November 21, 1974
Testimony of Richard Mahon (CID)
Scans of original transcript
(THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 21, 1974, 9:45 A. M.)
FOREMAN: All jurors are present.
RICHARD J. MAHON, Having been first duly sworn, was exawined and testified as follows:
DIRECT EXAMINATION BY MR. WOERHEIDE:
Q State your full name, please, Mr. Mahon.
A Richard J. Mahon.
Q Where do you live, sir?
A I am assigned to -- with the CID at Fort Hamilton, New York.
Q That is your post duty, is that it?
A Yes, it is.
Q Do you have a residence in Connecticut?
A My permanent home address is Cady Street, C-a-d-y Street, Danielson, Connecticut.
Q Now, back in 19 -- the latter part of 1971, were you employed then as a CID agent?
A Yes, sir.
Q And where were you assigned at that time?
A I was assigned at Headquarters, U. S. Army CID Agency, in Washington, D. C.
Q Now, in the course of performing your official duties, were you assigned to conduct an investigation with respect to the certain allegations made by former Captain Jeffrey R. MacDonald?
A Yes, sir, I was.
Q And was this investigation predicated on allegations made on the part of former captain MacDonald with respect to the Article 32 proceedings and the investigation in connection with the Article 32 that had been had against him previously?
A Yes, sir.
Q And these allegations were allegations of perjury and destruction of evidence and general incompetence, and this, that and the other thing?
A I believe that was the nature of the allegations, yes, sir.
Q Now, in connection with the investigation, were you assigned to conduct, let's say, interviews with certain persons such as a man named Posey who had testified as a witness at the Article 32 hearing?
A Yes, sir, I did.
Q Do you recall briefly what Posey had testified to?
A Yes, sir, William E. Posey testified that he was a next-door neighbor of a young lady named Helena Stoeckley who was then residing on Clark Street in Fayetteville, North Carolina, and I believe he testified that sometime between three o'clock and 4:30 on the morning of the 17th of February, the morning of the murders, he saw Helena Stoeckley arrive at her residence in a blue automobile, get out of the automobile, enter the house.
He also talked with Helena Stoeckley in the days that followed and became very suspicious of her because she was what he considered to be a hippie, and associated with hippie individuals.
She stated -- she told him allegedly, that she was a witch. She wore dark clothing. She at one time had obtained a number of funeral wreaths and placed them on her lawn, all of which led him to suspect that she could have been involved in the murders.
Q And he so testified at the time of the Article 32, is that correct?
A I don't specifically recall what he said at the time of the 32 in detail, only in generalities. I haven't looked at that transcript in over three years, but I do know that I interviewed him on the 19th and 22nd of March, 1971.
Q All right, where was he located at that time?
A He was located in Alabama.
Q Did you have any trouble finding him?
A Yes, sir, a great deal of trouble.
Q Will you tell us about that?
A Well, he left shortly after he testified at the Article 32 hearing. He left Fayetteville rather abruptly. he told me that he was -- he had a fear of Helena Stoeckley and her friends.
He also told me that he was given a hundred fifty dollars by Lieutenant Malley,who I believe was one of Captain MacDonald's defense counsels, to leave town.
And so he went to Alabama, to Birmingham. He moved once -- he moved at least once that I recall but was in the Birmingham area.
And even -- I had interviewed his sister-in-law. and his mother-in-law, and father-in-law, who were then residing in Fayetteville.
As I recall, none of them could give me an address. They didn't know where he was.
I finally located his grandmother in Birmingham, and his grandmother said that she -- well, she finally told me that she did have contact with him. And it was through her that I was finally able to locate him.
Q All right, now, I take it after you located him you interviewed him?
A Yes, sir.
Q And can you summarize what it was that he told you about -- let's say, first about the night of -- or the morning of February 17, and later how he happened to -- well, get in touch with certain persons as a result of which he testified?
A Well, he told me that he -- essentially that on the morning of 17 February, he had awakened from sleep to go to the bathroom. He didn't know what time it was as he hadn't looked at a clock, but he believed that it was sometime between three o'clock and 4:30 a.m. that morning.
He heard a car pull into the driveway at the residence where Miss Stoeckley lived and he said he saw Miss Stoeckley get out of that automobile and into the residence.
He said that he heard some giggling, although he didn't see people, he believed that there were at least two individuals in the car beside Miss Stoeckley, one of Miss Stoeckley's girlfriends -- at that time she was residing with two young ladies -- was up and painting in the apartment, and he could see her painting, he said.
He didn't recall specifically what she was wearing.
In any case, he talked to Helena a few days later and she told him that she didn't know where she had been on the night of 16 and 17 February, because she told him that, quote, she had been stoned that night; meaning she had used drugs.
She mentioned in a conversation with Posey that someone had seen a hobby horse inside the residence -- child's hobby horse. I don't specifically recall, but I believe there is a photograph of a hobby horse in the newspaper, or somewhere.
So this made Mr. Posey very suspicious. In another conversation with Miss Stoeckley she told him to tell his wife to keep her doors locked, which be said made him very apprehensive. And she had obtained a number of funeral wreaths, put them on the lawn in front of her house.
She was dressing in black clothes almost constantly, and sometime furing June or July, Posey said that he had telephoned a Fayetteville newspaper, Hartline, and had inquired as to who he might contact regarding the MacDonald murder case.
I don't know that he ever got a reply, but on the tenth of August, he was at the Heart of Fayetteville Motel. As I understand he was delivering linen there, picking up linen, and Captain MacDonald's attorney, Mr. Segal and Mr. Eisman were residing at that motel, and Posey contacted them.
He spoke to them on the tenth, and I believe the psked him to come back that evening, and at which time they spoke tohim at length.
He subsequently testified at the Article 32 hearing.
Q All right, now, did he refer to anything that Mr. Segal or Mr. Eisman had said to him as far as a possible reward was concerned?
A Posey stated that Mr. Eisman had brought to his attention the fact that there had been a five or ten thousand dollar reward offered by, I believe, he said, Captain MacDonald's in-laws, for information leading to the identification of the perpetrators of the crime.
He was told this by Mr. Eisman prior to his testifying at the Article 32 hearing.
