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Archive for Tuesday, October 15, 2002

Jury views video of Robinson, alleged victim

October 15, 2002

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— Jurors saw first hand Monday the lurid sexual activities they heard so much about in the first week of the John E. Robinson Sr. trial. For a few, it was more than they could bear to watch.

For nearly 40 minutes, prosecutors played a video of Robinson engaged in a sadomasochistic sex session with Suzette Trouten, a woman he's charged with killing.

Several jurors covered their eyes at least briefly from the graphic sexual content of the video, which was filmed in a hotel room. In the video, Trouten performs acts on herself and Robinson and professes her allegiance to Robinson, who was her sex master.

The video was a graphic start to the second week of the case against Robinson, 58, of Olathe, who is charged with capital murder in the deaths of Trouten, 27, of Newport, Mich., and Izabela Lewicka, 21, a former Purdue University student. He also is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Lisa Stasi, 19, who disappeared in 1985 but whose body has never been found. He also faces three other murder charges in Missouri.

Lenexa police detective Dawn Layman, who was part of a task force investigating Trouten's death, testified about items found at a storage locker Robinson had rented.

She said the search yielded numerous items owned by Trouten and Lewicka, including their drivers' licenses, Social Security cards, sex toys and a six-page "sex slave" contract with 115 rules.

Also recovered were pre-addressed and signed cards that the state says Robinson intended to send to the women's family members after the women disappeared.

Robinson's wife, Nancy, testified that she was aware of her husband's sexual lifestyle and affairs but still loved him.

In Monday afternoon testimony, Rita Grant, who lives next to Robinson's property in Linn County, testified that she had an unpleasant first meeting with Robinson in fall 1999.

Grant said one of her 16 cats ran into Robinson's barn, which is located close to the Grant's home. She said she was startled when she discovered that there was someone in the barn.

That someone was Robinson, Grant said, and he was digging holes in the barn's dirt floor. However, she said, the holes were only about "knee deep," because Robinson was hitting rock that was less than 2 feet beneath the soil.

Grant said Robinson was angry and used numerous expletives in saying that he did not want her or her animals near the barn. Grant said she retrieved her cat but could hear Robinson breathing heavy after his tirade just behind her as she headed to her property.

Deputy Dan Rundle of the Johnson County Crime Lab described how investigators looked for traces of blood and other tissue at the Lenexa hotel where Trouten stayed and at the Linn County property where barrels containing two bodies were found.

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