by Steven Ertelt
February 5, 2008
Canton, OH (LifeNews.com) — The trial of Canton police officer Bobby Cutts continued on Tuesday as the court heard from a witness related to the case. Cutts has said he didn’t kill his partner Jesse Davis and her nine-month-old unborn child Chloe, but prosecutors have charged him with aggravated murder and other charges.
The case is one of the latest to draw the nation’s attention to violence against pregnant women and how they are frequently targeted because of their pregnancy.
Cutts has been charged both for the murder of Jesse Davis and under an Ohio unborn victims law that allows a second charge when an unborn child is killed.
The law is similar to the one used to prosecute Scott Peterson in the deaths of his wife and unborn son Laci and Conner.
The jury heard testimony Tuesday from Myisha Ferrell, a friend of Cutts and a former police officer, who said he picked her up from her home one day and mentioned Davis’ body was in the back of his truck.
According to an AP report, Ferrell told jurors that she went with Cutts to a park where he dumped the body and she said he coached her on what to tell officials if questioned.
Two other women also talked with the court, including Cutts’ girlfriend at the time, Stephanie Hawthorne, who said she was pregnant with his child and had an abortion on the same day Davis was reported missing.
The police officer is the father of Davis’ two year-old son, who was found home alone after Cutts allegedly killed Jessie and Chloe. According to Jessie’s family, he is the father of Chloe as well.
When investigating the 26 year-old Davis’ home, authorities found overturned furniture and bleached spilled on the floor, likely to cover up the blood loss resulting from the attack. Officials eventually found Davis’ body Saturday in Cuyahoga Valley National Park, with the body of her dead daughter Chloe still inside her.
Ohio’s law says that, at any stage of a pregnancy, if an "unborn member of the species homo sapiens, who is or was carried in the womb of another" is killed, it is aggravated murder, murder, voluntary manslaughter, involuntary manslaughter, negligent homicide, aggravated vehicular homicide, and vehicular homicide, depending on the circumstances.
The Ohio law was adopted in 1998 and similar laws are in effect in 36 states with 26 of them that protect mothers and their babies throughout pregnancy.