This is based on information -- this is what Posey related to me.
Q All right, so he contacted them on the tenth of August; according to the record, he testified at the Article 32 hearing on the thirteenth of August at nine o'clock a.m. Now, what happened after his testimony?
A According to Posey, he referred to a hundred fifty dollars from Lieutenant Malley and referred to leaving town after the Article 32 testimony.
On the sixteenth of August, Posey reported that his residence had been broken into. I don't recall that anything had been stolen specifically, but I do recall that he had reported that entry had been gained into the residence through a window;that a screen had been cut or broken.
And I recall something about a knife having been removed from, I believe, the kitchen to the bedroom of the house. And that he, at the time that I interviewed him, said that he believed that Miss Stoeckley and her friends, the friends who were never identified in connection with this, were responsible for breaking into his residence.
And so as time went on, he believed that within a matter of just a few days, he said he became very, very fearful; that his wife had become very, very fearful, and that he decided to leave town.
And in connection with his leaving town, Lieutenant Malley had given him the hundred fifty dollars. That Lieutenant Malley had asked him to drive out to Fort Bragg, and he was given a hundred fifty dollars in cash out there.
So he departed at that time upon receiving the hundred fifty dollars, he departed Fayetteville and proceeded to the Birmingham area.
Q Now, at the time you interviewed Stoeckley, did you prepare a statement for him to sign?
A Yes, sir, I did.
Q Now, before you go into that, did you also ask him to submit to a polygraph examination?
A Yes, sir, I did.
Q Now, which came first timewise, the preparation of the statement or the polygraph examination?
A The preparation of the statement. He was interviewed on 19 and 22 March of 1971. The statement was prepared I believe on the 22 of March for his signature. He was polygraphed on the 13th of June, 1971. He underwent the polygraph examination.
Q All right, a statement was prepared based on what he told you?
A Yes, sir.
Q Did you ask him if he was willing to sign the statement?
A Yes, sir.
Q What did he say?
A He was very reluctant to sign the statement and indicated to me that he had contacted -- he had attempted to contact Mr. Segal. That Mr. Segal -- I believe he said Mr. Segal hadn't been in and that he had talked with Mr. Eisman. Mr. Eisman had advised him not to sign anything until that statement, prepared for his signature had been afforded to Mr. Segal for his review and apparent approval.
Q All right, now in view of that restriction, let's say, imposed by Mr. Eisman, what did you do insofar as getting him to sign the statement?
A He never did sign the statement as I never sent the statement forward to Mr. Segal. Instead I prepared a statement myself, concerning my interview of Mr. Posey.
Q Now, you say he was -- he was asked to submit to a polygraph examinationand he agreed to do so?
A Yes, air.
Q Who was the polygraph examiner?
A Polygraph examiner was Mr. Robert Brisentine.
A Is he regarded as an expert in this field?
Q Yes, sir, he is.
Q Now, was the polygraph examination in fact given to Mr. Posey?
A Yes, sir, it was.
Q And did Mr. Brisentine arrive at any conclusion with respect to his truthfulness or lack of truthfulness with respect to the statements that he made?
A He did.
Q What were his conclusions?
A He concluded that Mr. Posey had not been truthful when he denied giving false information at the Article 32 hearing, and to CID investigators, CID agents, meaning myself.
He further concluded that Mr. Posey was not truthful when he stated he was of the opinion that his residence had been unlawfully entered on the 16th of August.
Also, that Mr. Posey had not been certain of the actual date that he had seen the car arrive at Miss Stoeckley's and had seen Miss Stoeckley get out of the car and enter her house. Nor was he certain of the type of automobile.
And I believe he also concluded that whatever date it was, that Mr. Posey had not actually seen her get out of the car. He saw her walking from a car but hadn't seen her get out of the car; or words to that effect.
Q All right, now, in the course of your investigation did you have occasion to contact Helena Stoeckley yourself?
A Yes, sir, I did.
Q Now, in connection with this investigation, were you able to ascertain whether or not she had been picked up and interviewed immediately after the incident of February 17; that is the murder of the MacDonald -- members of the MacDonald family?
A Sir, as I understand it, numerous people of her age group were interviewed by the Fayetteville police within a matter of days or weeks following the homicides. And Miss Stoeckley had been one of those individuals.
Q And was she also interviewed according to the information you were able to obtain by a CID agent and a lawyer during the course of the Article 32?
A Yes, sir, she was.
Q And that was in conjunction with the testimony given by Posey at that time?
A I believe it was, yes, sir.
Q Now, do you recall when you interviewed her?
A Yes, sir, I initially interviewed her on the 29th of December, 1970, at Fayetteville, North Carolina.
Q And then you also interviewed her on subsequent dates, is that correct?
A Yes, sir, I interviewed her several times. I also interviewed her on the 30th of December, 1970, with another CID agent, Robert Bidwell.
I later traveled to Nashville, Tennessee, where she had moved. And at that time she was not very cooperative. She knew a Fayetteville detective fairly well. He felt that he could get her to cooperate, so he traveled to Nashville with me and he actually interviewed her on the 27th and 28th of February, 1971.
But even he thought he had known her for quite some time was able to obtain her cooperation in the case.
Q And then there was further contact with her in April, is that correct?
A Yes, sir, on the 23rd of April, '71, she was interviewed by Mr. Robert Brisentine, a CID agent in Nashville, Tennessee.
On the 24th of April, she was interviewed by Mr. Brisentine and myself.
Again on the 26th of April, she was interviewed by myself in Nashville.
Q All right, to your knowledge, was Miss Stoeckley during this period of time a drug user?
A Yes, sir, she was. She was a self-admitted drug user.
Q Well, how would you place her as the category of drug users; was she an occasional user, let's say of relatively mild drugs such as marijuana, or was she a heavy and consistent and persistent drug user?
A I would classify her as a fairly heavy drug user, and she used marijuana. She said she used LSD. She used heroin, and she used barbiturates, amphetemines. She tried, I believe, nearly every type of drug she could put her hands on.
Q How about mescaline?
A She admitted she had used mescaline.
Q Was she a drug dealer?
A She admitted to me she had dealt in drugs. And that she had to deal in drugs to support her drug habit; her drug use.
