DAY FOUR: Murdered family’s neighbor testifies accused was at scene of the crime
PORTSMOUTH — The neighbor who made the 911 call after the fatal shooting of the Ed Mollett family has become the third witness to say that Kara Garvin was at the scene on the evening of the murders.
On Dec. 22, 2008, Ed Mollett, his wife, Juanita, and their daughter, Christina, were shot to death at their trailer on Snook Road in Franklin Furnace.
Garvin, 30, also of Franklin Furnace, is on trial for the murder of the trio and could face the death penalty if convicted.
The sole eye witness to the shootings was the couple’s then 6-year-old grandson, who ran to the home of James “Bob” Damron for help. Damron took the witness stand Thursday morning in the courtroom of Scioto Common Pleas Judge Howard H. Harcha III.
“I’ve seen her around plenty of times,” Damron told the court. “I’ve seen her go up the driveway.”
Damron testified that Garvin had visited Ed Mollett the day before the murders. Damron and Mollett were sitting in Mollett’s truck listening to the radio at the time.
“Ed started to talk with her,” he said.
On the evening of the shootings, Damron was on the porch of his trailer, down the dirt road from the Mollett home.
“I was sitting out, smoking a cigarette a little past six, waiting for Ed,” he said. “I was going to go out and drink beer with him.”
He said he saw a Jeep-type vehicle go past him heading up the road to the Molletts. A few minutes later the vehicle came back down.
He testified that Garvin was in the vehicle.
Under cross examination by co-defense counsel Charles Knight, Damron testified that Garvin was driving the Jeep both times that he saw her.
“She was driving, sir,” Damron said. “She had dark hair.”
That conflicts with testimony by Garvin’s one-time boyfriend, Paul Balmer. On the witness stand Wednesday Balmer said that he had driven Garvin and himself to the Mollett home. He also testified that Garvin did not dye what he described as her dirty blonde hair black until hours after the shootings occurred.
Also testifying Thursday morning was Teresa Mosley, currently an inmate in a Franklin County facility serving time for attempted escape and trafficking in cocaine. She spent several months in 2009 in the Scioto County Jail where Garvin is now housed.
“When I was arrested, Kara was there,” Mosley said. “I got to know her. We’d hang out.”
It was on those occasions that Garvin told Mosley about the shootings, the woman testified.
“That she killed Ed Mollett, Juanita and Christina and that she would kill the kid if she got out,” Mosley said. “Supposedly they dealt pills a lot.”
Most of the day focused on testimony by expert forensic specialists on the clothing and gun reported to be the murder weapon.
The prosecution rested its case Thursday afternoon with the defense set to begin on Monday.
The case could possibly go to the jury by next Tuesday or Wednesday.