NEW YORK (Reuters) – For more than a week, jurors in the federal kidnapping conspiracy trial of so-called New York “cannibal cop” Gilberto Valle have been exposed to talk, imagery and video detailing extraordinary brutality against women.
On Tuesday, defense attorneys are set to begin presenting their case but jurors will not get a chance to hear from Valle himself, according to Stephanie Cirkovich, spokeswoman for the District Court in Manhattan.
“I just learned that defendant Valle is not testifying,” Cirkovich said in a statement.
The grim-faced panel – six men and six women – have listened intently as witnesses read excerpts aloud from dozens of Web chats and emails in which Valle talked with others in graphic, often gleeful detail about raping, murdering, cooking and eating women.
Those women included his own now-estranged wife, Kathleen Mangan-Valle, whose tearful testimony against him last week was the emotional crescendo of the prosecution’s case.
On Monday, before resting their case, prosecutors played a video allegedly found on Valle’s computer in which a chained woman shrieks as she appears to be burning alive, according to local media reports.
An FBI computer forensics expert testified that the video appears to be staged using an actress.