LEBANON, IN (WAVE) - He's serving a 225 year sentence for murdering the wife and two young children of David Camm, but Monday morning Charles Boney told jurors that he went to Camm's Georgetown home on September 28, 2000 merely to sell Camm a second untraceable handgun.
Boney said Camm's wife and children arrived home and pulled into the garage just as they were completing the deal. Once Kim Camm and the children, Bradley and Jill, arrived, Boney claimed he saw David Camm go into the garage and heard him use that gun to kill his family.
"I heard a commotion, I heard a little bit of arguing, then I heard a 'No,' then a pop," Boney testified. "Then I heard a yell, 'Daddy!' that was clearly his son," Boney testified. "Then I heard a pop. Then I heard a third pop."
Boney said Camm came out of the garage, pointed the gun at him and tried to fire.
"But either it jammed or he ran out of projectiles," Boney said.
Boney said Camm then ran back into the garage, and Boney told jurors he gave chase. That's when Boney said he saw the bodies.
"I saw Mrs. Camm. I saw a little girl and a little boy, and David Camm said to me 'YOU did this,' and I said 'what the f--(expletive)," Boney said.
Under prosecutors' questioning, Boney testified that he ran to get into his car to get away, only to get lost as he turned onto a main road. He found himself parked at his old elementary school in New Albany, close to the home he shared with his mother and girlfriend.
"I'd thought about the fingerprints, the guns and the sweatshirt," Boney testified. "I thought he (Camm) would send officers after me."
Boney had testified that he and Camm had met about three months earlier, while playing a pickup game of basketball.
"He (Camm) was bragging about how he'd beaten us," said Boney, "I said I'd just gotten out of prison and was thinking more about freedom than winning or losing."
Boney testified the two would encounter each other about a month later at a grocery.
"He (Camm) was very curious about Charles Boney," Boney testified. "What I did, and whether I could do those things again."
"He'd ask whether I could get him a handgun that was untraceable."
Boney could and did. He told the jury he purchased a .380 pistol from a co-worker, and resold it to Camm in a park that very afternoon. Boney said he followed Camm to his home, where Camm asked him to return with a second gun about 7 p.m. on September 28.
Boney told the jurors he complied, handing the weapon to Camm wrapped in a gray sweatshirt. The sweatshirt is the same garment that investigators used to tie Boney to the crimes more than three-and-one half years later.
"I didn't see the sweatshirt in the garage (the night of the murders)," Boney told jurors. "If it was in there with the DNA on the shoes, I would have gotten the sweatshirt."
Boney testified that he placed Kim Camm's shoes on the roof of her Ford Bronco after tripping over them. He also claimed she was fully clothed when he observed the crime scene. Investigators found Kim Camm clad only in a dark sweater and dark underwear. Her pants had been removed.
Boney admitted that he'd lied in February 2005 when investigators first questioned him about his sweatshirt just as prosecutors were preparing to try Camm for the second time.
"I couldn't remember which sweatshirt it was, so I sugarcoated it a little," said Boney.
Boney also testified that he'd lied about knowing David Camm, at least at first.
"Because Charles Boney was only thinking about Charles Boney," he said. "I was scared to go back to prison, when what I was doing was digging my hole deeper and deeper for myself."
Asked to point out Camm in the courtroom, Boney referenced "the man in the dark suit jacket, blue shirt, and tie. Looking rather dapper."
Throughout Boney's testimony to prosecutors, Camm seethed and glared; staring at Boney a full ten minutes. Two Indiana State Police troopers stood watch over Boney, who was brought into court fully shackled and cuffed. Two additional officers joined Floyd and Boone County deputies to keep watch over Camm.
Prosecutors questioned Camm for an hour. However, Special Judge Jon Dartt must decide whether to break with an earlier ruling before Camm's attorneys will be allowed to cross-examine.
The defense claims prosecutors opened the door to reveal Boney's full criminal past by having him acknowledge his convictions for armed robbery and for the Camm family's murders.
"When the state claims that (Camm) staged the scene to appear like a sexual assault, and it wasn't, we need to be able to bring in the prior sex convictions of the defendant (Boney) who was there," attorney Stacy Uliana told the court. "The only reason we're here is because he (Camm) was denied two fair trials and the state declined to run Charles Boney's DNA. Boney is trying to say David Camm set him up as a 'patsy.' You can't convict a patsy of murder."
Prosecutors counter that acknowledging Boney's specific offenses doesn't make his entire record fair game.
"They want to prosecute Charles Boney for us; he's already been prosecuted," co-counsel Todd Meyer said. "This is merely a smokescreen to try to protect their client."
Dartt has asked both sides to provide him with case law supporting their respective positions. He promised an answer after lunch.
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