ELLSWORTH – How a Bar Harbor teenager died dominated the second day of the murder trial of her former classmate and friend.
Just before a forensic pathologist for the medical examiner took the stand in the rape and murder trial of Jalique Keene, 22, the prosecution warned family members some of the images might be brutal.
Keene is charged with assaulting, strangling, and savagely beating Mikaela Conley, 19, on June 1, 2018 on the grounds of the local elementary school.
The defense team for Keene objected to the introduction of the Dr. Margaret Greenwald’s photos from the autopsy, but Justice Robert Murray allowed them to be entered into evidence.
“That is something that we do in a case of this nature. The photos are prejudicial,” said Dawn Corbett, who along with Jeffrey Toothaker are representing Keene.
Greenwald, the former chief medical examiner for Maine who now works part-time, used diagrams and photos of Conley to explain how she was injured and what caused her death.
She said the teenager had cuts and bruises all over her 93-pound body, some from being dragged and choked, and others from being sexually assaulted and severely being beaten about the head, which caused her death. Greenwald also said the person who assaulted Conley apparently hit her so hard she chipped a tooth.
Earlier in the day, Maine State Police detectives testified about finding blood and other evidence around the school.
“I think today is going well,” Corbett said standing on the steps of the Hancock County Superior Courthouse. “We have a number of questions we wanted to ask on cross examination and that’s what we did and got the information we wanted from the witnesses.”
She added, “I think the state will be done later today or tomorrow.”
Corbett said it hasn’t been decided if Keene will take the stand in his own defense.
“We are not sure at this point,” the defense attorney said.
The medical examiner said it’s clear Mikaela fought for her life.