What was Karen Read’s blood alcohol level the night John O’Keefe died? Experts testify at trial

DEDHAM – Children connected to Karen Read The murder trial took place Tuesday, after the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agent concluded his testimony. Brian Higgins. The prosecutor in the case also focused on Read’s blood alcohol level the night of O’Keefe’s death.

Prosecutors say Read hit and killed John O’Keefeher Boston police officer boyfriend, with his SUV and left her to die in the snow outside Brian Albert’s Canton home in 2022. Read’s defense attorneys say she is the victim of a cover-up by law enforcement, and they claim Higgins could be one of the men in fact implied in O’Keefe’s death.

Karen Read’s blood alcohol level

Justin Rice, who was an emergency room doctor at Good Samaritan Hospital in Brockton at the time of O’Keefe’s death, took the stand Tuesday.

Processed rice Read the morning of January 29, 2022.

She was taken to hospital just before 8am under a “Section 12” order. Rice described him as being “in voluntary custody,” usually due to a mental health issue.

Rice said blood tests were performed on Read. She had a blood alcohol level (BAC) of 93 milligrams per deciliter, or 0.093%. The legal blood alcohol limit in Massachusetts for driving is 0.08%.

Later, Nicholas Roberts, who at the time was a member of the Massachusetts Bureau of Alcohol Testing and working with the Massachusetts State Police Crime Lab Unit, spoke.

He talked about a type of “backward” test that allows the lab to estimate what a person’s blood alcohol level would have been hours before an official blood test was taken.

Read’s blood was drawn at 9:08 a.m. Using 12:45 a.m. as the estimated last drink Read had consumed, Roberts estimated that his blood alcohol level would previously have been a minimum of 0.135% or a maximum of 0.292%.

Defense attorney Elizabeth Little cross-examined Roberts in an attempt to show that the estimate might have been inaccurate. She said the testing method “operates with a lot of unknowns.”

“If Miss Read drank alcohol after 12:45 a.m. and before her blood was drawn at 9:08 a.m., your entire calculation would be invalid,” Little said. Roberts replied: “Yeah.”

John O’Keefe’s injuries

In addition to seeing Read, Rice treated O’Keefe when he was rushed to hospital after being found in the snow.

He described O’Keefe’s injuries, saying he was unconscious and intubated when he arrived at the emergency room.

O’Keefe was in cardiac arrest and had a body temperature of 80.1 degrees when he arrived. He had no pulse and also had a cut and other scratches on his forearm.

Children called to testify

Earlier in the day, around 10 a.m., all courtroom cameras were ordered to turn off as children in John O’Keefe’s care took the stand. O’Keefe took custody of his sister’s children after she died of cancer, and the children’s father died of a heart attack several months later.

A court order barred the media from broadcasting any information until the children had finished their testimony.

The children’s testimony lasted just under two hours.

Read and O’Keefe’s ‘sometimes difficult’ relationship

O’Keefe’s nephew, a young teenager, described the relationship between Read and O’Keefe as “difficult at times.”

“There were a lot of disagreements and arguments,” the boy said. He said the couple yelled frequently and disagreements became more frequent as O’Keefe’s death approached.

During cross-examination, Read’s attorney, David Yannetti, was soft-spoken, asking if the boy knew the phrase “raise your hand in anger.” He then asked whether O’Keefe or Read had each raised their hands in anger at the other, and the teen said no.

“I’m very sorry that you had to come here today. Nothing more,” Yannetti said as he concluded his cross-examination, prompting Judge Beverly Cannone to strike that comment from the record.

“Lots of arguments and fights”

The boy’s older sister, a teenager, said there had been good and bad days in the couple. She said that on bad days, Read would ignore the children. She also described problems in O’Keefe and Read’s relationship.

“It was good at the beginning but it was bad at the end,” the girl said. “There were a lot of arguments and fights.”

Like her brother, the girl tested confirmed that fights between the couple were more frequent in the run-up to O’Keefe’s death.

She told jurors about a fight between the couple in January 2022. O’Keefe was asking her to leave my house, she said. He said the relationship had run its course, that before it was fun and now it’s not. But the niece said Karen Read wouldn’t leave.

The morning John O’Keefe’s body was found

O’Keefe’s niece described the morning of Jan. 29, 2022, when the Boston police officer’s body was found at 34 Fairview Road in Canton.

The girl said she called Jennifer McCabe, a previous witness in the case, and put Read on speakerphone. McCabe would later go out with Read and Kerry Roberts to search for O’Keefe.

O’Keefe’s niece said she heard Read on the phone say “Maybe I did something, maybe a snowplow hit him.”

“She said they were arguing,” the girl tested.

