Defense Rests In Michael Bever Murder Trial
TULSA COUNTY, Oklahoma - After 17 days, both sides rested in the murder trial of Michael Bever.
Wednesday, the jury could decide if he is guilty of murdering five members of his family and trying to murder a sister.
Bever's defense team wrapped up their case Tuesday without calling Michael to the stand.
The judge had him stand, raise his right hand and promise to tell the truth, then asked him what he had decided about testifying in his trial. Bever said he decided not to testify – a fact the judge will instruct the jury they're not allowed to hold against him.
In fact, they're not even allowed to consider it during their deliberations.
Michael Bever's defense team called two witnesses, Michael's brother, Robert, and the lead detective on the case.
Robert Bever told the jury he never saw his brother hold a knife or stab anyone the night five Bever family members were murdered in July 2015.
However, he admitted he told police that night that Michael was heavily involved in the planning of the murders, had a knife and stabbed the two youngest victims.
But, on the witness stand, Robert told the jury he had lied to police.
Robert Bever already pleaded guilty to murder and is serving life without parole.
The defense also asked the investigator about a missing computer hard drive. She testified the hard drive was the responsibility of another detective to re-inventory the evidence once they got it back from the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation.
She said that detective has resigned from the Broken Arrow Police Department.
The investigator also said nothing was on the hard drive they could recover because it couldn’t be initialized.
When asked why she didn’t request DNA testing on the blood on the alarm panel in the Bever home, the investigator said it was because Michael Bever and his brother, Robert, both told police Michael was the one who shut off the alarm.
The defense also asked why she didn’t request more DNA and fingerprint testing from OSBI; she said it was because they had two confessions and they weren’t trying to discover who committed the crime.
The investigator said the OSBI has a tight budget and cases where suspects are unknown take higher priority. She also said she didn’t believe additional testing would have made a difference in the case.
The investigator was also asked about a journal from the case that showed up at an auction house. She wasn’t allowed, however, to answer if pages were missing when it was recovered.
Wednesday, the jurors will hear jury instructions then listen to closing arguments from both sides before going to deliberations.
If convicted, he could face life, or life without parole.