Expert says Duncan's shotgun wouldn't accidentally fire - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Expert says Duncan's shotgun wouldn't accidentally fire

During a July 2nd interview with police Shasta told police, "There's a gun in the back of that red Jeep. It shot off and it hit my brother." During a July 2nd interview with police Shasta told police, "There's a gun in the back of that red Jeep. It shot off and it hit my brother."
A GPS device police found during their investigation contained a list of locations where Duncan had gone to watch children. A GPS device police found during their investigation contained a list of locations where Duncan had gone to watch children.
Police say this is the cabin near a Montana campsite is where Duncan took Dylan. Police say this is the cabin near a Montana campsite is where Duncan took Dylan.
This hatchet was recovered near one of the campsites. Shasta told police that at one point Duncan swung a hatchet at her. This hatchet was recovered near one of the campsites. Shasta told police that at one point Duncan swung a hatchet at her.

BOISE, Idaho - During witness testimony in the sentencing phase of convicted killer Joseph Duncan Wednesday, an FBI firearms experts told jurors Duncan's shotgun could not have discharged accidentally, killing Dylan Groene.

FBI John Webb's testimony debunked Duncan's previous claim that he accidently shot Dylan.

Duncan also claimed he shot Dylan a second time because the injuries the boy suffered from the "accidental" blast would have eventually killed him, and he wanted to end the child's suffering.

Also on KHQ.com

- Jury hears disturbing letter from Duncan to his mother
- Duncan Sentencing: Police interview with Shasta played in court
- Groene shares letters from children; Duncan questions FBI agent
- Jury selected; opening statements made in Duncan murder sentencing
- Judge closes court during Duncan victim testimony
- Duncan's standby counsel want no part in jury selection
- Court rules Duncan mentally competent

Forensic pediatrician Dr. Sharon Cooper took the stand and said Shasta's description of the way Dylan looked after he was shot made it sound extremely painful, but also like it could have been a "potentially salvageable injury."

Duncan asked more questions during witness cross examination Wednesday than any previous day.

He asked Dr. Cooper if it was possible Shasta exaggerated Dylan's injuries, being just a child.

Cooper said it was unlikely because Shasta's interview responses with her, matched responses she gave during a previous interview with a Kootenai County detective.

At one point Duncan told the court, "I'm not really good at this. That's all the questions I have."

The court also heard the narration of an aerial video tape from Clint MCGuffy, a U.S. Forest Service police officer who helped FBI agents find the campsites where Duncan hid, as well as the culvert where it's believed Dylan's ashes were dumped.

FBI special agent Mike Sotka testified about going to the campsites and interviewing Duncan.

During the July 19th, 2005, interview in Coeur d'Alene, Duncan told Sotka he shared certain secrets with Shasta because "...you have to understand Shasta was dead. She was a dead girl and I knew it... It was a secret I wouldn't whisper to myself."

Duncan also taunted the agent saying police had "no clue. They had nothing and I knew they had nothing," referring to the investigation of the Groene house.

On the July 4th, 2005, Sotka found a portion of Dylan's skull during an intensive search. The jury was shown both a photo of the skull and the skull iteslf. DNA testing previously confirmed it was Dylan's skull cap.

When this evidence was offered to the court, Duncan said "I strongy object. I strongly object."

His objection was overruled by the judge.

Other witnesses that took the stand Wednesday included Kootenai County Sheriff's Detective Dan Mattos and FBI Special Agent Mike Truebenbach from the Evidence Response Team.

Special Agent Truebenbach told the court a log was found at the entrance to one of the campsites that read, "Please do not disturb. Thanks." Another inscription read, "Dead end 300ft Occupied May 05-June, please do not disturb."

He also described sifting through a fire pit in which possible human remains were found. Also found at the scene were running shoes, rope, a levis clothing tag, an opened condom, hatchet, and expended shotgun shells.

Duncan plead guilty in December to ten federal charges related to the kidnapping of Shasta Groene and her brother Dylan, and the murder of Dylan.

The jury in Boise is considering whether he deserves life in prison without the possibility of parole or the death penalty.

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