under it," Jones told District Attorney Fred Bright while on the stand. "And I found a male, white male."
The state presented photos of Coker's decaying body to the courtroom, partially wrapped in a black plastic tarp. The lime spread over Coker's body was designed for lawn care and didn't do much to hide odor.
Jones County blood splatter expert Kenneth Gleaton described the scene as "very bloody".
"Enumerable blood stains on the wall, ceilings, furnishings," he said.
Gleaton says he was able to determine the murder took place in the living room. It was there he noticed another attempt at a cover-up. White paint was poured over a heavy blood stain with a white tarp covering the paint. Gleaton says they were able to spot 228 individual blood spots in the living room along but says there were more.
Gleaton says traces of blood suggests Coker's body was dragged from the living room through the back door and down the steps of the patio. Blood was found along the length of the house through the back lawn as Coker's body was placed at the door underneath the patio.
The state presented Moss' presumed murder weapon, a 16-inch claw hammer, along with a bloody tub found filled with cleaning supplies and a fragment of Coker's skull. A receipt of purchases of 2 gallons of bleach from Kroger's on Tom Hill Sr. was found in the yard. The two gallons were found near Coker's body, one empty and the other near empty.
Gleaton says surveillance video from Kroger spots a woman fitting the description of Pamela Moss buying the bleach at the time stamped on the receipt.
Hogue says there is no denying his client is responsible for Coker's death.
"It's plain, our defense is she has a mental health problem," he said.
A defense Bright is chipping away at.
"It was obvious someone was trying to hide the body?" Bright asked Gleaton who responded "Yes."
Moss served eight years in prison after pleading guilty to involuntary manslaughter in the poisoning death of her mother in 1996.
Testimony will resume Wednesday morning.