Nanny Trial: Finest hour for the drill-sergeant defence lawyer from the wrong side of the tracks
Saturday 01 November 1997
But Leone is a man of famous determination. With his Marine drill sergeant demeanour and severe haircut, you know he is a man who will not easily give up.
That, indeed, has been the story of his life. Mr Leone - Gerry - was born in north Boston, on the wrong side of society's tracks, but made it into this city's greatest pride, Harvard University. He managed it through an sporting scholarship, and paid his own way through law school.
In his closing argument we discovered his determination. For a solid hour, he spoke to the jury without notes. He blithely disobeyed Judge Hiller Zobel's instruction to stay within arm's reach of the lectern, pacing intensely back and forth along the jury box. And he saved his best for the last moments of that closing speech. For the first 50 minutes he seemed the Leone we knew, the prosecutor who had barely been able to lay a glove on the defendant in his cross-examination, and had not even tried to press her on the charge itself: had she killed this boy?
But in the last 10 minutes he let rip. In vivid language he described to jurors his picture of what happened on 4 February: a frustrated, furious nanny, grappling with a baby who would not be consoled - a "wet, cranky, slippery, fussy" Matty Eappen, who would not stop crying. Then, he rushed on, she snapped. She shook him and slammed him about the head. "And then Matty wasn't crying any more".
He had saved for these minutes, too, an observation that perhaps said more to the jury than all the medical evidence. Louise said on the telephone to emergency services that she thought Matty had choked on his own vomit. Repeatedly she was told to turn him on to his stomach, but she never did that. Why not, he asked? Because she knew that choking on vomit had nothing to do with his distress.
What sympathy does Mr Leone have for Louise? Scant. "She had numerous opportunities to tell the Eappens and everyone what happened, and she didn't do that."
- 2 Rarest Beanie Baby of them all could be sold for £62,500 on eBay
- 3 Driving while dehydrated can be just as dangerous as drink driving, study suggests
- 5 Farmer told to tear down mock-Tudor castle after hiding construction behind hay bales
Alan Rickman admits editing 'terrible' script with friends in Pizza Hut behind backs of writers on Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves
Rarest Beanie Baby of them all could be sold for £62,500 on eBay
Professional big game hunter Ian Gibson crushed to death by elephant during hunt
Ben Affleck asked TV chiefs to hide slave-owning ancestry, new hacked Sony emails published by Wikileaks claim
Farmer told to tear down mock-Tudor castle after hiding construction behind hay bales
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
The only black face in the Ukip manifesto is on the page about overseas aid
Ukip is the only main political party to not address LGBT rights in its manifesto
Food banks: One million Britons will soon be using them, according to Trussell Trust
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling
BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate
£18000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They work with major vehicle ma...
£16500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Chiropractic Assistant is needed in a ...
£18000 - £26000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They work with major vehicle ma...
£28000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company provides coaching ...