Peterson defense introduces new evidence

August 21, 2008 4:23:37 PM PDT
The Michael Peterson defense team introduced new evidence supporting the "Owl Theory" in a press conference Thursday.

The Durham County district attorney says the case will not be reopened anytime soon.

Eyewitness News met with an owl expert Thursday who explained why.

It's a beautiful bird but is it a cold blooded killer?

"No, absolutely not," bird rehabilitator Steven Stone said.

That's what Stone said he told a Durham attorney and police in 2003.

But Larry Pollard, Michael Peterson's former neighbor and now his attorney, is sticking to his theory -- an owl killed Kathleen Peterson, not her husband.

Armed with pictures, mounted owls and a man who claims he was attacked by an owl, Pollard explained during a press conference why Michael Peterson's case should be reopened.

"What is a microscopic feather doing in the wounds of Kathleen Peterson in that moment in time and being clutched in her left hand say to you?" Pollard asked.

That microscopic feather from the talons of an owl is what Pollard is calling new evidence. It was found on strands of Mrs. Peterson's hair.

"That gives an indication she was more than likely holding onto her own hair that was being pulled out by the root ball, and that's very painful," Pollard explained.

Chris Cox said he survived a bloody owl attack and the jokes people told afterward.

"I believe that an owl can actually do some serious damage," Cox said. "Unless I had something to back that up, who would've believed an owl came down and whacked you in the back of the head?"

Durham D.A. David Saacks said the case won't get a second look anytime soon. He's met with Peterson's attorney as many times as he's reviewed the case files.

"I think it's a far-fetched idea to say the least," Saacks said.

Stone admits owls attack when protecting their nests, but he said humans are hardly ever their prey.

"In the history of mankind, there's no record of an owl killing a person -- ever-- anywhere," Stone said.


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