Q Now, did you talk with her about the, let's say, the night of February 16 and February 17, 1970?
A Yes, sir.
Q What did she say?
A She said that she couldn't recall where she was that night between the hours of approximately 1:30, one or 1:30 a.m., until sometime in -- the next morning.
I don't believe she ever was able to recall the time when her memory came back to her.
She indicated that she had been using drugs that night in the form of LSD and mescaline, and that the last thing she remembered doing was getting into an automobile and driving off alone at which time, because of the drug use, she couldn't recall anything that happened after that.
Q Are you sure she referred to LSD and mescaline, or was it heroin and mescaline, and marijuana?
A Well, she was using -- she was using various drugs, but I believe she said that she had used, to the best of my recollection, sometime around midnight, the night of the 16th of February, 1970, she had used LSD and mescaline.
Q All right, now, she says she was in effect stoned out of her mind and didn't -- had no recollection of what happened?
A Yes, sir.
Q Is that right?
A (Nods affirmatively)
Q Now, were there at the time of subsequent interviews, were there any -- did she say anything differently in any way that you recall?
A Well, it seemed that just about every time she was interviewed by myself, she said something different, but on occasions she would say that she had no knowledge whatsoever of the homicides. On other occasions she would say that she would indicate that she knew the identity of the offenders.
But she was very reluctant to let herself be fingerprinted. We did obtain her fingerprints.
But, generally speaking, she was not very cooperative.
Q Did you get hair samples from her?
A Yes, sir, we did.
Q Did you ascertain whether or not at any time during this period she had -- she either had a blonde wig or one of her friends had a blonde wig which she occasionally used?
A Yes, sir, she -- at sometime or other, she did wear a blonde wig.
Q Okay, what was the description you have received of the blonde wig? How long was it?
A As I recall, she borrowed a blonde wig from one of her friends, and it was a short blonde wig.
There was -- long blonde wigs have been mentioned, but I don't believe I was ever able to ascertain that she owned one or had one or borrowed one.
Q She had a friend who had a short blonde wig which she occasionally borrowed?
Q How about boots? They are apparently part of the uniform of girls of that type and living that life style. Did you find out anything about a possible pair of boots?
A Well, she owned a pair of brown boots, as I recall, I believe they were ankle boots.
Q In other words, not high calf-length boots that come up just underneat the knee, but short ankle-length boots?
A (Nods affirmatively)
Q All right, now, did you give her a polygraph examination or was a polygraph examination given to her?
A Yes, sir, she was administered a polygraph examination on the 24th of April, 1971.
Q And was this given by Mr. Brisentine?
A The polygraph examination was administered at Nashville, Tennessee, by Mr. Brisentine.
Q What were his conclusions?
A He concluded that due to Miss Stoeckley's confused state of mind and excessive drug use during the period of the homicides, that a conclusion could not be reached as to whether or not Miss Stoeckley actually knew who had committed the homicides, or even whether or not she was present at the scene of the homicides.
Q Now, apart from her drug use, what was the condition of Miss Stoeckley's health during this period of time?
A Miss Stoeckley was, as I recall, was hospitalized during May -- during April and May of 1970, and I believe for about two weeks during June of 1970.
And she was hospitalized for hepatitis, and I believe, drug use.
Q To your knowledge, does she have a chronic hepatitis condition?
A She claims to have chronic recurring hepatitis.
Q And is that a rather common disorder among drug users?
A Hepatitis is a common disorder among drug users.
Q Now, in the course of the investigation, did you contact people with whom Miss Stoeckley had been associated in the house that she had been living nearby to where Posey lived, or as visitors to that house?
A Yes, sir, as a matter of fact, numerous people were interviewed.
We attempted to locate neighbors of Miss Stoeckley, and I -- I believe that she was actually hospitalized during April and May of 1970 when the tenants of that house were virtually evicted.
In any event, she was in the hospital, and I believe her father had to go and get her clothing from the house.
As a result, by the time that we attempted to locate neighbors, there were very few people in the area who knew anything about Miss Stoeckley.
We were able to locate her two former girlfriends that she had resided with at that Clark Street residence.
Q Now, what were their names, Mr. Mahon?
A Miss Kathy Smith of Wayne, New Jersey, and Miss Dianne Hedden Cazares.
Q Dianne has two N's in it, apparently. All right, will you tell us what information that you elicited from these two former roommates of Helena Stoeckley?
A Well, I obtained written statements from both girls.
The information contained in their statements differs substantially, and as it turned out, Miss Smith had -- really didn't recall where she had been herself on the night in question and had communicated with her girlfriend to determine where she herself was that night.
So, we felt that -- I felt that Miss Cazares probably was giving us a more accurate description of the events of that night.
But in any case, Miss Cazares stated that she recalled the morning of the homicides very well, because about seven a.m., her girlfriend had dropped in at her apartment on her way to work, and stayed for about half an hour.
Her girlfriend allegedly told her that --
Q Let's get the name of the girlfriend.
A Okay, name is Gail Sosa, S-o-s-a.
Q Gail is spelled G-a-i-l. All right, the girlfriend dropped by and what happened?
A The girlfriend told her about the homicides, and --
Q How did she know?
A Mrs. Cazares believed that her girlfriend had heard it on the radio.
Q All right, and that was about seven o'clock, you say?
A About seven a.m., yes, sir.
Q All right, proceed.
A She stated that she was alone at that time, at the time that Miss Sosa arrived. She said that about 7:30 at the time Miss Sosa was leaving or had departed, her other girlfriend who resided there with her, Kathy Smith, returned home.
And she said Miss Stoeckley had returned home sometime after that that morning. Sometime later that day, I believe were her exact words. She didn't give us a time. I don't believe she recalled the time.
But she stated that on the night of the sixteenth, Miss Cazares -- Mrs. Cazares, herself, had worked at the Village Shop in Fayetteville. That Miss Stoeckley had actually driven her to the Village Shop. Miss Stoeckley had not stayed. That she had driven off that night. And she didn't see her again until the next day.
I believe she -- she wasn't certain, but she could not recall whether or not Miss Stoeckley had returned back to the Village Shop with a boyfriend later that night and then had gone out, and --
But in any event she didn't see her until the next day.
