Updated: 09/20/2013 7:30 AM KSTP.com By: Jennie Olson
Testimony in the murder trial of Jeffery Trevino continues Friday.
Thirty-nine-year-old Trevino is accused of killing his wife, Kira Steger. The case drew a lot of attention after she went missing back in February; her body was found more than two months later in the Mississippi River.
Opening statements from both the prosecution and defense were given Thursday morning. The prosecution said this was a case of "rage, jealousy and deception." Andrew Johnson, the prosecutor, painted their marriage as a failed one that came to an "abrupt and painful end."
Defense Attorney John Conard said the couple was "in the process of putting their marriage together."
The first witness called to the stand was Felicia Krejci, Steger's youngest sister. Krejci said Steger confided in her that she was unhappy in their marriage and wanted to leave Trevino.
From the list of 55 witnesses, in the following days, we expect to hear from Matt, the roommate who slept in the basement of the couple's rental home; the Medical Examiner who tested the food found inside Steger's stomach after her body was found in the Mississippi River; and the waitress at Crave, the restaurant where Steger and Trevino shared their last meal on a date at the Mall of America Feb. 21.
Thursday, Johnson listed areas where investigators found suspicious stains in the couple's bedroom. Johnson noted the floorboards under the carpet were stained in what looked like a torso and head pattern. The carpet had a stain, as well as the box spring and the bookshelf in the couple's bedroom. But Conard said tests showed there was, "less than a thimble of Kira Trevino's blood in the master bedroom."
On the stand, Steger's sister, Keri Anne Steger, spoke of the phone call in which she learned her sister was missing. She said she didn't hear from Trevino until two days after her sister's disappearance. In that phone call, she remembers Trevino saying, "I thought I knew Kira. I loved her," in which Keri Anne replied, "why are you speaking about my sister in the past tense?"
In the coming days we expect to learn much more about the night of Kira Steger's disappearance. There is surveillance tape from the Mall of America where her car was found and video from a gas station and from a neighbor's house - all yet to be reviewed. We also have yet to learn about the bag of evidence Kira Steger's grandfather found at Keller Lake containing a bloody pillow and sports bra matching her DNA.
There's also the state in which her body was in when a barge cleaner found it floating in the Mississippi River. Conard noted in opening statements that Kira Steger had been missing for 76 days, yet there was "no evidence of fish activity" on her body.
Twelve jurors and two alternates were chosen from a pool of more than 50 Ramsey County citizens.
Kira Steger’s body went missing on Feb. 21 and wasn’t found until May 8. Her dental records and autopsy photos will be key evidence in the case as well as bank records, text messages and surveillance video from the Mall of America, where her car was found.
The most graphic piece of evidence will be the copious amounts of blood police say they found in the couple’s Payne-Phalen home in St. Paul.
Click here to read the complaint: Warning it contains graphic content.