According to the niece, Read’s story later changed as she called more people. She first mentioned there had been a fight and she wondered if she had hit O’Keefe, then in another phone call no fight was mentioned but she said maybe a plow had hit him.

“I’ve never seen her like that. Frantic. Pacing,” the girl said.

Yannetti’s cross-examination was again brief, asking questions similar to those he asked the girl’s brother.

“Desperate and inappropriate”

In court Tuesday afternoon, the defense criticized the prosecution’s decision to call O’Keefe’s niece and nephew to testify.

“It was desperate and inappropriate for the DA’s office to call children to try to prove a nonexistent motive that they failed to prove through their adult witnesses,” Yannetti said.

Cross-examination of Brian Higgins

Before the children were tested, Higgins was back on the stand for the remainder of his cross-examination. Last Friday, he read several “naughty” text messages he had exchanged with Read just days before O’Keefe’s death.

Defense attorney Alan Jackson handled the cross-examination Friday, but he was unable to appear Tuesday in Norfolk Superior Court. Yannetti continued the cross-examination in Jackson’s absence.

On Friday, Jackson accused Higgins of destroying his phone despite receiving a data retention order. Higgins said he threw it away.

When court resumed Tuesday, Yannetti again focused on Higgins discarding his phone.

“It went in a trash bag, yes,” Higgins said.

“You used a passive voice. It went into a trash bag, did it fly out of your hand unexpectedly into a trash bag, sir?” » said Yannetti. “Are you reluctant to say you put it in a trash bag, sir?”

Yannetti asked Higgins if it was important that no one see his text with members of the Albert family. “No sir, that’s not true,” Higgins replied.

“From this day on, no one will ever be able to discover the content you discussed on your phone again? asked Yannetti, before concluding the cross-examination after about 10 minutes.

Prosecutor Adam Lally then asked Higgins why he threw his phone away.

“Because it was beaten. It was broken. I already had a new phone. The only explanation is that I threw it away. That’s it,” Higgins said.

Higgins said one of the reasons he was getting rid of his phone was because someone he was investigating in another case posted his number online.

He also said that the phone didn’t mean much to him. “I’m divorced. I don’t have kids. I didn’t have the typical memories that someone would have on their phone,” Higgins said.

Brian Higgins ’embarrassed’ by text messages with Karen Read

After the cross-examination was completed, Lally questioned Higgins again.

Lally asked Higgins if he had told anyone else about the text messages with Read. He said no.

“On a personal level, I keep things to myself. I was a little embarrassed. Not really proud of them. It didn’t show me in a good light with respect that I was John’s friend.” , Higgins said.

Higgins finished his testimony and resigned after less than an hour on the stand Tuesday.

Who is Brian Higgins?

Higgins was one of the people at an after-party at Brian Albert’s home at 34 Fairview Road on January 29, 2022. Read’s defense mounts a guilty third party defense and claims Higgins is one of three men who allegedly could have killed O’Keefe. in a fight. They say the group then dragged O’Keefe’s body outside.

During his testimony Friday, Higgins said he considered O’Keefe a friend. The two men were drinking at the Waterfall Bar and Grille in Canton before leaving for Brian Albert’s house. But Higgins said he never saw O’Keefe again after leaving the bar.

Prosecutors introduced dozens of text messages between Read and Higgins, including one in which Read told Higgins “you’re hot.”

Higgins tested this a few weeks before O’Keefe’s death, Read “planted him with a kiss”. Read told Higgins in a text message that his relationship with O’Keefe had “deteriorated.”

On Friday, Jackson pressed Higgins about a 22-second phone call he had with Brian Albert at 2:22 a.m., the morning O’Keefe died. Higgins said he did not have a conversation with Albert and that it may have been a “butt dial.”

Karen Read, right, chats with her attorney David Yannetti, center, and Elizabeth Little, left, during her murder trial in Norfolk Superior Court, Tuesday, May 28, 2024, in Dedham, Massachusetts.

Stuart Cahill/The Boston Herald via AP, pool

Who is Karen Read?

Read, 45, of Mansfield, Massachusetts, was dating O’Keefe at the time of his death.

She is charged with second-degree murder, manslaughter while operating under the influence of alcohol and leaving the scene of bodily injury and death.

She has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

Karen Read trial schedule

Tuesday is the only day the court will sit for trial this week. There was no testimony Monday due to Memorial Day, and Judge Beverly Cannone said there would be no court for the rest of the week.

Next week there will be full days of testimony on Monday June 3 and Wednesday June 5 with a half day on Thursday June 6. There will be no hearing on Tuesday June 4 or Friday June 7.

Experts told WBZ-TV earlier this month that both sides risk losing the jury because the trial is taking longer than expected.

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