Monday, March 10, 2008
Matt and Kari Baker
at 12:48 PM
On April 7, 2006, Kari turned up dead in their home. Matt says she asked him to go rent a movie after the 11 p.m. news, and to gas up the car. When he returned, she was naked on the bed, dead, and had left a suicide note: an unsigned, typewritten note that consisted of one small paragraph (only a few sentences).
Investigators ruled her death a suicide (by overdose). No autopsy was performed on Kari.
A lone detective took photographs of the scene and the justice of the peace -- who didn't come to the house -- made a ruling of suicide over the phone and without an autopsy (ABC 20/20).But Kari's family didn't believe it, and after several months, they managed to dig up enough questions that the justice of the peace changed his ruling. In September, when Texas Rangers went to arrest Matt at a school where he was a substitute teacher, Matt fled the scene, but shortly thereafter turned himself in (source). Matt was arrested and charged in the murder of his wife and is now awaiting trial.
Read moreThere is a pile of circumstantial evidence in this case that doesn't bode well for Matt. Kari's suicide note, typed and unsigned, is very unusual. Women usually have a lot more to say than one small paragraph if they are going to write a suicide note. I would really like to see what the note said, but I haven't been able to find it anywhere.
Matt also has admitted to searching for overdosing on sleeping pills on the Internet, but said it was only because he was concerned about his wife.
"I did research to see can you overdose, is that even a possibility that I need to worry about, my wife overdosing on sleeping pills," Matt said (source).I find Matt's words here interesting. When I watch Matt talk, he gives the classic thinking-on-your feet speech behaviors. He doesn't seem to be recollecting things, but rather thinking as he speaks. This is not conducive to honesty.
Kari confided in a counselor before her death that she found crushed pills in Matt's briefcase, and she told the counselor she feared Matt might kill her, because she believed he was having an affair. And cell phone records and records from Matt's work phone reveal several times a day for weeks she was calling the daughter of the music director at the church where Matt was preaching.
“She was kind of panicked about the whole situation when she found those crushed pills. No. Really, she was a lot panicked,” Shae Dickey, who taught with Kari Baker at Spring Valley Elementary School in Hewitt, told the Tribune-Herald. “She suspected that he was having an affair, and she told me she thought he was trying to kill her (source)."And within days of Kari's death, Matt was seen with the music director's daughter shopping for jewelry, apparently an engagement ring. Matt says he was just looking to buy his daughter earrings.
I also find Matt emotionless. Listen to Matt's 911 call here when he finds his wife's dead body.
Doesn't he sound like this is a routine call to say, perhaps, the cleaners? Does he sound like a husband who is upset or distraught that his wife is dead?
Worse for Matt is that he couldn't even keep his facts straight on 20/20. He changed his story about finding and reading the suicide note. When he talks to the 911 operator, he says he found the suicide note. Yet when he talks to 20/20, he says that the police officers found it, and when John Quinones questions him, you can clearly see that he gets nervous.
John Quinones also asked Matt if he was capable of killing his wife, and the way Matt answered this question really raised the hairs on my head. He stopped, thought about it, and then answered. He said, "Absolutely!..." I think he meant to say absolutely not, but he forgot the word "not" in his scheming brain. I wish there was a clip of that segment online, but I have been unable to find it.
You can read the affidavit in this case here:
I don't believe Matt for a variety of reasons, and I don't believe you need "Eyes for Lies" to see why.
There are too many witnesses coming forward to say they saw Matt do something for which Matt has a totally different version of events, or denies. Second are Matt's lack of emotions when he talks about a wife he supposedly loved. Third, Matt's speech shows signs of thinking-on-his-feet behavior. And last, Matt can't keep his facts straight, and he tells different people different things, which strongly supports someone who is less than honest.
This will be interesting to watch go to trial.
Source 1, 2, 3
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