Kathy Smith left the Village Shop with three men. And when Miss Cazares returned to the apartment she found a note from Miss Smith saying that she was staying at a trailer which one of the three men was living in. And apparently the three men and Miss Smith had stayed there most of the night.
Mrs. Cazares believed that Miss Stoeckley had spent the night with her boyfriend at that time, Mr. Gregory Mitchell.
In fact, according to Mrs. Cazares, Miss Stoeckley told her that she had spent the night with Mitchell.
Mrs. Cazares stated that she had painted the bathroom in the residence that night. Had not gone to bed all night. That she had gone to her apartment with her boyfriend, an individual named Don Harris. I believe his full name is Shelby Don Harris.
But Harris had fallen asleep on the floor, and she decided that she was going to paint the bathroom.
Mrs. Cazares also indicated she was of the opinion that Helena Stoeckley could not have been involved in anything like this. She didn't believe that Stoeckley was involved in the -- or in any homicides.
Q Okay, now, you testified earlier that you interviewed Kathy Smith and she apparently had no recollection of it, but --
A Well --
Q -- she did say something to you. Now, what was the -- what was it that she said?
A Well, she executed a written statement and it wasn't -- detailing the facts and circumstances, and after the statement was executed, she indicated that her memory had not been good, and so she had communicated with Mrs. Cazares, and Mrs. Cazares had told her where she had been that night, because she hadn't recalled.
But in her statement, prior to her telling me this, Kathy Smith stated that Helena Stoeckley had arrived at home about four o'clock in the morning with Mitchell.
And that she believed she had arrived home in Mitchell's yellow Plymouth, a 1964 Plymouth.
Miss Smith stated that she herself had spent the night at the trailer with the three men, and had arrived back at her own apartment about 3:30 that morning, about a half hour before Miss Stoeckley had returned home.
Q Now, apparently, according to the information you obtained from Cazares and Smith, Stoeckley was reasonably with Gregory Mitchell. Were you able to locate Gregory Mitchell?
A Yes, sir, Gregory Mitchell was interviewed on the 25th of May, 1971. He was interviewed by CID Agent William Ivory.
Q What did he have to say?
A I reviewed his statement, his written statement, and he stated that he had no recollection of what he did or where he was on the night of the homicides.
I believe he indicated -- I believe he was in the Army at the time and stated that he was living with his parents in Fayetteville.
He owned a 1964 yellow Plymouth, a sedan. He was a heroin user. He did not believe he was with Miss Stoeckley on the night in question. But stated, you know, that he could not be certain. He didn't know where he was that night. He had no recollection of the night at all.
Q Now, did he -- was he asked whether or not he had any knowledge of the murders of the MacDonald family?
A He denied having any knowledge.
Q Was he given a polygraph examination?
A Yes, sir.
Q Was it administered by Mr. Brisentine?
A Yes, sir, it was.
Q And what were his conclusions?
A Mr. Brisentine concluded that Gregory Mitchell was truthful when he denied having any knowledge of the murders.
Q Now, you mentioned that Smith, I think it was, had been at Bruce Fowler's trailer that night. By the way, were all these people -- were they all drug users, Kathy Smith, for example?
A Yes, sir.
Q Dianne Cazares?
A I believe she was also, yes, sir.
Q Bruce Fowler, how about him?
A Yes, sir, he was.
A All right, now, you were able to locate Bruce Fowler?
A Yes, sir, I located Bruce Fowler in a prison at Mount Meigs, Alabama. I believe it's M-e-i-g-s.
Q And he had a wife, I take it?
A Yes, sir, he was married and his wife's name was Janice.
Q Were they separated in February -- February 16, 17, 1970 or -- well, we have him in a trailer with Kathy Smith. Tell us about that.
A Yes, sir, as I understand it, both Bruce Fowler and Mrs. Fowler are from Alabama. That Mrs. Fowler's parents were in the Army stationed at Fort Bragg.
And so Mrs. Fowler left her husband for a period of time, and went to live with her parents in North Carolina.
Apparently Mr. Fowler followed her up there. They were not living together to my knowledge in February of 1970. I believe she was employed as a go-go-dancer in Fayetteville, and I'm not certain as to where he was employed, if he was in fact employed.
Q But he was living in a house trailer there?
A He was livinkg in a house trailer in Fayetteville.
Q All right, now, what did he tell you with respect to having any knowledge of the murders of the MacDonald family?
A Well he -- he stated that he did not recall where he was on the night in question.
He denied that he had any knowledge about the homicides, and stated that he did not know where Miss Stoeckley was on the night in question.
He -- he also identified his automobile as a 1967 blue Mustang.
Q All right, was he given a polygraph?
A Yes, sir, he was.
Q And was it given by Mr. Brisentine or Brisenteen?
A Yes, sir.
Q And what were Mr. Brisentine's conclusions?
A Mr. Brisentine concluded that Mr. Fowler was truthful when he denied having any knowledge of the murders.
Q Now, did there come a time in the course of this investigation when you were reassigned?
A Yes, sir.
Q And when was that?
A I believe that occurred in May or June of 1971 when I learned that I was being reassigned and taken off the case.
Q Well, after you -- have we pretty well recovered the Helena Stoeckley part of this thing as far as your investigation was concerned, Mr. Mahon?
A I don't understand what you mean by the word, recovered.
Q Well, is there something I should have asked you that might throw a little further light on Helena Stoeckley's possible connection with this matter that I haven't asked you.
Apparently she doesn't know where she was that night. She was stoned out of her mind. She, being a drug user, being -- also having a certain illness, chronic hepatitis, which caused her hospitalization, she is, I'd say, in bad mental shape and bad physical shape, or was at that time.
She was given a polygraph, the polygraph examiner concluded that -- that he couldn't arrive at any satisfactory determination.
Let me see if I have the language correct. "Due to Miss Stoeckley's confused state of mind and excessive drug use during the period of the homicides, a conclusion could not be reached as to whether or not she knew who committed the homicides or whether she was present at the scene of the murders."
So he couldn't make any determination with respect to her.
