Metal Fragments Retrieved in Victim’s Skull Match Broken Knife in Murder Trial

By Evan Chu

Woodland – Metallic objects were found stuck in the victim’s skull, and the shattered pieces match the rest of the knife. That is what Senior Criminalist Ricci Cooksey testified in court.

During the jury trial for the Rohail Sarwar case, Ricci Cooksey testified with the aid of photos that, when he processed the metallic object, he had to pry it out because it was pressed flush on the skull. As soon as he took the object out, it shattered into three pieces, but he was still able to match them against the knife with the broken tip – and based on the lines and the marks on the knife and the fragments, he concluded that the fragments were part of the knife.

Latent Print Analyst Julie Smith also provided her viewpoint on a certain palm print retrieved from the crime scene. In her testimony, she stated that the palm print was a match with the victim’s palm. The print at the crime scene had a reddish substance on it, and she also said that the palm should have contacted the red substance before leaving the impression on the white background.

Then when it came to video evidence, the People called in Detective Joshua Amoruso, who processed the surveillance videos from the cameras around the massage parlor, to explain what the video tells the jury. He stated that the alleged knife used in the murder was not simple enough for everyone to understand the mechanism, and in the video from Bob’s Liquor, the liquor store that was a three-minute walk away from the massage parlor, the detective pointed out that Mr. Sarwar was seen purchasing the exact type of knife and trying to figuring out the way to use it minutes before heading toward the massage parlor. Det. Amoruso also pointed to the video evidence that a camera caught Mr. Sarwar on the screen at around 5:24 p.m., walking away from the massage parlor with some red substance on his hand.

After a lunch break, the People then called in Detective Mathew Jameson to give a testimony on his interview with Mr. Sarwar. He stated that, during his interview, Mr. Sarwar said that he was working on the day of the incident, but when Det. Jameson showed Mr. Sarwar a photo from the massage parlor that had an image of Mr. Sarwar, he admitted not being at work at the moment. Throughout the interview, Det. Jameson testified that Mr. Sarwar denied many of his questions but ultimately admitted to the ones that he was later shown evidence of.

Detective Jameson also recalled his time when he held a warrant to search Mr. Sarwar’s residence. He said that he found a pair of brownish pants and a white tank top in a hamper in his bathroom, and, based on his observation at the scene and the photos taken there, he saw red stains on the pants and drops of red, brownish stains on the tank top.

The trial will resume on July 29, Monday, at 8:30 a.m. with more witnesses coming up to testify.

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About The Author

The Vanguard Court Watch operates in Yolo, Sacramento and Sacramento Counties with a mission to monitor and report on court cases. Anyone interested in interning at the Courthouse or volunteering to monitor cases should contact the Vanguard at info(at)davisvanguard(dot)org - please email info(at)davisvanguard(dot)org if you find inaccuracies in this report.

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