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Judge denies Dippolito bond pending appeal

Posted at 11:29 AM, Aug 10, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-16 14:25:11-04

UPDATE: Judge denies Dippolito bond pending appeal.



Surprising developments in the Dalia Dippolito case came out at Thursday's appellate bond hearing.

Under questioning, Dalia Dippolito's mother Randa Mohammed revealed the identity of the father of her daughter's child. Prosecutors were focusing on a jailhouse call Dippolito made to a man referred to as 'James.'

"The 'James' that communicates with her on the jail calls all the time, tell the judge his real name," prosecutor Craig Williams prodded Mohammed.

"It's Rob," said Mohammed reluctantly after looking at Dippolito and her lawyer.

"Robert what?" asked Williams.

Dippolito's attorney Andrew Greenlee objected to the question, saying that Dippolito did not want her baby's father's name revealed.

"We didn't ask that question, we just asked about the person on the phone," said judge Glenn Kelley.

Inadvertently, Greenlee revealed Robert Davis is the father of the baby. Further questioning by prosecutor Williams revealed Davis has lived with Dippolito's family for one year.

"As you know, I objected to that. I didn't feel like that had any place in the proceedings," said Greenlee.

But prosecutors believe Davis has an impact on Dippolito. They questioned her mother on whether he has a criminal history. Randa Mohammed said she didn't know. Jail call logs show he's talked to Dippolito on the phone every day since she went to jail.

Davis's name does not appear on Dippolito's jail visitation logs. Her mother has visited her every Sunday since Dippolito was convicted of hiring a hit man to kill her husband. Her other visitors have been two female friends and a male friend.

Dippolito's phone conversation with Robert about an inmate's jail escape using a drone is at the center of the state's argument that Dalia is a flight risk and that she is a threat just sitting at home where she can manipulate others to carry out her deeds.

"I think it's preposterous to suggest that when she's out on house arrest for 8 years and she had every opportunity to flee the jurisdiction of the court, that she would now attempt to flee prison by means of a drone bringing in wire cutters, the whole thing is absurd," said Greenlee.

Dippolito's attorneys believe they have grounds to overturn the verdict and asked the judge at the bond hearing to look at Dippolito's track-record as an inmate before making a decision.

The judge said he will make a decision soon on whether she can be on house arrest. Dippolito's lawyers are arguing that testimony alleging that she tried to poison her husband should not have been allowed to be heard by the jurors. They also argue that one juror was sleeping during part of key testimony in Dippolito's June trial. The judge has previously ruled against the defense team on these three issues.