Written by B. Elliot Stern
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Topics: Dogs, Murder

Wednesday, 3 March 2004

Redwood City, Calif. - Prosecutors in the Scott Peterson murder trial unveiled plans today to call one of the scent-sniffing rescue dogs used in the investigation to the witness stand. Maddie, a Black Labrador or African-American Labrador as they are now called, is the dog that tracked Laci Peterson's scent to the end of the pier in the Berkeley Marina where Scott Peterson went fishing on Christmas Eve morning.

"Putting a dog on the witness stand is a risky move, especially in a capital murder trial," said San Francisco State University law professor William Goodman. "Jurors may find the dog cute and loveable, but will they find her credible? That's the question everyone has on their mind right now."

Maddie's handler, Eloise Anderson, has been working with attorneys from the Stanislaus County District Attorney's office in recent weeks to prep Maddie for what is sure to be an intense cross examination from defense attorney Mark Geragos. "Maddie is one of the most professional dogs I have ever worked with," said Anderson. "I have no doubt that she will be able to handle any bone the defense throws at her."

This is not the first high profile case Maddie has been involved in. You may recall hearing her name back in 1995 during the O.J. Simpson trial, where she was part of the team that worked to find Nicole Simpson's killer in and around her Brentwood condo. Maddie never testified during that trial due to a condition that she has since overcome which caused her to uncontrollably defecate and urinate when put under any kind of stress.

Testimony is expected to begin later this month.

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