Peterson Sentenced To Death
Scott Peterson will
take up residence on death row at San Quentin State Prison
A judge in California has sentenced Scott Peterson to death by lethal injection, following a jury's reccommendation. The judge reportedly called the deaths "cruel, uncaring, heartless, and callous." San Mateo Superior Court Judge Alfred Delucchi denied an automatic motion to mitigate Peterson's sentence and a motion by defense attorney Mark Geragos seeking a new trial.
After deliberating for nine days, a jury in Redwood City, California found Scott Peterson guilty of first-degree murder in the death of his pregnant wife, and second-degree murder in the death of their unborn son, Conner in November of 2004. Jurors unanimously agreed that Peterson planned the murder of his wife Laci, who was eight months pregnant with their first child.
Officials say that Peterson will be transferred from the San Mateo County Jail to California's San Quentin State Prison, where he will become the 641st person on the state's death row.
A Look Back: Scott Peterson on AMW
Posters were distributed all over Modesto in hopes of developing clues leading to the recovery of Laci
Scott Peterson was interviewed by AMW in January 2003, almost a month after his pregnant wife Laci went missing.
He categorically denied any involvment in Laci's dissapearence. He also refused to answer questions into his suspicious behavior around the time she vanished. Peterson claimed the interview wasn't the right forum to do so.
Answering those questions, he said, would detract attention, time and effort away from searching for Laci. He said the controversey was the work of tabloids and was counterproductive to everyone's goal of finding Laci. He used his time on national TV to plead for the public to aid in her safe return.
Scott Peterson was found guilty for the murder of his wife, Laci and their unborn son, Conner
AMW followed the Laci Peterson case from the day she went missing in late 2002 to the day the bodies of her and her unborn son washed ashore in Northern California. It was a gripping tale that caught the attention of the entire nation.
John Walsh went on location in Modesto, Calif., during those early months of 2003. AMW crews were at press conferences with authorities and family members, conducted exclusive interviews and aired constant updates in the hopes that the case would end happily.
Police and AMW knew the case could turn on the smallest clue or the right tip. Police and hundreds of volunteers launched extensive and far-reaching searches but to no avail. Family members held out hope for nearly five months.
But when Laci and the baby were found in April 2003, it was a sad conclusion to a story in which suspicion constantly swirled around Laci's husband. Soon after, he was charged with her murder.
Investigators wanted to know why Scott drove 90 miles to go fishing on Christmas Eve 2002 and left his eight month pregnant wife home alone. AMW talked to local fishermen in the area who said the weather was dreary and rough that day. They wouldn't have taken Peterson's small boat out on the bay, why did he?
"No one goes fishing on Christmas Eve, in that kind of weather, in that kind of boat," said one local fisherman.
AMW was there when a young woman named Amber Frey revealed that she'd had an affair with Peterson. She says he told her he wasn't married.
AMW interviewed Laci's family soon after that shocking discovery. To break the disturbing news to the family, police showed them four pictures of Peterson with another woman. On that day, the family closed the Laci Peterson command center and demanded Peterson tell police everything he knew. He'd lied to them before, they thought he was lying still.
Peterson maintained his innocence as his very public trial got underway, but the jury didn't believe his story.