Peterson’s lawyers say he should get a whole new trial because a certain juror allegedly lied about having previously been a victim of domestic violence, and they grilled her on the stand in San Mateo County all day Friday.
As long-ago convicted murderer Scott Peterson is currently angling to get his murder conviction thrown out and a get a whole new trial from scratch, many scars and wounds from that 2004 trial are being reopened. And there is surely some degree of sexism to the fact that a gaggle of journalists nicknamed Juror No. 7 “Strawberry Shortcake” over her pink-dyed hair. Hey, we all used language in 2004 that we now regret.
But sadly, some journalists are still using this nickname in their headlines today. Come to think of it, since Scott Peterson's prison attire is a red jumpsuit, maybe we should be calling him Strawberry Shortcake?
Testimony today may determine if convicted killer Scott Peterson gets another day in court. KRON4's Camila Barco has the story. https://t.co/gqMVVopX1s— KRON4 News (@kron4news) February 25, 2022
Juror No. 7’s real name is Richelle Nice (it’s pronounced like “nice” and not like “Nice, France”), and she no longer has pink hair. But she has become the focus of Peterson’s attempt to overturn his conviction. The Bay Area New Group reports that Peterson’s attorneys claim she lied on a jury questionnaire back in 2004, saying she had never been the victim of a crime, but now Peterson’s team alleges that she had been the victim of domestic violence by an ex-boyfriend, and had a restraining order against that same fellow’s ex-girlfriend.
“If she had told the truth, she never would have been put on the jury,” Peterson’s lawyer Pat Harris told the News Group.
Nice now describes a fight with the father of 2 of her kids.... ‘I took off on him. I punched him. I hit him and he called police.’ She said he was later arrested. Later, in a letter to Scott Peterson, Nice said he made life ‘a living hell.’— Evan Sernoffsky (@EvanSernoffsky) February 25, 2022
KTVU’s Evan Sernoffksy live-tweeted the grilling Nice took from Peterson’s attorneys, and she seemed to hold up well. Moreover, on the domestic violence front, she testified that she hit the ex-boyfriend, not the other way around. She says she did not consider herself the victim of a crime, and got the restraining order out of self-defense, as she was pregnant at the time.
One of the questions on the jury questionnaire asked whether jurors have an opinion about people who have affairs. Nice answered that she did not. She testified that she didn’t like her ex cheating on her.— Evan Sernoffsky (@EvanSernoffsky) February 25, 2022
Lawyers also pressed her on her potential bias against men who have affairs, because as you may recall, Peterson’s mistress Amber Frey pretty much did him in with taped phone calls that proved Peterson was lying. Additionally, that reference to “Little Man” is a term Nice used in letters she wrote to Peterson in prison, referring to the unborn child he was found guilty of killing.
Horribleness of Scott Peterson’s attorneys aside, this all leads to an interesting legal question. Are you the victim of a crime if you don’t consider yourself the victim of a crime? Is it legally considered lying if you say you’re not the victim of a crime, though some district attorney somewhere could technically prosecute your case as a crime? These seem like Hail Mary attempts by Peterson’s team, but the scheme could work.
Speaking of the horribleness of Scott Peterson’s attorneys, celebrity lawyer Mark Geragos who represented Peterson in 2004, is expected to take the stand Tuesday. Richelle Nice will testify further on Monday.
Related: 'It Makes Me Sick to Be Here': Family Members of Laci Peterson Confront Scott Peterson at Resentencing [SFist]
REDWOOD CITY, CA - MARCH 16: Juror Richelle Nice arrives at the courthouse March 16, 2005 in Redwood City, California. Nice, who was a member of the jury, was attending the formal sentencing of Scott Peterson who was convicted of two counts of murder and has received the death penalty in the deaths of his wife and their unborn child. (Photo by John Green-Pool/Getty Images)