The way the prosecution presents it, in early October 2016 Steven Bourgoin was being hounded by creditors.
“Calls coming in from PayPal creditor and Capital One,” pointed out deputy state’s attorney Sarah Hardin.
Bourgoin has been on trial since May 6 for second-degree murder for the deaths of Mary Harris, 16, of Moretown; Cyrus Zschau, 16, of Moretown; Liam Hale, 16, of Fayston; Janie Cozzi, 15, of Fayston; and Eli Brookens, 16, of Waterbury.
Bourgoin’s defense is that he was insane when he drove the wrong way on the I-89 and crashed into the Volkswagen Jetta carrying the five teenagers.
Two forensic psychiatrists have testified this week, on behalf of the defense, that Bourgoin was experiencing a psychotic break at the time.
On Thursday, prosecutors continued their rebuttal to Bourgoin’s insanity defense.
They called Vermont State Police Detective Trooper Cari Crick, who conducted call record analysis for the Bourgoin investigation.
She walked jurors through evidence that includes the phone calls from creditors and a Verizon bill that topped $1,000.
Also, phone records showed he was up throughout the night texting with his longtime friend’s wife.
The day before the wrong way crash, October 7, 2016, Bourgoin quit his job at Lake Champlain Chocolates.
That night, his records show, he called Todd Taylor.
“Based on his commercials, ‘Todd Taylor, Todd Taylor.’ He’s a bankruptcy attorney,” said Crick.
A defense witness, Sy Ray, testified cell phone mapping shows Bourgoin visited the Winooski River on the night of October 7.
“It’s going to remain there for about an hour period and then the records abruptly stop,” he said.
Bourgoin’s defense attorney Robert Katims says Bourgoin received a Facebook message from a childhood acquaintance.
Bourgoin said it was a random event that, during his psychosis, he felt was a sign to throw his phone in the river.
So he did.
The state points, however, Bourgoin reached out to the friend first, saying he had “hot looking friends.”
“These were the text messages that caused him to smash his phone and get rid of it?” asked Susan Hardin, deputy state’s attorney.
“The Facebook messages, yes,” answered Crick.
But Katims says the friend may have posted on Bourgoin’s wall first.
He has an answer for the PayPal calls too: it could have been robocalls.
“You’re not aware that people have sued PayPal creditor to say ‘you keep calling my phone, I don’t owe you any money?” asked Katims.
“I am not,” answered Crick.
Katims implies through questioning that Bourgoin’s Verizon bill was high because he just bought a new cell phone.
As for the bankruptcy attorney, Todd Taylor, Bourgoin has said during his psychosis, he was gleaning messages from his truck radio.
“If that jingle is played on the radio, it might come over a car radio, right?” asked Katims.
“Possibly,” said Crick.
“As part of that advertisement, you remember that a phone number is part of that advertisement?” asked Katims.
“Yes,” answered Crick.
The state will be calling more witnesses tomorrow, including Dr. Paul Cotton who determined Bourgoin was sane at the time of the crash.
Final arguments are scheduled for Monday.