- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 24, 2002

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) Escorted by law-enforcement vehicles, jurors in the capital murder case of Reginald and Jonathan Carr yesterday boarded a city trolley to tour the scenes of a nine-day crime rampage nearly two years ago.

In pouring rain, the trolley slowly drove by the house where Ann Walenta was shot, as well as the house where five friends were abducted and the soccer field where they were later shot. They also drove by the house where the sole survivor of the shootings ran for help and the spot where the murder weapon was found at the side of a highway.

They also went by the four automated teller machines where the victims were taken, and the apartment complex where police say Reginald Carr was arrested with most of the stolen property from the quadruple shooting victims.

The trolley did not make any stops at the crime sites.

The brothers face 113 charges, most of which stem from the events of Dec. 14-15, 2000, when five friends were abducted from a Wichita home, forced to engage in sexual acts and forced to withdraw money from ATMs before they all were shot. The two women were raped. Aaron Sander, 29; Brad Heyka, 27; Jason Befort, 26; and Heather Muller, 25, died. Mr. Befort's girlfriend, then a 25-year-old teacher, survived and ran for a mile to find help.

The Carrs also are being tried in the Dec. 11, 2000, attempted robbery and shooting of Mrs. Walenta, 55, who later died, and a robbery four days earlier in which Andrew Schreiber was abducted and forced to withdraw cash from ATMs.

The Carr brothers are black. All their victims were white. The case has provoked criticism from some who accuse prosecutors of ignoring racial hatred as a potential motive in the crime spree.

As jurors were on their tour of sites related to the crimes, lawyers were in the courtroom hashing out some of the legalities and practicalities of the case against the brothers.

District Judge Paul Clark ruled jurors will be allowed to find the brothers guilty of lesser crimes, such as first-degree or second-degree murder rather than capital murder for the killings. Defense attorneys tried unsuccessfully to make voluntary manslaughter one of those options.

Judge Clark also told prosecutors and the two defense teams for the brothers that they each had two hours to make their closing arguments.

The judge also decided that because all the evidence in the case will not fit in the jury room, the courtroom would be used for deliberations. The courtroom's windows will be covered.

Jurors also would have access to computer presentations used by prosecutors during the trial, as well as the racks of clothing, televisions and computers entered into evidence.

Prosecutors are nearing the end of their case, and they began presenting DNA evidence when jurors returned from their tour yesterday.

Joe House, a forensic scientist with the Kansas Bureau of Investigation, testified that he found blood and seminal fluid on swabs taken from the two women who were raped.

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