On Sept. 21, 2009, Raymond and Ruth Gee and three of their
children, Justina Constant, Dillen Constant and Austin Gee, were
found dead in their home in Beason. A sixth victim, 3-year-old
Tabitha Gee, was injured but survived.
At the onset of the
investigation, Sheriff Steve Nichols and others involved in the
investigation of the deaths classified the slayings as violent acts
against the family members. They also noted that they believed the
victims knew their assailant or assailants.
This week, on Wednesday afternoon Fultz offered a scenario on
what occurred on the night in 2009.
Inside the courtroom of Judge Thomas Harris, Fultz said that
Christopher Harris admits he killed 14-year-old Dillen Constant, but
he did so in self-defense.
Fultz alleges that on the night of the incident, Harris entered
the Gee family home and encountered Dillen Constant (identified in
the courtroom as "D.C."), who had just murdered four of his family
members. Fultz said, acting in self-defense, Harris killed Constant.
Fultz has filed motions for subpoena duces tecum or a subpoena
for the production of evidence, requesting that Judge Harris
subpoena the medical, psychological, juvenile and school records of
Dillen Constant. He is asking for complete records for the three
years prior to the murders; from 2006 through 2009.
Fultz said he believes the records will show that Dillen Constant
had psychological issues, was prone to violence and had demonstrated
violence against his family prior to the murders.
Fultz had filed the motions for these subpoenas on Aug. 15 of
this year. The offices of the state's attorney and attorney general
then had until Sept. 14 to file their objections, which they did.
Fultz said that among the objections from the prosecuting
attorneys was a claim that Fultz's requests had lacked specificity
in what he was hoping to find in the records.
Fultz told Harris: "I believe we have laid out enough facts as to
what we are looking for. The evidence will show that Chris entered
the home while a crime was being committed against the family. We
believe the records will support the fact that D.C. had issues."
Fultz said these records would show that Dillen was prone to
violence and angry outbursts. Fultz also held that these records
would show that Constant had motive and the capability of committing
Fultz also told Harris that the defense was not seeking these
records for a "fishing expedition." He said in good faith he
believes the records will support the defense position.
For the prosecution, Illinois Assistant Attorney General Steven
Nate presented the state's case for denying Fultz's request. Nate
said Fultz believes he will find the evidence because he has been
told it is there by Christopher Harris. Nate said Fultz was hoping
the records would say what he wanted them to but that Fultz didn't
know that they would.
Nate continued that Fultz had not met the requirements or test
for the subpoena, saying he needed to show relevance, admissibility
and specificity; and he hadn't. He told Judge Harris that Fultz's
request was too broad and that in asking for three years' worth of
records, he was making a blanket request for records and not
specifying what in the records could be relevant.
Nate said that Fultz was basing his request on the fact that
Dillen was on medication, but he doesn't know what the condition was
or what the meds were, so he couldn't know that it would produce
Nate concluded that even if Fultz could get past those
objections, there was the final objection of privilege. Nate said
all the records Fultz was asking for were confidential records and
privileged information. Nate added that it is in the public interest
to closely guard confidentiality and privilege.
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Nate then said that if Judge Harris should decide that Fultz's
request was justified, he would then ask that the records be
reviewed first by Harris. Nate said he would want the judge to view
the records and make the decision to allow both the prosecution and
the defense to have the complete record. He also said he didn't want
Fultz cherry-picking specific items out of a file without keeping it
in proper context.
Nate ended by telling Harris the state would reserve the right to
contest the admissibility of the records.
Fultz argued in regard to specificity, saying the Sixth Amendment
didn't require that the defense lay out every detail of their case
for the prosecution to know
He told Harris that one week prior to the murders, Dillen had
broken into his parents' room to steal money. He also said he had
heard from a state trooper whose children had an encounter with
Dillen on the school bus. The prescription bottle found in the home
was a medication for ADHD, and Fultz told Harris the defense
believes Dillen had a juvenile record.
Judge Harris asked Fultz what he was asking for specifically, and
Fultz said he wanted to subpoena the doctor listed on the pill
bottle and the pharmacy.
Harris commented that this request was an example of the
vagueness of the request. He commented also on the subpoena
regarding juvenile records, saying the request didn't specify what
Fultz was looking for. Was it a subpoena for Logan County? Was it to
research abuse or neglect? Harris said the requests, as they were,
did not allow him to issue a subpoena for a specific reason.
Fultz countered by saying that he didn't feel like he should have
to list every single person he wants to talk to. He referred to it
as drawing a road map for the prosecution through his defense.
But Harris said that all the facts would have to come out
eventually, so why not now. He told Fultz: "I have to have names on
the subpoenas. Why have I not been given that?"
Fultz talked about not knowing for sure whom to subpoena, which
is why he wanted a broader range. He said, for example, he didn't
know what schools Dillen had attended.
He said he also didn't know details of alleged abuse and neglect.
He ended by telling Harris it had been a real struggle to find
anyone in the family who could tell him where to look for this
In the end, Harris denied the motions for the subpoenas but did
so "without prejudice," meaning Fultz can file another request,
which he plans to do.
Harris gave Fultz until Oct. 5 to file new motions and the state
until Oct. 12 to file an answer to the motions.
Fultz asked if he could have a new hearing date soon after Oct.
12, and Harris said he could make arrangements for that. Harris then
concluded the public hearing and told all the attorneys they would
meet in his chambers.
All the attorneys were in the judge's chambers for approximately
10 to 15 minutes. When they came out, they avoided answering
questions from the media but did say the next motion hearing will be
on Oct. 16 at 2 p.m.