August 21, 1979
MR. SEGAL: I think I had better call Wade Smith, Your Honor. Bear with me a second; Mr. Smith has the next witness.
THE COURT: Be careful what you call him. He is a former football player, too.
(Whereupon, PAUL WISHINSKI was called as a witness, duly sworn, and testified as follows:)
MR. BLACKBURN: Your Honor, may we see you at the bench a moment?
THE COURT: Come up.
B E N C H C O N F E R E N C E
MR. BLACKBURN: This is character.
THE COURT: Where is this witness from?
MR. SMITH: This witness is from Vermont or Maine.
THE COURT: What do you want to prove by him?
MR. SMITH: We want to prove very briefly that our client has a good character and reputation, and we feel that we can do it rapidly, efficiently and get this man off this stand in just a few minutes.
THE COURT: Can you do it in three minutes?
MR. SMITH: I will give it everything I've got to do it in three minutes. I think I can do it fast. Let me give it a try and just see what I can do.
THE COURT: All right. See this thing here? In three minutes it is going to fall.
MR. SMITH: All right, let's see what happens.
(Bench conference terminated.)
D I R E C T E X A M I N A T I O N 4:19 p.m.
BY MR. SMITH:
Q I think I better have you to state your name again so we can understand you?
A Paul Wishinski.
Q Mr. Wishinski, where do you live?
A In Montpelier, Vermont.
Q And do you know Jeffrey MacDonald?
A Yes, I do.
Q How long have you known him?
A I have known Jeff -- let's see, 1961 is when I first met him.
Q How did you first meet him?
A In Princeton University. I was his roommate for two years.
Q After he ceased being your roommate, did you see him from time to time?
A Yes, I did.
Q Did he cease being your roommate because he married Colette MacDonald?
A Yes, he did.
Q Now, during the years since that time, have you kept in touch with Dr. MacDonald?
A Yes. I kept in touch with letters that Colette and Jeff had written to me through the time period. I was overseas after I left Princeton and was in the Peace Corps.
Q Based on everything that you know about Dr. MacDonald, do you have an opinion now as to his reputation for peacefulness?
A Yes, I do.
Q What is it?
A I very strongly feel that he is a very peaceful person.
Q Based upon everything you know about him, do you believe him to be a non-violent person?
A Yes, he is non-violent.
Q Do you have an opinion as to his truthfulness?
A Yes, I do.
Q What is your opinion as to that?
A He is extremely truthful.
Q Have you seen Jeff with children?
A Yes, I have.
Q Would you state for the jury his demeanor and attitude toward children?
A I knew Jeff's relationship with children when I babysat for them many times. In the third year that I knew him -- it would have been '63 -- I saw him play with his children -- with Kimberly growing up with him in his home. His relationship with his children was always a very loving relationship.
MR. SMITH: You may examine the witness.
MR. BLACKBURN: Two questions, Your Honor.
C R O S S - E X A M I N A T I O N 4:22 p.m.
BY MR. BLACKBURN:
Q Where were you in February of 1970?
A I was overseas in Nepal.
Q You have no personal first-hand knowledge of what happened at the MacDonald apartment in 1970 in February, do you?
A No, I don't.
MR. BLACKBURN: No further questions.
THE COURT: Call your next witness.