As to the other people who were contacted who she could have been with that night, who she has been identified as having been or being associated with, they were examined. One of them was in the house all night long, saw her come in sometime after 7:30 in the morning according to her recollection.
The other had been out of the house, in a trailer. She didn't remember any details. She checked with her friend.
Q There is a difference in time between her and her friend as to when she came home. That is Kathy Smith?
A (Nods affirmatively)
Q And the other persons have no specific recollection of that night, but they all deny having any knowledge of the murders of the MacDonald family, and the polygraph examination confirms that fact.
That is, the examiner concludes that they are speaking truthfully, when they deny having any knowledge of the murders of the MacDonald family, is that correct?
A (Nods affirmatively)
Q Does that pretty much sum up the situation?
A I think it does. All the people who were polygraphed, never had any indication that any of those individuals had any knowledge of -- concerning the homicides.
And there is no doubt that Miss Stoeckley -- no doubt in my mind at least that Miss Stoeckley was a very confused girl during 1970 because of her drug use.
There have been indications where she was not oriented as to time and place on occasion.
Q How about you, Jay?
MR. STROUD: No questions.
MR. WOERHEIDE: Members of the grand jury have any question of Mr. Mahon?
JUROR: Would you please go into the aspect which brought out this hobby horse thing again, please? In other words, what brought up the specific relationship of someone seeing that hobby horse, somewhere?
A Well, sir, I -- there was a hobby horse at the MacDonald residence in a bedroom of one of the children.
There is nothing unusual about it. It was a regular child's hobby horse.
I don't recall seeing the photograph, but I understand that a -- there was a photograph or at least a description of the hobby horse in a newspaper or magazine at some time or other.
Posey said that during a conversation with Miss Stoeckley, she had made mention of a hobby horse being in the residence. She said it was -- I believe she told him somebody had broken the hobby horse or -- in any case the hobby horse as she described it was in the hallway of the residence -- a hallway.
I don't think there's much more I can add about the hobby horse.
JUROR: The three men that the lady Smith was with, what color were they?
A The three men as I recall were all Caucasian. Of the three I interviewed, Mr. Fowler, and he was Caucasian.
FOREMAN: Mr. Mahon, what would you describe the physical -- give me a physical description of Mitchell and Fowler.
A I did not interview Mr. Fowler, and I think I spent a great deal of time trying to determine where he was physically located.
He was in the Army for a while, and as I recall he came home from Viet Nam -- came home from Viet Nam and was living in Florida and Fayetteville.
Seemed to be traveling back and forth every two weeks. So I never actually interviewed him.
He was interviewed by Mr. Ivory, but I don't know --
MR. STROUD: (Interposing) Are you talking about Mitchell or are you talking about Fowler?
A No, I'm talking about Mitchell. I'm sorry, did I --
MR. STROUD: You said Fowler.
A I'm sorry. I made an error.
MR. WOERHEIDE: You interviewed Mitchell but not Fowler?
A No, sir, I interviewed Fowler. I did not interview Mitchell.
MR. WOERHEIDE: Did not interview Mitchell?
A Fowler was located in prison in Alabama. We had a little difficulty locating him.
FOREMAN: What size was he? How much did he weigh? How tall was he and so forth?
A As I recall, Fowler is not a big man. Had dark hair, and I believe he was -- I have seen photographs of him with a moustache. I don't believe he had one in the prison.
But he wasn't -- I would say he was smaller than medium build.
JUROR: Five eight, maybe?
A Height -- it's been so long since I've seen him, sir, I'd hate to estimate what his size was.
JUROR: But he wasn't overweight or fat, but normal size for his height?
A Yes, sir.
FOREMAN: What were the other -- were you able to determine who the other two men were with Fowler in the trailer with Miss Smith?
A As I understand it, one of the men was identified as Charlie Brown.
FOREMAN: Charlie Brown?
A And Mr. Johnnie Laape, L-a-a-p-e, Laape.
FOREMAN: Were they interviewed by anyone? Mr. Laape and Mr. Brown?
A They were not interviewed by me, sir, to my recollection, and I don't know that they were interviewed by anyone after I left the case.
FOREMAN: And you have no idea of what the physical appearance of these two men are?
A No, sir, I do not.
MR. WOERHEIDE: Do you know whether or not any of these names are true and accurate names?
A I -- I cold not even be certain of that point. These were the names that were given to me, and my contacts with Kathy Smith, Mrs. Cazares, Helena Stoeckley.
FOREMAN: What does Miss Smith look like?
A As I recall, Miss Smith was a fairly tall brunette, on the slender side. An attractive young lady.
FOREMAN: How about her hair? A description of her hair, long, short, curly, straight?
A I mainly recall that Miss Smith had straight hair and it was on the long side.
FOREMAN: Was -- you interviewed Mr. Fowler, is that correct?
A Yes, sir.
FOREMAN: Was Mr. Fowler using hard drugs at the time of the homicides?
A I believe he was, yes, sir. He -- I mean -- I'm not -- do not recall exactly what he admitted regarding drug use, but others have indicated that he was a drug user.
I don't -- I cannot specifically recall the specific drugs he was using.
FOREMAN: Would -- if he was using them.
A Or if he was using.
FOREMAN: If he was using heroin or LSD on that night, it's possible that he didn't know in a polygraph where he was, is that true?
A Well --
FOREMAN: I mean he had been telling the truth that he didn't know where he was?
A I'm not a polygraph examiner, nor am I an expert in that field, but as I understand it, if you believe something in your mind and you are examined, then it -- the examiner cannot detect it as being untruthful, because a person being examined actually believes it.
FOREMAN: So what I said was true?
A Yes, sir.
MR. WOERHEIDE: Well, let's put this in context now. You're -- a polygraph was the 12th of June, 1971, is that correct?
A (No answer)
MR. WOERHEIDE: I have a sheet here, Bruce Fowler at the top, says polygraph, 12 June, 1971.
A Bruce Fowler was administered polygraph examination on the 12th of June, 1971. His wife was administered the polygraph examination on the 11th of June, 1971.
MR. WOERHEIDE: Now, that would be a year and a quarter after the murders, is that correct?
A Yes, sir, at that time he said he didn't know where he was.
