Thursday, September 29, 2011

She was “physically helpless”

In testimony Thursday, state associate medical examiner Dr. Susan Williams said Jennifer Hawke-Petit’s body was “burned beyond recognition” and so she was identified through dental records.

Additionally, Williams, said portions of fabric were around Hawke-Petit's neck and ligatures were tied in knots around her ankles.

Photos of the blackened ligatures, shown here, and of Hawke-Petit’s damaged larynx during the autopsy, were shown on the courtroom screen.
Williams said she found fractures of Hawke-Petit’s thyroid cartilage on both sides. The diagram below also was used in court. Williams noted evidence of compression of the artery and jugular vein.

 Senior Assistant State’s Attorney Gary Nicholson asked how long it took Hawke-Petit to die.
“It depends on how much of a struggle there is,” Williams replied, “and whether there’s constant compression.”
She agreed with Nicholson’s description of Hawke-Petit as being “physically helpless.”
Williams also said that because there was no soot in her air passages or lungs and no carbon monoxide in her blood, Hawke-Petit died before the fire. The photo above shows the Petit's burned family room after the fire was out.
Editor's note: The text in this post is by Register Reporter Randall Beach

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3 Comments:

Anonymous BeccaL said...

This is horrible, how could they be so heartless. I hope justice will prevail for the Petit family.

October 7, 2011 at 10:36 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree it is an absolutley horrible crime. Although what sticks out for me and with many other crimes like this is the people who commited them and what brought them to do it. Knowing the issues surrounding komisarjevsky from childhood throughout his young adult years and the physical/mental abuse he endured-he needed help/therapy. Now please dont take this the wrong way- he committed a crime and deserves to pay the penalty-whatever the jury decides-but it would be nice to see these people get help they deserve before such a crime is committed.

October 13, 2011 at 1:52 AM 
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