NASSAU COUNTY, FL – News4JAX spoke on Tuesday with one of the jurors in the murder trial that ended with Kimberly Kessler’s conviction for the death of her living room colleague Joleen Cummings.
The juror said it was not a difficult decision and after hearing critical evidence she knew Kessler was guilty.
Jurors have been released to speak publicly since Kessler’s trial verdict on December 9. The juror who spoke to News4JAX on Tuesday did so on condition of anonymity.
“She [Kessler] was very smart to begin with. She knew what she was doing, ”the juror said. “But now she wants to say she was crazy. She is not competent.
The juror pointed out many things that led her to this decision, but the main one was the DNA evidence found at the scene.
When asked if there had been any other key findings that led the juror to a guilty verdict, she replied, “When the lady of DNA came from Duval County and the samples from blood they drew. And when they said it was Joleen Cummings blood that was on his boots. The scissors. There were five different places on them. Joleen Cummings’ blood was there.
The juror continued, “Her clothes and when you walk into the living room where the receptionist’s large office was, her blood was on it. For me as a juror, that sealed the deal for me. I already knew she was guilty.
Another thing that she said swayed the jury was Kessler’s internet research.
“All the things, the research, the google searches that she looked for on how to dismember a body,” the juror said.
There was an interesting dynamic in this case as Kessler was not present in the courtroom following numerous explosions. The judge had him sequestered in another room for the trial and the juror said this made it difficult for some members of the jury.
“It was very intense and some jurors asked for her to be there because they wanted to see what her response was when the people of the state stood up and everything,” the juror said. “But I guess it was very difficult because we didn’t know what his emotion was at the time.”
The juror said Kessler seemed proficient in the way she cleaned up the crime scene at the Tangles barber shop.
“It took a methodical mind to replace the things that were broken and get all the cleaning supplies,” the juror said.
Kessler’s lawyers have cited numerous mistakes they say the judge made during the trial and have filed a motion for a new trial.
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