MR. WOERHEIDE: He said he didn't know where he was on the night of February 16 - February 17, but he said, positively, "I didn't have anything to do with the murder of the MacDonalds, is that correct?
A Yes, sir.
MR. WOERHEIDE: And this polygraph examiner concluded that when he said he didn't have any knowledge of the murders of the MacDonalds, he was speaking truthfully?
A Yes, sir.
MR. WOERHEIDE: That is as far as it goes so far as I know.
FOREMAN: Were you still actively involved in the investigation when you were reassigned?
A No, sir, I was reassigned from Washington, D. C., from the CID Headquarters to the Republic of Korea, where I spent a fourteen months tour of duty.
FOREMAN: So you were not involved in the investigation --
A No, sir.
FOREMAN: -- at the time you were reassigned?
A No, sir.
MR. WOERHEIDE: Anyone else?
JUROR: I was just wondering, Mr. Mahon, what was Mr. Fowler in prison for?
A He was in prison for the offense of burglary.
A Yes, ma'am.
JUROR: Do you know where the offense occurred?
A It occurred in Alabama, sir.
JUROR: I didn't think you were going to say murder, but I was going to ask you.
A I didn't understand that, ma'am.
JUROR: I said I didn't think you were going to say murder.
FOREMAN: Did you attempt to locate Mr. Brown and Mr. -- the other gentleman -- I can't think of his name?
MR. WOERHEIDE: Laape, or Lappe, L-a-a-p-e.
A Sir, at that time we were attempting to interview or locate everybody whose name came to our attention.
And many of the people that we wanted to talk to, we had great difficulty in determining their location, and then actually physically locating them so we could talk to them.
These were just two of many names. I never -- I don't recall how far I progressed in determining really where they were located at that time.
But I do know that we were attempting to locate and interview them. I do not know if they were ever actually located and interviewed.
FOREMAN: I see.
MR. WOERHEIDE: I might say, so far as we know, that they were never located and interviewed. They just, you know, are drifters and there's no telling where they are. The name, Charlie Brown, particularly, might be a pseudonym.
A I might add or explain, that one of the reasons for identifying and locating people was difficult, was because many of the young people were at that time, were transient in nature, were in the service, some were not, and were known in the community by their nicknames. And this made identifying them very, very difficult at times.
FOREMAN: Anyone else? Mr. Stroud?
MR. STROUD: No, thank you.
FOREMAN: Mr. Woerheide?
MR. WOERHEIDE: I have no further questions of this gentleman, at this time.
FOREMAN: Thank you very much. You are excused.
(DISCUSSION OFF RECORD.)
Whereupon, MR. RICHARD J. MAHON, having been recalled as a witness, was examined and further testified as follows:
EXAMINATION BY MR. WOERHEIDE:
Q Mr. Mahon, you understand that your further testimony at this time is pursuant to the oath previously administered?
A Yes, sir.
Q I have a file here which contains a report of an examination made at the North Carolina Memorial Hospital, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, dated May 14, 1970, and the -- it is captioned, Stoeckley, Helena, 315 -- looks like Body Road, Fayetteville, North Carolina. Signed by James S. Howard, III, M. D., Resident, Psychiatry.
And can you identify this as a part of the files that were obtained in the course of the investigation?
A Yes, sir.
Q I think this might be helpful to the jurors, and I won't read this whole report. I will read a part of it.
Says she was admitted on 4-17-70. She was discharged on 5-11-70, and date of this typewritten document is May 14, 1970, immediately after discharge.
And it states at the top, "For the confidential information of physicians, only."
And it says attending doctor, Mario Rayes-Ferez [sic; Perez-Reyes]. Referring: Womack Army Hospital, Fayetteville, North Carolina.
So she apparently was referred up there from Womack. And the physician in charge who prepared the report was James S. Howard, III, a resident in psychiatry.
And I won't read the whole thing, but I think there's some pertinent things here that -- I should read.
Final diagnosis: narcotics addiction in a schizoid personality.
History of the present illness: -- I'll just read a part of that. -- This patient was reportedly well until approximately a year ago when she began using narcotics along with her other high school classmates.
Since that time, she has been increasing her dose schedule and taking approximately everything available, including heroin, opium, LSD, cocaine, Methergine, barbiturates, and has been widely known as a narcotics dealer. Around February, 1970, she began feeling depressed, seclusive, and moved out of her home because her addiction was getting to be too much for her to cover up from her parents who did not know of this.
At that timke she began taking large doses of heroin, as many as eight to nine times a day.
And she reports that over the past three or four weeks, she had tapered herself to the point that she only took two c.c.'s of heroin a day.
The patient also began having pain her right side approximately two days prior to admission. She saw a Womack Army doctor who told her that she may have had hepatitis and recommended North Carolina Memorial Hospital, psychiatric admission.
The patient also reports having, quote, noisy, unquote, dreams; waking up screaming in the past two to three days.
Then it says that she has had the usual childhood diseases and so on and so forth.
Then there's data about her physical examinations, and laboratory data which is not particularly intelligible to me.
Hospital course: The patient was placed on a Methadone withdrawal schedule which was completed after ten days without difficulty.
The patient remained extremely seclusive throughout her hospitalization, denying that she had any psychological factors that may have contributed to her addiction.
She was -- well, maybe I'm wearing the wrong glasses -- she was seen as a schizoid personality, extremely mistrustful, no trusting relationships were established during the hospital course.
The patient vividly described her experiences while using drugs, reported that she intended to continue taking them in the future.
Her attitude seemed to be one of rebellion against all, including her family. And affect seemed generally depressed even at the time of discharge.
She denied suicidal or homicidal thoughts.
Mental status examination on admission revealed a neat white female, appearing her age, without distress.
She was oriented to person and place, but thought that the day was April 26, when it was actually April 17.
Proverbs were abstracted within normal limits. Social sevens were fair. Maybe somebody here knows what this means more than I do.
Six numbers forward, five backward. She was an intelligent, well-informed lady. She denied hallucinations, delusions, and ideas of reference except that two days ago, she felt, quote, outside, unquote, herself. And at times felt that someone was standing over her with a knife and was going to kill her, but then went away.
