Briana Waters Trial: Notes from 2/27 PM

Notes from 2/27 of Waters Trial: Briana Waters testimony
Court reconvenes after lunch break. Briana Waters takes stand. Defense Atty. Bloom examines.
Disclaimer: Since this testimony was recorded through handwritten notes and the actual spoken testimony went faster than some notes could be transcribed, some questions and answers may appear incomplete. However, the bulk of the testimony appears as it was said in court.
Defense= D
Briana Waters = B

D- I forgot to ask about the facilities at The Evergreen State College... are there soundproof recording studios there?
B- Yes. I'm assuming they are soundproof; I've recorded in them before.
D- Did you live with a cousin, Robert Corina in summer of 2000?
B- Yes
D- Did you babysit during this period?
B- Yes
D- Re: testimony of rental car, do you have memory of rental car?
B- Yes, he asked me if I would move some of my stuff.
D- Did you give Corina money before you left for California?
B- Yes I wanted to contribute $100 for bills and other things.
D- Remembering Watch Mountain, did you have any dealing with law during that campaign?
B- Yes, the Forest Service- we obtained an extended stay permit to stay beyond two weeks.
D- Did they renew it?
B- Yes, they renewed it as many times was we needed it to.
D- Did people of Randle come out at any time to treesit? Please explain to a jury what a tree sit is.
B- (Explains tree sit)
D- Purpose of tree sit?
B-To stop logging of a particular area, and to hopefully obtain media attention.
D- Mark Exhibit for Identification, please. A 2114 Permits from Watch Mountain. What is this?
B- A flier for a picnic, another permit, same photos from tree sit, a picture of me on traverse lines, a woman from Randle climbing a tree.
D- (Shows photos) All together how much time did you spend with Watch Mountain campaign?
B- I guess it was a little under a year.
D- You documented it?
B- Yes
D- Result of campaign?
B- It was mostly successful, Watch Mountain was taken out of the land exchange.
D- You heard Mrs. Troxels testimony of bringing people together, can you tell the jury about this?
B- It was one of the most inspiring experiences of my life. We bridged gaps between environmentalists and loggers. For me it was a great example of the way things should be done.
D- Did it make you want to commit arson?
B- No- it had the opposite effect.
D- Remember meeting Bill Rodgers?
B- On campus, maybe at an early meeting for Watch or at the Steel workers Union action.
D- Do you remember what the Steel workers action was?
B- To block shipment of ore to promote the publicity of the treatment of the Steel workers and the cutting of trees was done by one corporation: Maxaam.
D- When?
B- Late 1998, early 1999
D- Did you know Bill Rodgers?
B -Yes, I knew him as Avalon. He seemed nice, he later seemed quite needy.
D- Did he ask you to do him a favor?
B- Yes, he asked me to get him a cell phone since his credit was bad. He paid his bills to me in advance.
D- Did you know this had anything to do with criminal activity?
D- Did you commit any crime with Avalon?
B- No
D- There was a question brought up about your website. Can you explain your financial condition.
B- We get by. I teach violin to children and adults. I sometimes perform traditional music. John is a carpenter. He tries his best and we cover the bills.
D- But not much beyond that? Since the time Agent Halla has come to you has your situation gotten better or worse?
B -Worse
D- Were you making a living off of financial contributions?
B- No. We had many different fundraisers, loans from the family.
D- This is not a money making scheme?
B- No, unfortunately it's not.
D- Do you recall why you answered the way you did about the mink release and arson in the NY Times article?
B- I've never agreed with arson... I think it is alienating and not effective.
D- Do you remember the highlighted articles Ms. Kolar gave to you?
B- I thought it was unfair and wrong to show the articles and attribute them (the quotes that prosecutor Bartlett read in court) to me. I strongly disagree with them.
D- Do you want to burn down Disneyland or the Statue of Liberty?
B- (laughing) No.
D- Did you go to the hospital before you moved?
B- Yes I was really sick. It was a gastrointestinal issue. Justin took me to the ER
D- Did Rob Corina become aware you went to the hospital?
B- Yes
D- This was 7-8m months after May of 2001.
B- Yes
D- Have you been in the Bay area since your move?
B- Yes
D- Did you remember meeting Jen Kolar?
B- Yes... (through social circles)
D- Did you commit arson with her?
B- No
D- Did she give you a gift?
B- Yes, a necklace from Hawai'i. She gave it to me at a Thai restaurant at dinner.
D- Did she say anything to you?
B- Yes, she told me she felt a connection with me that she's never felt with any other woman. She felt romantic towards me. I told her I didn't feel the same way. She was hurt and said she thought I would have a different response. She was hurt and surprised, like she was used to getting what she wanted.
D- Did you remember writing a check for Justin?
B- Yes, he was on the east coast.
D- Do you remember a transaction at Ralph's Thriftway in May of 2001?
B- No
D- Do you remember how it came about?
B- Mr. Fox showed it to me a few weeks ago.
D- Is Ralph's near Avalon's house on the east side of Olympia?
B -Yes
D- Did you have friends at this part of town?
B- Yes, many friends... I had band practice there and I knew Anthea and Lawson.
D- Lawson the Assistant Attorney General?
B- Yes
D- Did you hear that a receipt proved you were at Olympia at the time they are saying you did the UW arson? How did you react to this?
B- Yes, I cried. It gave me a lot of hope.
D- Before Agent Halla came to see you, describe your life.
B- I just had a daughter in January of 2005. I was raising her and teaching violin.
D- Did that change? Has your life been different?
B-Yes-it's stressful. I don't want to be separated from my child (becomes emotional)
Defense Rests

