PONTIAC, Mich. - Testimony is back underway Thursday in the trial of Mitchell Young, who is charged in the baseball attacks on the Cipriano family. Local 4's Guy Gordon brings us testimony from inside the courtroom.
Mitchell Young enters the court around 8:40A.
He appears to be wearing the same dark suit he's worn all week.
Judge Shalina Kumar takes the bench at 8:48A
We expect to hear testimony from first responders who came to the grisly scene on the morning of April 16th, 2012
Eric Buckberry takes the stand. Farmington Hills Police Officer for more than a decade. He was first on the scene.
At 2:52 A.M. he was called to the Cipriano home. Buckberry was sent to a domestic violence call between two brothers.
Buckberry: I was updated there might be a baseball bat involved and that several other people might be involved. It's 3:00 in the morning so I'm driving 65 mph.
My car was parked in the street
Officer identifies photo of front of Cipriano home. Windows were open. The window with light was Salvatore's room
Buckberry: As we approach the door there is a banging noise, to this day I don't know what that is. I announce we are police officers.
There was no response.
As I come to the door there's a little girl in her nightgown looking at me. (8 year old Isabella Cipriano) We look at each other for 2 seconds. A male subject then comes running by.
He runs right into the little girl, knocking her to the ground and continues up the stairs. The little girl gets up and lets me in. She leads me further into the house.
He went up this flight of stairs? Yes. These are blood smears? Yes
When you looked down the stairs, what did you see? The first person I see is Rose Cipriano on left side of staircase. I tried to get a response from either one of them.
Rosemary was moving but was unresponsive. They were breathing. She seemed like she was moving reactionary. (Sal) was barely breathing and was not moving. He was face down and badly injured.
Rose had a lot of blood on her, hair, face, eye was swollen. You could see it was a very bad injury.
When I get the call I have no idea what I was being called to.
Tanner Young apprehended. He is uninjured. They don't know what the situation is, so he is treated as a suspect.
Buckberry: He's handcuffed, searched and put on a couch.
He tells me his brother, and a friend, attacked his father with a baseball bat.
As I'm talking to Tanner the questions are coming to him rapid fire. He didn't know who the other person in the house is.
At that point his eyes get big and he says, "There he comes!" It is Mitchell Young coming down the stairs.
As I see him I start moving towards entrance of the stairs.
What I plan on doing is meeting him at the bottom of the stairs.
As soon as I can I grab him by the shirt, force him to the ground and handcuff him.
As I reached up to grab him he has blood on his hands and on the shirt.
Can you point out that person? Yes, he is seated at defense table in a dark suit and purple tie. (Mitchell Young)
We return to Tanner and at this point we see the two victims, Tanner, and Young and other officers begin arriving.
We went upstairs and started searching for a victim, or more people responsible for the crime.
In master bedroom we find blood on the floor.
When we're done on the second floor we move to the basement.
As we're clearing the upstairs I hear on the radio it's now a homicide.
It gets your attention, the people I've seen were injured. We kept on clearing the rooms.
Buckberry: Rose is moving now... she keeps inching towards her son.
We're trying to keep her still, calling for a medic. Salvatore was having a hard time breathing. We had to move the mother off of him. She was compressing him.
As we were holding Rose she had the young man in her arms. He was gurgling, breathing was difficult.
She was cradling him like this
Things have settled down, house is safe, no more victims, no more responsibles to locate.
Tanner is still handcuffed. We're getting more comfortable that he's not responsible for this. I take him out the back door. I don't want him to see the scene.
Young was crying where they cuffed him and placed him. He only says, "Tucker just kept swinging." "He was hysterical."
Buckberry testifies they used a tracking dog to try and find Tucker Cipriano.
Dog lost the scent in a parking lot at a nearby office building. He returns to the police office for supplies and returns to the scene.
Buckberry testifies he left scene roughly 5 or 6 hours.
Buckberry is cross-examined by defense attorney Michael McCarthy
When Tanner opens his eyes and you look up the stairs you see Mr. Young for the first time? Yes.
Was he running? Yeah, he was moving fast.
He (Mitchell) was having a hard time talking, he was very upset. He just said "Tucker went crazy and started swinging."
Was his ability to speak impaired by the crying? Yes, you couldn't have a conversation with him.
McCarthy: Was his breathing labored? Was it interrupting what he was trying to say. Yes, he was hysterical, and having difficulty getting in control.
He is talking in the same manner but he told me his back and neck hurt, that he was injured.
Defense attorney: Did he cause you any problems? Burkberry: No. Was he cooperative? I guess so, yeah.
Farmington Hills police officer Michael Meister takes the stand
I saw an individual run in from my right, knock down the little girl and run up the stairs. The little girl opened the door for us.
I saw blood on the floor and the head of a person on the stairwell going downstairs. I picked the little girl up and ran her to my police car.
I radioed for medics and more cars. I could hear yelling going on behind me. Officer Buckberry was confronting a white male telling him to sit down.
It was Tanner Cipriano. We had seen an unknown male run up the steps, I had my gun drawn and we told him to come down. Officer Buckberry grabs him.
We took him down and handcuffed him. At that point I go outside and saw a burgundy escape. It was a neighbor.
Rose Cipriano had fallen on top of him. (Salvatore) We opened his airway.
When we pulled her off she was in danger of going down the steps, so I was holding her head basically trying to hold her head together.
Salvatore was so badly injured the officer says he couldn't even tell how old he was. His face was so puffed up.
Medics evacuate Rose C.
Prosecution ends questioning of Off. Meister
You saw Mr. Young come down the stairs? Would it be fair to say you both gave him the command to come down? How long did it take.
Meister: One, maybe two minutes. It wasn't a long time, but it wasn't immediate.
Did Mr. Young offer any resistance? No.
McCarthy: Was he crying at that time? Meister: He was upset. I asked him if he was hurt and he indicated he would like medical attention. That ended my contact with him.
Officer Bonnie Unruh testifying - third officer on the scene.
She describes how she discovered Salvatore Cipriano choking on his own blood... I cleared his airway but it kept filling with blood.
Medics arrived and took control.
It was very upsetting, you have a whole family, and you don't know if they're going to make it or not.
She saw legs on the floor of the kitchen. The victim appeared on the floor. It was Robert Cipriano.
There was a large pool of blood around his head. His arm was behind his back as he lay on his face.
They were told sons were fighting but this appeared to be the dad.
Jury and witness is shown crime scene photo of Robert's body in kitchen. He is clad only in his briefs.
**We should explain this is a pool feed from an independent service. We would have chosen not to show these photos**
Unruh testifies Mitchell Young is wailing in a loud screech. She calls it annoying.
The family dog begins growling at Mitchell Young. He tells officers he was hit in the mouth.
The dog becomes quiet. But I realize we needed to get dog out of office because it was unpredictable.
I asked Tanner if there was a leash. I attempted to take the dog, but it was growling and not going to let me near.
the dog came from underneath the desk. The dog was hurt, limping at the hip. Animal control came and picked up the dog.
I thought I saw blood underneath the dog.
Officers mounted a door to door search for Tucker.
I stayed out of the house and we did a search until we were told Tucker had been located.
It was about 8A? I'm not sure.
Officer is dismissed.
Camera pans to gallery and several members of the Cipriano family grim-faced. Some are wiping tears away.
Throughout it all Mitchell Young never showed any emotion that we could see.
11:40 a.m. LUNCH BREAK
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