The patient stated emphatically, quote, I am perfectly normal, unquote. And presented herself as one bragging about her character as a narcotic addict, using most of the jargon of the narcotic addict.
The prognosis of this patient seems poor.
The patient had a medical consultation for the diagnosis of hepatitis. At that time she was placed on isolation on admission. This was discontinued after five days, and apparently she did quite well without further hepatitis.
On the next page, which is an attachment, it's an abbreviated clinical record.
On evaluation here she admitted to drug abuse, using Seconal, heroin and many other drugs.
She stated she would shoot up almost constantly. She stated it had been going on for almost two years.
I'm not quite sure what the precipitating factors were involving her being hospitalized. However, the father gave a history of her working for the Government, and stated that she was involved in four of the biggest busts in the State of North Carolina.
Apparently, recently one of the agents found out that she was using drugs and told her he was disappointed in her and this seems to have upset her greatly.
Currently she feels terribly worthless, unwanted, states that no one is sincere and no one really cares about her.
She is extremely rebellious and sets up situations where she asks for help, and then makes sure that you can't give it to her.
Did you speak to her parents?
A Yes, sir, I did. I interviewed Miss Helena Stoeckley's parents. Her father is a retired military officer, and they both reside in Fayetteville, North Carolina.
Q Mr. and Mrs. Stoeckley?
A (Nods affirmatively)
Q What comments did they have to make about their daughter?
A They commented on the fact that Helena had been a bright student, had completed high school at the age of sixteen, she was born on, I believe the seventh of June, 1952, making her only seventeen years of age at the time of the MacDonald murders.
They described her as a girl that needed constant attention. As a girl who was always seeking constant attention.
Her parents had not wanted her to move out of their home when she did.
During, I believe it was in -- if my memory serves me correctly -- on or around January of 1970 when she actually moved out from her parents' residence.
Q I have a couple of photographs here. Can you identify these as photographs of Helena Stoeckley?
A Yes, sir, I can. This is a photograph of Helena Stoeckley taken by the Bureau of Identification, Police Department, Fayetteville, North Carolina.
The second photograph which has my initials on it and the date 27 April, '71, was obtained from the Metropolitan Police Department, Nashville, Tennessee, and the date on the face of the photograph indicating the date taken, is 31 March, and there is a -- it indicates 1970 and 1971, and the dial is directly between the two, so the photograph doesn't distinguish whether it is 1970 or '71, but I believe this photograph was taken 31 March, '71.
Q And this was taken August 10 of 1970?
A First photograph was taken August 10 of 1970, and my initials -- I believe my initials are on these photographs, also. Part of the initials are. It appears that part of the initials were cut off.
MR. WOERHEIDE: Y'all want to see the photograph of Helena Stoeckley?
(Mr. Woerheide passes photographs to Grand Jurors.)
Q (MR. WOERHEIDE) Is this a photograph that -- of the Fowler chap that you testified about?
A This is a photograph of Bruce Fowler. Bruce Johnnie Fowler -- the date on it appears to be 1971. Looks like June and part of the ink is rubbed off.
I believe my initials were on -- on the back of this photograph, but they are not there any longer. Some of the ink has come off.
Q Is that Kathy Smith?
A Yes, sir. Kathy Ann Smith. The date on the back of the photograph was 5 May, 1971.
To my recollection, this photograph was obtained at the time I interviewed Miss Smith. I'm not certain if this photograph was taken at the time I interviewed Mr. Fowler. I belive it was.
As a procedural thing, as these people were interviewed, we attempted to fingerprint them, photograph them, obtain hair samples, and we did in just about every case.
If no photographs of the individuals were available, I would have one taken so I could bring it back with me.
Q All right.
MR. WOERHEIDE: For the information of the grand jury, I'm referring now to a typewritten document that actually relates to the testimony of Captain MacDonald.
He testified that he had been contacted by the CID in 1971, the month was February, on their reinvestigation of the case; that he had been shown a lot of photographs of various persons, verious individuals, that the CID was covering in their investigation at that time.
And the affidavit -- or the -- I won't say affidavit -- was taken down by an official reporter, over a period of a couple of days.
And I have the transcript here. The date is February 19, 1971, and it is captioned: "A meeting in the above matter" -- that is the matter of Dr. Jeffrey R. MacDonald -- "was held at Philadelphia Bar Association Library, Tenth Floor, Wagner Building, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on February 19, 1971, at 10:30 a.m., before Dianne Scarangelli, Court Reporter.
"Appearances: Colonel Jack C. Pruett and Peter E. Kearns, U. S. Army Criminal Investigation Division, Bernard L. Segal, Esquire, Counsel for Jeffrey MacDonald."
And Segal makes an opening statement which I'll read.
"This is a conference being held in the office of the Philadelphia Bar Association, pertaining to an inquiry made to me as counsel for Dr. Jeffrey R. MacDonald by Mr. Kearns of the Criminal Investigation Division, U. S. Army, and by Colonel Pruett of the same agency.
"The inquiry was made earlier this week about whether we could arrange an interview with Dr. MacDonald. It was set up for this morning at the convenience of the parties.
"I would like if I may just so we understand what we are doing here and why we are here, if you would indicate to me what is your specific assignment in regard to your desire to interview Dr. MacDonald."
Well, then, there's a long colloquy, and then the questions and answers begin, after a great number of pages.
Questions and answers begin on page 28, and I'll get down to page seventy.
"Question: In addition I have some photographs here some of you have seen before, but I would like you to go through them, and I am interested in those people you can identify as having some resemblance, regardless of how remote, or that you can possibly identify as being one of the intruders. Again at any time we have a break, by the way, you are still aware of your rights?
"Question: Regardless if it is five minutes or three hours?
"Question: I understand that perhaps some of the people you have probably seen in photos before. I would like to know again along with Mr. Segal, if you can look through, starting with this you can look through all of them. But these are just I. D. photos. Look through and see those people that you know.
"Question: I am sure that you have seen some of the photos before -- by the way, that's another of the things I want to discuss before we leave today."