Prosecutor Bartlett=P
Cross Examination
P- You indicated several weeks ago you received these records (the Ralph's Thriftway receipt). But you didn't share these with us did you?
B- No I don't share anything with you. My lawyers do.
P- Let's highlight Exhibit 738, transaction receipts. You say you shop here a lot. There are your bank records from 2001. Go until you find any other transactions from Ralph's Thriftway.
B-(Flips through transactions) there are none.
P- During your direct exam, Mr. Bloom Asked many questions related to NY Times articles. Was this a big deal for you?
B- No I don't remember it happening.
P- (Pulls article up on screen). Ms. Waters, looking at quote, wouldn't you agree that you were referring to arsons?
B- No I think there could be people who could have gotten hurt in a mink farm release.
P- I want to ask you about Watch Mountain, actions directed against Plum Creek in Seattle.
P- In October of 1999. Individual left leaflets warning employees about further actions could occur. Weren't individuals putting bike locks around their necks... ?
B- Yes
P- Didn't you go there to harass employees?
B- I think that's a fair description.
P- Were people arrested? Were employees yelled at and confronted?
B- Yes
P- During this confrontation, people said that whatever it takes, we will stop this.
B- Yes
P- What does this mean?
B- That we would pursue any avenue we could to get the timber sale dropped.
P- This wasn't the only time you've had and opinion of how serious UW arson was? Exhibit1101, Recognize this written as your attorneys and you.
B- Yes
P-(Reads description of UW arson from pleading document)- where it was described as an act which did not hurt anyone. A misguided attempt...
B- Yes but my lawyers wrote this not me. These are not my words.
P- Isn't it that you change your position for the jury?
B- No this is not true.
P- Do you remember the testimony of Ms. Linn?
B- Yes
P- Please look at the website. One of the things they ask for is a support in the court room. They are organized, no?
B- I don't know
P Regarding your website, do you know that your website give instructions for how to dress and act in court, asking people to wear "court camouflage"?
B- Maybe, I don't know... haven't seen website in a while
D- What is a primary source of income on a month to month basis?
B- My partner's carpentry work.
P- Let me ask you about Bill Rodgers, were you met?
B- We met before Watch Mountain Campaign
P- Close friends? Part of Watch?
B- Just friends, remember seeing him at meetings, but not at treesit.
P- Sometime in 2000 Bill Rodgers asked you to get him a cell phone. You were poor at the time, didn't even have a cell phone yourself.
B- Yes for whatever reason, he asked me.
P- (Pulls up bill for $91) So in addition to you paying the bill, he uses this phone to call you a fair amount. (Pulls up phone records from Ocean's house, Teresa Howell's house). Isn't it fair to say that most of these calls are for you?
B- No- some were for me, but I wasn't the only person living at those houses.
P- Did you have occasion to talk to him about his environmental views?
B- Mostly we talked about his loneliness... I was mainly a support person for him (his depression).
P- Didn't you know he was obsessed with direct environmental action?
B- that wasn't what we mainly talked about.
P- In addition to Mr. Rodgers you knew Justin Solondz, your boyfriend. There was a time he changed his appearance. (Shows pictures of Justin S. with long hair and goatee, then later with short hair and full beard).
B- Correct.
P- You knew he was a fugitive, no?
Objection- Defense: He was not a fugitive b/c he had not been arrested. Overruled
P- you knew Nathan Block? Ms Savoie? Mr Dibee, Ms, Zacher, Mr. Rodgers.. Shows pictures. Joe Dibee called your house twice, right before and after the Susanville action.
B- I don't know
P- Ms. Kolar was your friend.
B- Yes
P- In fact you invited her to a screening of "Watch" in Seattle?
B- Possibly, I don't remember
P- Please give Ms Waters Exhibit #___: the folder given to Jen Kolar with the articles in it. You provided a number of articles to Ms. Kolar?
B- Apparently, I don't remember giving her these articles. We mainly talked about issues of women in activism, vegetarianism, so I would think that the articles I gave her would be about that, not these articles here.
P- Ms. Kolar at some point became attracted to you.
B- Yes
P- Could you point out all of the phone calls and emails that Ms. Kolar sent to you during this time she was supposedly obsessed with you.
B- I didn't say obsessed. I just said attracted.
P-Are you saying that Ms. Kolar was so full of venom after you turned her down that she is framing you? You were saying that Lacey Phillabaum was testifying against you b/c you called her an unprincipled slut?
B- I don't know why she's doing this. I'm not inside their heads.
P- Mr. Corina was your cousin. You were close, you stayed with them. There was never a huge blow up where he indicated hatred of you?
B On Feb 21st Lacey Phillabaum indicated you were the lookout and you had gotten a rental car . Mr Corina has car records for you the same weekend of the arson.
B- That's what the records indicate.
P- Do you expect the jury to believe that this is a coincidence?

