Inside the Levi King Courtroom: Day 7 - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Inside the Levi King Courtroom: Day 7

The defense began their case this morning. The first person to take the stand today was Pat Elkins, who was a former McDonald County, Missouri Sheriff's Department employee. She knew King from the time he spent in the county jail on murder charges. She said when she first saw King he "looked like he needed a hug." She said just by looking at him, she was a little concerned about his mental health. She said you could tell he was thinking all the time. She also said she would give him an "A" for behavior while incarcerated. She also said if he was ever released, she would take him home with her. She went on to say that to her knowledge, she did not know of any violent instances involving Levi King while in jail. Lynn Switzer, the Gray County DA countered this statement by showing Elkins several jail reports mentioning fights involving King, one specially that mentions her name as helping to break up the fight. The reports also say King threatened authorities and bragged about smashing in patrol cars and burning a house down.

Larry Houston, a McDonald County deputy, was the next to take the stand today. He worked as a jailer part time. He said he saw a fight between King and another inmate. He said King had a "fantastic" attitude and that he was never afraid of him at any point. He called King a "nice guy" and said he cannot figure out why he did the things he did. Letters written from Levi's mom to him were partially read aloud. They said things like I want you to know I'm so very sorry for deserting you when you needed me the most."

Jamie Moore took the stand next. She was the former Hemphill County Sheriff's Office employee. She was there during the time King was housed there. She testified that Levi often read and had lots of books and played games in the yard with other inmates. She said he was a deep thinker, with a good sense of humor.

Tammy Miller also took the stand today. She works with the McDonald County, Missouri Public Defender's Office. Her job is to investigate the background of the defendant, and find anything that can be used to convince the jury he does not deserve the death penalty. She said while investigating King she found evidence of mental illness. The defense presented several medical records documents that say King acted psychotic, hearing voices on the phone that weren't there, running around knocking things over and attempting to jump out of moving vehicles. She said when she first met Levi he was speaking in sentences that didn't make sense and he was talking in riddles that did not make sense either. She read the transcript of what Levi King said to the family of his Missouri victims after pleading guilty. It said something to the effect of I cannot express how truly sorry I am for what I have done and what I have taken from you. I know what it's like to have a family member taken from you, and I have done the same thing to you. There is no way to apologize for what I've done. She then went on to say that she never once feared Levi.

A civilian employee at the Eastern Regional Diagnostic Correctional Center in Farmington, Missouri was the next to take the stand. She worked in the kitchen at this facility, often supervising Levi and other inmates. She said he started off as working on the line, then began working as a dishwasher, eventually working his way up to prep cook, a position that required him to frequently be around knives and other potentially dangerous kitchen equipment. As far as Levi's character, she said he always did what she told him to, and she never had any trouble with him. She also commented he at time resembled "an adolescent boy, " acting "silly and playful." She said he was respectful of staff.

Things were tense to say the least between the prosecution and the defense today. They had small arguments at the Judge's bench several times throughout the day, with one in particular becoming rather loud and heated.

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