It is Tuesday, September 30th at 8:32 a.m. Present is myself, Kathi Alizadeh, and Sheila Whirley of St. Louis County Prosecutor's Office. All 12 grand jurors are present as well as the court reporter, who is audio recording and taking down everything that is being said this morning.
I want to give a little pep talk to you as it were. I can only imagine the disruption that this causes in all of your lives and schedules, and I hope you know how appreciative that we are that we have the 12 of you who have agreed, even though maybe your arms were twisted a little bit, but agreed to, you know, devote the time and effort that this matter takes.
Don't think I'm understating it or overstating it to say how important this is. And I know you all, you know, since you're not a jury, there is no admonition that you not watch the news and anything like that, and I know that you can't really avoid seeing things about this in the news and, you know, not only here locally, but as well throughout the country. This is a very public matter and it is very important that we get this right.
And, as you know, Mr. McCulloch made a statement in the very beginning we were going to be as thorough as possible. And that means anybody who says that they saw part of this or knows something about it, is going to be able to be heard.
Even people that are reluctant to come in, we're going to do whatever we can to get them here because it is important that you have all the facts and information.
And I know sometimes it seems like it is very tedious because some of these eyewitnesses have made multiple statements and again, Mr. McCulloch has promised that there wasn't going to be anything that you didn't have the opportunity or weren't able to see or hear, and that means playing all of these statements for you.
And we do that because, obviously, there is times when if a witness makes multiple statements, sometimes over time their statements changes, sometimes dramatically, sometimes only slightly and insignificantly, but I think that those are things that you all have a right to consider when the witness testifies, if they've made previous statements that are different than what maybe they are telling you in the grand jury.
That happens in every case, every time a witness makes a prior statement, that statement can be brought up, as you know well, you said this previously, how come you are changing your story.
And, you know, neither Sheila and I are prepping these witnesses in the way we would if we were having a trial. We try cases, we have our witnesses come in and we talk to them about what is going to happen, we go over what their testimony is going to be, not in the sense like rehearsing, we want to know what they're going to say before they get up there and testify.
And that's just good lawyering. No one would ever expect me to put on a witness in a trial when I didn't know what they were going to say.
But in this case, you know, we don't want to have to, we don't want to in any way influence what these people are going to come forward and say to you. And so we don't do any prepping with any of these witnesses, other than to explain to them what is going to happen when they come in here, the process. So I don't know what they're going to say when they get here.
I mean, I have an idea because they've made prior statements, I assume they are going to say something like they said before, but the reality is, I don't know, and that's why it is important that we play for you those prior statements so that you know what they have said previously and can compare that to what they say today when they testify.