Afternoon Break
P- Ms. Waters I want to go back to exhibit___: the call that Mr. Rodgers made to Ocean's house. Look at exhibit ___: calls from Bill Rodgers phone at various locations. Do you see the call made to Conger St. June 3rd one week after the arson... and there are a number of calls over the summer up to September 13th, at which point you moved out.
B- There were a number of people living there, but sure.
P- Can you look through the manila envelope and see if any of the articles you sent or gave to Ms. Kolar? Is it your testimony you didn't give her these things?
B- It is possible that Justin gave me some articles to give to her. I remember talking to her about different things so I don't remember.
P- So she switched the documents?
Objection Defense: Speculation- overruled.
B-I don't know, I can't say.
P- Why did Jen Kolar name you?
B- I don't know, I'm not inside her head. She was probably very scared of life in prison.
P- So they're lying? And the rental records are a coincidence? And these are not your articles? And you never took the wireless headset?
B- I don't know, it may be a coincidence. These are not my articles and I may have taken t he headset when I went to the hospital in January of 2002.

Question from defense
D- Did you always use your charge card when you shopped?
B- Sometimes, but I tried not to, because sometimes they charge you when you use your card, so I tried to use cash.
D- Were you upset when you found out Mr. Rodgers died?
B- Yes, it was sad. He was very depressed... he was obsessed with not having a girlfriend.
D- And Anthea and Lawson lived near Ralph's.
B- Yes, and other band members.
D- I noticed when Mr. Bartlett asked you about your records he never asked you if you were at Ralph's Thriftway that night.
B- No he didn't
D- I offer a segment of "Watch".
Judge denied- "same ruling"
D- Judge- he (Prosecutor Bartlett) opened the door...
Judge- Same ruling.
D- I offer the rest of the paragraph from the pleading document that the Prosecution read from.
Prosecution objects-jury steps out.
Judge grants only a one sentence completion.
D- Mr Bartlett reads a pleading that omitted words. Let me read the rest of that sentence. "35 years to life for an act that did not hurt anyone... is outside of the pale." Did you participate or preapprove any wording of this document?
B- No I didn't... any time I spend outside of court I am with my daughter... my lawyers write all of that.
D- Do you feel this arson is a minor petty crime?
B- No I feel that it is unspeakably terrible for those affected.
D- Ms. Kolar was involved in four arsons...
Prosecution objects
D- There was a statement made about orchestrating the people in the stands, are you doing this?
P- No I'd be amazed if I had the time
D- Mr. Bartlett showed 2 exhibits of 55 phone calls from the year 2001 from Mr. Rogers. About one a week, does this seem like a lot from a lonely guy?
B- No
D- of the thousands of documents seized in Mr Rodgers home, there was only one mention of you and that was in the scope of the Watch Mountain video..
