SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) — The long awaited murder and arson trial of Anthony Baye is underway.
Shortly after 9:00 a.m. Thursday, Judge Constance Sweeney offered some guidance and instructions to the jury, which was chosen after nearly three days of jury selection.
Baye is accused of setting more than a dozen fires the night of December 27, 2009. One of those fires led to the deaths of Paul Yeskie Sr. and his son, Paul Jr.
After the clerk read each of the 36 charges facing Baye, including two for murder, special prosecutor Brett Vottero presented his opening statements to the jury.
Vottero told the jurors that once all the evidence is presented, they will be “satisfied beyond a reasonable doubt” about what happened that night,”There won’t be some Perry Mason moment or some dramatic piece of CSI evidence but when you have heard all of the evidence in this case and you take your life experiences, your common sense, and God-given wisdom, you start to apply them to the evidence, you will see the evidence you hear will establish the guilt of Anthony Baye on all of the indictments beyond any reasonable doubt,” says Vottero.
Vottero added that Baye gave police “lie after lie” and provided “different stories” about what he did after leaving a party the night of the fire.
Defense Attorney David Hoose then told jurors that Baye is being “wrongfully accused” and that he is “blameless” in setting the fires,” I will urge you to find Tony Baye not guilty of arson and murder and guilty of what he has never denied which is that he lied and misled police,” says Hoose.
Hoose added that the prosecution has no evidence to show that proves Baye set the fires on December 27, 2009. He says that night, Baye was at a party, and probably had a little too much to drink.
Baye, according to Hoose, left the party and drove around the neighborhood, instead of going home. He notes that once the smoke had cleared, “police realized they had nothing.”
“Fifteen fires, two deaths, and they have nothing,” Hoose explained in court.