And Colonel Pruett says: "There seems to be some misunderstanding on photographs. Again, generally I know what these are, but if you have anything else, suspects now and people that may have any information or any information regarding any of these people, you recognize as having any connection with the family at all --
"Answer: This girl, Judy, from San Antonio (showing a picture of a girl that was at a party he was with, he says that's Judy from San Antonio).
"Mr. Segal: Let me just describe something. Captain MacDonald is looking at a large three-ring green looseleaf binder without any identification. It contains about twenty black sheets of paper with plastic holders.
"On page one, there are approximately five photographs that are turned fce up, color photographs, and he has indicated.
"Answer: (Continued) Well, it looks as though she is in some other ones.
"Mr. Segal: He is indicating identification form, page one.
"Answer: (Continued) This looks like her. That's all I would --
"Mr. Kearns: We got these from various police departments, and we would like to see any of these again, I could probably go get a better one.
"Colonel Pruett: You realize, of course, they are not taken under the ideal laboratory conditions.
"By Mr. Kearns: Can you identify her as one of the assailants?
"Answer: I probably sound like I'm avoiding the issue, but not from the photograph. I can't do that. I just can't do that.
"There are a number of reasons. Assuming just for the sake of argument that she was there, the conditions and the shortness of my being there, she was least likely for me to be able to identify.
"I would say out of the four that I saw, the four people, she is the least likely. I said this at the hearing.
"You know, it was really very quick. It is hard to -- it is really hard to get across how quick this occurred and how little I saw.
"This is not a case of looking at someone's face like I'm looking at you and thinking of her. It was just like that. That was all it was.
"I know I was seeing blonde hair. For instance, I would say from the face, not from this, the nose looks really prominent here. It looks like you would remember the nose right away.
"Mr. Segal: Let me indicate they were talking about a page that contains three black and white photographs approximately two by three inches, with each one of the pictures a white female holding a card, police identification card with the following information: city, county, ABC, Bureau of Identification, Fayetteville, North Carolina."
Underneath it appear the numbers: 36607, followed by the date, 8-10-70.
So that's the photograph -- one of the photographs that's being circulated here.
And then they go through a whole series of photographs, and Mr. -- Captain MacDonald doesn't identify, really, any of them.
So, he was shown as I say, Helena Stoeckley's photograph and didn't identify it.
I recall that Posey told you that Eisman told him that there was a reward of five thousand or ten thousand dollars before he took the stand and testified. And then Malley gave him a hundred fifty dollars.
Now, do you recall Posey informing you in any respect about his having a discussion with Segal or Eisman or Malley about giving information to the CID or the police concerning what he knew?
A Yes, sir, he -- during my interview of Mr. Posey, he mentioned that he had been told by Mr. Eisman, I believe, that he should not submit to any -- to an interview by the CID with the CID unless he or Mr. Segal was present or words to that effect.
And also as I've indicated, Posey told me that he had communicated with Mr. Eisman, and Eisman had told him not to sign the statement I had prepared for him until Mr. Segal had reviewed it.
Q You described some of these people, but I'm not sure you described Posey. What sort of a fellow; how old is he and what does he look like?
A Mr. Posey is a young man. He is in his early twenties, or was in his early twenties at that time. He is married to a young lady, and at the time during 1971, during 1970, I'm sorry, I believe his wife was pregnant.
I recall Posey as being, I believe, a native Alabaman, and smaller than medium build or somewhat smaller.
Q Now, we talked about Bruce Fowler and your interview with him and the fact that he had a wife. But we didn't talk about your interview with his wife. Tell us about that.
A Well, as I previously indicated, Bruce Fowler's wife, Janice, Janice's parents were in the Army stationed at Fort Bragg. She left her husband in Alabama and went to reside with her parents.
Sometime thereafter, her husband followed her to Fayetteville.
My best information is that Bruce and Janice Fowler did not reside as man and wife in Fayetteville. That he had a -- he was residing in a house trailer with two other people, and the occupants of the trailer, you know, could have changed. I don't know. I'm not certain how long Fowler actually lived in that trailer.
But in any case, during February of 1970, Mrs. Fowler apparently traveled to Cincinnati, Ohio, and was there for a period of about three weeks.
Q Was she polygraphed?
A Mrs. Fowler was interviewed, and she executed a written statement and she was administered the polygraph examination on the 11th of June, 1971.
She stated that she had no knowledge of the homicides, and polygraph examination by Mr. Brisentine verified that in that Mr. Brisentine concluded that Mrs. Fowler was truthful when she stated that she had no knowledge of the homicides.
Q And I understand that the Grand Jurors are particularly interested in Kathy Smith and these three men. That is -- that would be Fowler, Charlie Brown and Laape.
Now, you found Fowler and interviewed him, took a statement from him, polygraphed him, but you were -- while you were working on the case not able to run down Charlie Brown and Laape?
A (Nods affirmatively)
Q Were you able to ascertain whether they were all Caucasian or whether one of them was black?
A Mr. Fowler was Caucasian, and my information is that the other two individuals were also Caucasian.
MR. STROUD: Where did you get that information?
A I believe that information is included in a written statement of Mrs. Cazares, and that Kathy Smith also verified that.
Q (MR. WOERHEIDE) And --
A (Interposing) I'd have to double check that point, but I believe that's where we got the information.
Q I might say to the Grand Jurors and the foreman, I'm having Mr. Murtagh make a check to ascertain if these persons referred to as Charlie Brown and Laape -- what's Laape's first name?
A (Nods affirmatively)
Q -- were ever located. He doesn't know that they were not located. He doesn't know that they were located, and he is going to seek out that information.
MR. WOERHEIDE: I don't have any further questions of Mr. Mahon at this time. Here's Bruce Fowler, or not -- is it Bruce Johnnie Fowler?
MR. STROUD: Right.
MR. WOERHEIDE: Here's Kathy Smith. If you want me to, I'll pass them around.
(Mr. Woerheide passes photographs among the Grand Jurors.)
MR. WOERHEIDE: Mr. Page and Mr. Benton say they'd like to spend a little time with me over the lunch hour. I notice it's 12:10, now. Want to break?
FOREMAN: Anyone else have anything they want to ask Mr. Mahon?
FOREMAN: All right, thank you, sir. We will break for lunch.