B- Yes
D- Mrs. Solondz, Justin's mother was here. Were you surprised to see her?
B- Somewhat b/c she lives on the east coast. I think New Jersey.
D- Did Justin tell you he was leaving the country?
B- I believe so October of 2005.
D- Do you recall the phone calls from Mr. Dibee for one minute each?
B- No
D- About these articles, you heard testimony that on the 80 (pages of?) articles that Ms. Kolar said were from you, your finger prints didn't appear on any articles.
B- Yes I heard this
D- So you don't know if Ms. Kolar put inflammatory articles...
Objection- Prosecution
D- Exhibit___-- email from Jen Kolar to a friend on how she was interested in a particular woman. I'm reading from toward the bottom. " So I'm not going out with anyone... proud of me? Joe is becoming a better ex-boyfriend than a boyfriend... I became obsessed with this particular woman, Jessica... I'm planning on going to see her, if I have the guts to ask her out." Did you see this?
D- After Agent Halla came to your home in Berkley did you call friends and family?
B- Yes I told them they might be contacted, especially if I lived with them
D- Did you ask Mr. Corina to lie? Deny knowing you?
B- No I didn't do any of that. I told them to tell the truth. I'm innocent.
B -Lacey Phillabaum said you were going to rent a car for you- an older woman or or an aunt. Is Cara Larson older?
B- No, she's younger than me, I think.
D- Mr. Bartlett said that Lacey Phillabaum and Jen Kolar came in independently, did there come a time during the testimony that Agent Halla had given factual information to Cara Larson at her work when he said the car she rented may have been used in an arson?
D -There was a question of Ralph's Thriftway. Did Bill Rodgers live near there?
B -Yes
D -Why did the prosecution not ask you about a phone call on 5/20/01 at 7:25 to Bill Rodgers?
Prosecution- Objection
D- Why would you lie?
Prosecution Objects
D- On that weekend was your stuff moved to Ocean's from Kara's?
B- Rob,my cousin, asked me to move stuff on 5/20 weekend.
Prosecution- Objection
D- Were there boxes put in your garage?
B- Yes
D- Do you recall Justin moving boxes into your garage that weekend?
B- I have a vague memory- it wasn't a big event or anything.
D- Justin's car was not available that weekend so Justin used the rental car to move your boxes.
Prosecution- Objection.
Defense- no further questions.

Prosecution reexamines
P- Phone call to Mr. Corina to tell the truth. On Feb 26 Agent Halla came to your house. How long was he there for? 15-20 minutes?
B- About fifteen minutes, I'd say that's right.
P-Was it a couple of weeks that you went to another lawyer then retained Mr. Bloom. After retaining Mr. Bloom did you call and tell Mr. Corina (the cousin) that you were innocent?
B- Yes, as I recall

Defense reexamines
D- Did you tell the truth?
B- Yes I did.
D- Any doubt?
B- No
Defense Rests

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