Women exposed explicit online messages in hot car death trial

Ross Harris breaks down in court again

Four different women were paraded through the witness stand on Thursday to discuss the nature of their sexually explicit online relationships with Ross Harris. 

Each of the women, who were in their late teens at the time, exchanged sexually provocative text messages and images with Ross Harris using Whisper, Kik and other online messaging platforms.

Prosecutors called the women to the stand, and over several objections by defense counsel, asked them about salacious details regarding their relationships, and whether or not Harris discussed what life would be like without his son.

Just before Thursday’s mid-morning recess, while images of texts and other content from Ross Harris’ electronic devices were flashed on a screen for the jury to see, one image gave Harris himself pause – a photograph of little Cooper Harris, sleeping.

Ross Harris, was visibly moved, and could be seen reaching for tissue, as the judge called for a recess.

Thursday morning, Cobb County Detective R.B. Smith of the Cobb County Police Department's High Tech Crime Unit took the stand for a second day to examine logs from the instant messaging app Whisper.

Ross Harris used Whisper to exchange explicit messages with women in the time leading up to the death of his infant son Cooper in the backseat of his SUV outside a Vinings office park building in June 2014, in what he calls a tragic accident. 

University of Alabama student Alexandra Swindell closed out the Thursday morning session of the trial. She admitted to exchanging explicit online messages with Harris. After the lunch recess, Molly Sims took the stand. As an 18-year-old, Sims said she exchanged explicit text and online messages with Harris on Scout and Kik.

Following Sims, prosecutors called Elizabeth Smith, who not only spoke with Harris online via Whisper and Kik, but spoke with him via telephone and met with him in person. 

Prosecutors spent more time with the next witness -- Jaynie Meadows. Harris spent time both online and offline with Meadows.

Ross Harris faces a number of charges, including malice murder and felony murder in the June 2014 death of his young son, Cooper. The boy was found in the backseat of Harris' SUV in a Vinings office park. Harris maintains it was a tragic accident.

Thursday marks day ten of testimony in the trial, which was moved downstate to Brunswick from Cobb County, after a judge ruled a non-biased jury could not be found locally.

Testimony initially turned to sexually-explicit messages in the trial of the man charged in the hot car death of his toddler son Wednesday afternoon, when chat logs between Harris and women he had spent time exchanging illicit messages with came to light. 

Caitlin Hickey Floyd took the stand to discuss her use of the apps Whisper and Kik to exchange explcit messages and images with Ross Harris. 

Defense attorneys renewed their continuing objections to the admission of her testimony into the record. The judge overruled the objections, allowing Floyd to continue. 

Later in the day, Cobb County Detective R.B. Smith of the High Tech Crime Unit took the stand to deliver testimony regarding the chat logs from the Whisper app as well as other forensic evidence.

Among the statements listed in the logs presented while Smith was on the stand was a statement from Harris to Floyd: "I hate being married with kids. The novelty has worn off and I have nothing to show for it."

A second statement from Harris in the log said, "I love my son and all but we both need escapes."

(© 2016 WXIA)


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