Jurors in Isom triple homicide case hear how firearms evidence was collected
By Ruth Ann Krause Post-Tribune correspondent January 17, 2013 6:50PM
Kevin Isom. | Provided Photo~Sun-Times Media
Updated: February 19, 2013 3:08PM
Lake Superior Court jurors spent a third day hearing from a technician who collected evidence at the scene of a triple homicide in Gary.
Testimony by Lake County police Detective Samuel Perez Sr. focused on about 75 exhibits containing firearms evidence collected at a first-floor apartment where Cassandra Isom, 40, and her two children, Michael Moore, 16, and Ci’Andria Cole, 13, were killed.
Kevin Charles Isom, 47, Cassandra’s husband of 12 years, faces the death penalty, life without parole or a term of years if convicted of three counts of murder in the case. He also is charged with three counts of attempted murder involving Gary police officers who were called to the family’s apartment at 5708 Hemlock Ave. in the Miller section in response to gunfire.
Perez, who worked with Detective James Tomko in processing evidence, said he photographed, took measurements and collected items as Tomko took notes. The items included three weapons, numerous spent shell casings and shotgun shells, spent bullets, live ammunition and lead fragments.
After identifying each item, including a .40-caliber pistol, a .357-Magnum revolver and a 12-gauge shotgun with a pistol grip, Perez then was questioned about each exhibit a second time. The second round of questions posed by deputy prosecutor Michelle Jatkiewicz focused on chain of custody, such as when Perez turned over items in sealed plastic bags to a member of the Lake County police firearms division for examination.
Perez said he tested each item for fingerprints but found none.
Defense attorney Herbert Shaps questioned whether Gary police Detective James Bond was present when Perez collected the weapons, all of which were loaded. Perez said he didn’t recall.
Shaps also asked Perez how long Bond and Gary police Detective Lorenzo Davis were inside the apartment before he arrived. Perez said he didn’t know.