Grand Jury transcripts reveals new details on Pinyon Pines murders

RIVERSIDE, Calif. - News Channel 3 and CBS Local 2 obtained the grand jury transcripts that led to the arrest of Cristin Smith and Robert Pape.    

They're accused in the murders of Vicki Friedli, her boyfriend Jon Hayward, and Vicki's 18-year-old daughter Becky.

There is about 500 pages of testimony to go through, we have only gone through about half and will post updates once we've gone through more. 

Here's what we've learned so far.

The night of Sept. 17 2006, the house all three victims lived in burned to the ground. 

Investigators found Vicki Friedli and her boyfriend, Jon Hayward, in the ashes.  They found Becky's body burned in a wheelbarrow in the backyard.

We now know from the arson investigator's testimony somebody doused the house and Becky's body with gasoline before setting them on fire.  The investigator believes Becky's body got set on fire first, right where she was found.  Her body was not burned elsewhere and then moved.

The two suspects we learned planned to go hiking with Becky the night she died, but detectives testified they changed those plans and didn't see her at all according to police interviews.  Both Pape and Smith were called to testify and both plead the Fifth Amendment. 

Through phone record testimony we discovered In  the 48 hours before her death, Becky and Pape, her ex-boyfriend,  exchanged nine calls,  including one about two hours before her body was discovered. 

Investigator testimony reveled Pape left his job at Knotts Soak City after being suspended at 6:30 p.m., the night of the murders. 

Later Smith and Pape told police that they were headed to Mass, but found out they were too late. 

Phone records support that at 7:01 p.m. a call to Sacred Heart Church on Pape's cellphone and at 7:05 p.m. Smith's cellphone pings off a cell tower west of the church. 

After that is where their story gets called into question.

Both Pape and Smith told police they went to James Workmen Elementary School in Cathedral City to try out a paintball gun. 

Pape's phone puts him going up Highway 74 at 7:13 p.m.

Investigators also testified there was no evidence or reports of any paintball activity at the school during that time frame.   

Both phones then go silent, an FBI investigator testified that meant either the phones were turned off or had no reception.  

They were silent until a cell tower near Smith's house in the Valley picks up Pape's phone at 10:23 p.m.,  about a half an hour after a fire at Becky's house is reported. 

We should note that Becky's cellphone records from that same day show her pinging off a tower on Highway 74 at 4:40 p.m. before her phone goes silent.  It's unclear if it's the same tower as the one Pape's phone connected with.

Becky made several other calls later from a landline at her home in Pinyon Pines.  Presumably, the FBI investigator testified because her home had no reception.     

Pape and Smith contradicted each other about what car they were driving that night. 

Smith told police they were in a 1973 Oldsmobile, while Smith told police they were in his father's Acura, and the Oldsmobile was in the shop. 

Police interviewed Pape and Smith after the incident, but it took 13 months to search their homes with a warrant.

A detective testified the time lapse was in part because it took that long to obtain a search warrant and also because it happened at almost the same time as the Esperanza fire.  That shifted resources and attention for a time. 

DNA taken in 2007 ties at one of the suspects to the crime scene, but the arrests didn't happen until seven years later.

Part of the reason may be the fact that the FBI investigator who testified about the phone records,  did not get the phone records to analyze until 2011, five years after the incident. 

Why did it take so long? We are still looking for that answer. 

Now we should point out there were several other details we learned in these documents that don't link Pape and Smith to the crime. 

For example, shoe prints found near Becky's body, while the brand of shoe was determined, they were never matched to shoes owned by Pape or Smith. Though both did own shoes of that same brand.

The suspects owned guns the same caliber as the bullets found in two of the victims, but they have not been matched as the weapons that fired those bullets.

Also there is no evidence of a struggle near the wheelbarrow where Becky's body was found, or at the end of the wheelbarrow tire trail.  Her footprints were also not found, even though two sets of footprints were discovered to have been pushing the wheelbarrow away from the woods towards Becky's home. 

Also, Becky was found missing a shoe. It was never found. 

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