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Testimony at Standstill in Cal Harris Trial

By Beth Rousseau.
Testimony was at a standstill today in the trial of Cal Harris while attorneys waited for Judge George Bartlett's ruling on critical defense evidence. Harris is the Town of Spencer man charged with second degree murder for the death of his wife Michele who disappeared in September 2001.

Jurors did not step foot inside the courtroom today except to be dismissed. Judge Bartlett spent the day hearing legal arguments and considering what testimony to allow regarding Stacy Stewart.

Cal's defense team argues Michele Was sleeping with Stewart at the time of her disappearance and says he's the man who is actually responsible for her death.

Earlier this week Kevin Tubbs told jurors that he saw a woman he believes was Michele Harris at the end of the Harris driveway along with a dark haired man at approximately 6 AM on the morning of September 12th 2001. This is after the time prosecutors allege she had been killed.

Outside the presence of the jurors Tubbs has testified that he identified the man with Michele at the end of the driveway as Stacy Stewart. Prosecutors argue that Tubbs should not be allowed to testify to this in front of jurors while the defense says it adds to Tubbs credibility.

If you remember back in March judge Bartlett ruled that he would not allow evidence on third party culpability which excludes testimony implicating Stacy Stewart.

During today's considerations Judge Bartlett heard testimony from Cal's private investigator David Beers outside the presence of jurors.

Beers says that when presented with photos Tubbs immediately identified Stewart as the man he saw in the driveway that morning.

During cross examination district attorney Kirk Martin argued that the way beers presented photos to Tubbs was unduly suggestive because of the 3 photos presented only one matched Stewart's description.

It wasn't until the end of the day that judge Bartlett made his rulings. Tubbs will be allowed to identify Stacy Stewart. Julie Brinkman the woman who dated Stewart earlier this year will only take the stand to identify a photo of Stewart ruling the rest of her testimony is hearsay.

Bartlett warned the defense that these rulings do not open the door to testimony on third party culpability. Jurors are expected to hear from both witnesses tomorrow when court reconvenes at 10 am.