Defense witness raises questions about dating websites and deleted files in David Dooley retrial

Posted at 12:37 PM, Mar 11, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-11 18:17:23-04

BURLINGTON, Ky. — A defense witness shared new information about deleted files and dating websites in the David Dooley trial Monday.

Andrew Garrett independently analyzed the computer belonging to Michelle Mockbee, who was found dead at Thermo Fisher Scientific in 2012, and her husband, Dan Mockbee. Garrett said there were a number of pop-ups and searches for dating websites.

The defense has been trying to make the case that Dan Mockbee could be involved in his wife's death, saying they were having marital problems. David Dooley, a coworker of Michelle Mockbee, stands charged with murder in her death. But the defense has been trying to show that there were other people with opportunity and motive.

In opening statements, the defense speculated about Dan Mockbee, saying he had deleted files off a laptop not long after getting a call that police were at the warehouse where he and Michelle worked. Howeber, prosecutors said the time is wrong and he didn't delete anything then.

Garrett said his analysis showed Michelle's home and work computers accessed dating sites including eharmony and others in the months before her death.

There was also the issue of a faulty recorder during Dooley's police interview. Garrett said it wasn't a battery problem, as a detective has previously said, and claimed it was planned.

"In my opinion, the files were created and deleted afterward, that's the only way the device works," Garrett said.

Theory about murder weapon doesn't make sense, forensics expert says

A professor said the main theory about what was used to kill Michelle Mockbee doesn't make sense.

Earlier Monday, jurors heard from Roger Haut, a mechanical engineering and forensics expert who studies skull fractures.

Prosecutors have said they believe a tape dispenser was used both to wrap Mockbee's hands behind her and to bash her head in.

Haut, called by the defense, said that it physically couldn't cause her injuries.

"My conclusion is that instrument, wielding it I believe as fast as anybody could, could not produce these cranial fractures on that subject," he said. "It's just not possible, using Newtonian physics and based on my own lab work."

Authorities have said the tape gun may be only part of what was used to kill Mockbee.

A jury convicted Dooley of her murder two years later, but the conviction was later thrown out after the defense argued they did not receive some video evidence in the case.

Closing in the retrial could start as soon as Tuesday.