Now, when you put a child on the witness stand in
court and they're being direct examined by one side and
cross-examined by the other, you're going to expect the
child to get confused and going to expect the child to
have problems, and you worry about that. Because nobody
wants to take advantage of a child and nobody wants the
fact that the child has to be in the courtroom. And if
y'all have taken any offense about the fact that we had
cross-examined the children, I hope that you would simply
keep in mind that it's something that has to be done in a
situation like this. There's no way to avoid it. It's
not something that should vary to be done in a courtroom.
These questions about the child's concept of what's
real and what's not real should have been asked in a
therapy session. When the child is setting in therapy
session and saying real babies were killed in outer
space, the therapist's response should be to do something
to get that child back in contact with reality, not with
a set of ritualistic or satanic charts and start working
with the child and go off into yet another wild story.
What does that do to the child, his sense of what is true
and what's is not? I think Doctor Shopper put it very
accurately when he said, "Yes, children will tell you the
truth. They'll tell you what they understand the truth
to be. It doesn't necessarily mean it is the truth.
It's whatever they think is true." At one time this
child thought it was true that babies had been killed
that it happened out of space when she was a little bitty
child. It's a story that should not make any sense to
her now. She's got a lot of confusion at this point
about which stories are real and which ones not, what
she's supposed to say and what she's not supposed to say.
You look at Andy. Now, here's a child
that's old enough to know that you're not hung by your
neck from a limb and tree. You die. Here's a child
that's old enough to know that there's not a salt water
pond behind Mr. Scott's house that's full of sharks and
they take them out in the water and let them swim around
the boat while the cook from day care throws food out to
keep them circling around the boat. And then when you
had your fun for today, you scoop them up with a shark
machine that Mr. Scott invented. These are the children
that -- they should know better. They should know the
difference. But they can't know the difference now.
Because it's one thing they learned in the last three
years is that when you talk about this topic, anything
goes. And if you want something sad to see in a case,
that's something sad to see.
How many "yes" or "no" questions have we had in this
case? How many statements that are being made by parents
to you that sound like full-blown statements out of a
child's mouth are actually their reconstructions of
You recall Doctor Everson said you don't ask
questions like "did Mr. Bob put his ding-dong in your
mouth?" You recall that that's precisely the question
that Michelle Zimmerman asked in her first session with
the first children she saw.
Now, you can say or you can ask that question "did
Mr. Bob put his ding-dong in your mouth?" The child says
"no." You ask it several more times and the child says
"yes." And you reconstruct that to say Kyle or Brian, or
whoever you want, whoever's name you want to put in
there, said Mr. Bob put his ding-dong in his mouth.
Well, the child didn't say it. And for the most part the
child didn't say the things when they were on the witness
stand. Remember that. Remember those issues. Those are
critical issues because they do make a difference,
because they're important in this case. Because you
remember, it's not what the children said so much as it
is how do they come to say it.
They also talked about reasonable doubt. And yes,
ladies and gentlemen, if you have a reasonable doubt as
to any elements of any of the charges, then you are not
to find Bob Kelly guilty of those charges. But it's
important that you focus on what it is that you do not
have doubts about. You don't have to wonder whether
there was real or pretend snakes. We don't have to prove
whether the snakes, the kids talked about, were real or
pretend. Whether the animals that they talked about or
puppets as some of the children said, whether they were
real. None of that has to be proved to you beyond a
reasonable doubt. And none of that information is
elements of the case.
Now, it's important for you to look at. And we have
never said it wasn't important. You need to look at
everything that the children said before court and in
court. You need to think about what the children said
when they were on the witness stand. You need to think
about what the parents said they said. You need to think
about the way that they talked with them. The way they
took their journals. You need to think about the fact
that they were in therapy sessions. I know that you're
not going to be able to remember everything that
everybody said, but that's why it was presented. It's
presented because it is important. It is important for
you to know what was said and how it was said. But some
of those things the defense seemed to ask about ....What did
the defense ask about? The defense went through and
asked about everything but what Bob Kelly did. They went
through and asked about snakes and frogs and everything
weird that they could find in any of the therapy notes.
And they asked about what other people did, what the
children said the other people did to them. But they did
not cross-examine the children on the actual allegations
that they made against Bob Kelly that are the subject of
the charges that are pending in this case. Why? If they
wanted to know the truth about the actual charges, about
the actual allegations of child sexual abuse, why didn't
they ask about it. Their own experts say that is the
best way to find out.
Doctor Raskin says you can say "tell us about that"
and you'll get the complete story. But they didn't. We
don't have to prove everything the children said is true.
And ladies and gentlemen, we have put on expert,
Mark Everson, to say that children don't always say --
that when children talk about these things that not
everything they say is absolutely true. And that part of
some of what the expert says is true, that children
because of their age, their developmental level, their
language difficulties, their perception, their lack of
knowledge don't always understand everything. They don't
If you think about your own dealings with children,
they don't see things as adults do. They don't even see
things as older children do. There are things they do
not understand because of their lack of knowledge at that
age. They're not always able to articulate to us what it
is they're trying to tell us.
How many conversations have you had with children
where you spend several minutes just trying to make sure
that you're on the same wave length? Make sure that you
really understand what the child was asking and to make
sure that the child really understands what it is you're
actually saying because it doesn't actually meet up? You
have to talk in a different level. You can't always
bring them up to your level like Doctor Raskin suggests.
You have to get down to their level and talk to them in a
way that they will understand. Make sure you understand
what they're saying and they understand what you're
The children now talk about seeing pretend babies
and pretend animals, puppets. Well, at two, three, four
years old children see a puppet show and they may think
it's real. They talk about their stuffed animals as
being real. There are things that are real to young
children, but not real to children as they get older.
Not real to us. We don't know what they're saying, all
the things that they talked about.
But again, we don't have to prove whether or not
there were real dolls or not; whether or not a hamster
was actually killed or children were made to believe a
hamster was killed. What we have to prove is the
elements of the offenses that the Judge will charge you
on tomorrow. That's what we have to prove to you beyond
a reasonable doubt. That the children know what they are
talking about when they told you that Bob Kelly stuck his
finger up their butt. That Bob Kelly put his penis in
their mouth. If you believe that they know what they're
talking about there, and that that's true and that's not
fantasy, that's reality base, then we've proved our case.