|"A BOY NAMED JACQUELINE"
October 4, 2004
|In the weeks before he was arrested, Scott Peterson
bought a car using his mother's name.
|Prosecutors preparing to wrap up their case against Peterson are again trying to
portray the former fertilizer salesman as a liar who might have been preparing to flee.
Michael Griffin took the stand Monday to testify about how he sold Peterson
a used Mercedes on April 12, 2003, shortly before Peterson's arrest.
Griffin said that when Peterson bought his red Mercedes in San Diego,
paying the $3,600 price tag in $100 bills, he signed the bill of sale in his
mother's name -- Jacqueline Peterson - and used her driver's license number.
"When I saw the name Jacqueline, I said, 'Are you buying this for your wife?'
And he said, 'No, that's my name,'" Griffin testified. "I said, 'Are you French?'
He said, 'No, it's kind of a 'Boy Named Sue' type of thing ... I go by Jack.'"
When Peterson was arrested April 18, 2003 in the San Diego area in the Mercedes,
police found camping gear, a water purifier and a backpack in the trunk. In the
side door compartment investigators found a knife. Until Monday they presumed
that it was Peterson's. But under cross-examination, Griffin said that it was his
knife and that he had forgotten to remove it when he sold the car to Peterson.
Distaso and Harris have suggested that Peterson had purchased the car and
packed it with supplies to head south of the Mexico border if he needed to make a
hasty getaway. They say he changed his appearance so he wouldn't be recognizable.
But Geragos laughed at the notion, asking what kind of person who wants
to go unnoticed buys a red Mercedes. He and his partner, Pat Harris,
tried to show through cross-examination that Peterson was trying to evade
not the police, but the media, which had been relentlessly hounding him.
Harris suggested that between the loss of his wife and the round-the-clock harassment,
Peterson's fertilizer business was failing and he was on the verge of having a breakdown.
Before purchasing the Mercedes, Scott tried to purchase a Saab convertible.
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