CIA Slayings Testimony Conflicts
Nov. 07, 1997
FAIRFAX, Va. (AP) _ A police crime scene investigator today contradicted the accounts of two other prosecution witnesses, both CIA men wounded in a shooting spree outside the agency's headquarters. He said stress could cloud a person's memory.
Before the prosecution rested in the murder trial of Mir Aimil Kasi, Fairfax County police investigator Jeffrey Miller said his work showed Nicholas Starr was hit once, not twice in the shoulder, and Calvin Morgan could not have shielded himself with his car's arm rest as he testified Wednesday.
Miller said Morgan's account would have been affected by the stress he was experiencing. ``I'm sure his perception of exact sequence of events would be clouded,'' Miller said under cross-examination by one of Kasi's lawyers.
Miller took photographs and measurements at the scene of the Jan. 25, 1993, shootings that killed two CIA employees, wounded two others and injured a telephone company worker assigned to CIA headquarters.
Only one witness, former CIA employee Angela Clark, testified that she saw the gunman clearly enough to identify him.
Both sides in the case told the judge today that Ms. Clark's testimony was disputed in a call from a lawyer described only as representing a fired CIA employee. The lawyer claimed Ms. Clark gave a statement to CIA investigators on the day of the shooting in which she said she could not identify the gunman.
Prosecutor Robert F. Horan Jr. told the judge he called Ms. Clark on Thursday night and she denied ever making such a statement. Judge J. Howe Brown called a recess so the defense could investigate.
Kasi shot into cars waiting at a traffic light outside CIA headquarters but skipped female drivers and passengers because it was against his Muslim religion to shoot women, he told an FBI agent.
After the shootings, Kasi said he ate lunch from a McDonald's restaurant and bought a plane ticket home to Pakistan, FBI agent Bradley J. Garrett testified Thursday.
The 33-year-old suspect gave a detailed confession while he was being flown back to the United States, said Garrett, who accompanied him.
Kasi could get the death penalty if convicted of capital murder, the most serious charge he faces.
Kasi was a fugitive for more than four years before Garrett and three other FBI agents snatched him from a hotel room in Pakistan and returned him to this country in handcuffs and shackles.
On board the plane, Kasi waived his rights to be silent or have a lawyer, then discussed the shooting for 90 minutes and signed a written outline of the conversation, Garrett said.
Kasi's lawyers maintain the signature was forced.
Kasi thought the United States, and the CIA in particular, wielded too much authority in Muslim countries, Garrett told the jury on the fourth day of Kasi's trial.
He also was angry over the Persian Gulf War and the treatment of Palestinians by ``American components,'' presumably Israel, Garrett said.
Kasi told Garrett he chose the CIA compound in suburban Langley to ``convey a message to the United States,'' because he knew the road layout well, figured cars would be waiting at the light and believed CIA employees would not be armed.
He packed an extra 150 rounds of ammunition in case he confronted police, but left before officers arrived because ``there was no one left there to shoot,'' Garrett testified.
Kasi deliberately ignored two female drivers and did not shoot at Judy Becker Darling, whose husband Frank, 28, died in the car seat next to her, authorities said. Lansing Bennett, 66, was shot to death in another car.
Kasi told Garrett his Muslim religion prevented him from shooting the women.