Diver Tells Smith Jury of Watery Grave

<i> From Reuters</i>

Susan Smith, her family and even spectators at her murder trial broke down in tears Wednesday as a diver testified about finding the bodies of her two young sons in her car at the bottom of John D. Long Lake.

“I was able to see a small hand against the glass,” said Steve Morrow.

“My best guess at the time was that they were in the car seats and they were hanging upside down. I was able to determine that there was one occupant on either side of the vehicle.”

As others also wept, Smith’s former husband, David, who has watched stoically through most of the nine-day-long trial, leaned forward and was consoled by his father.

“It just made everybody very sad,” defense attorney David Bruck told reporters after the session. “It’s tragic.”


Prosecutor Tommy Pope said the testimony had been restrained, despite its grisly nature. “We curtailed the graphic nature of what he [Morrow] in fact did see.”

In later testimony, state crime scene analyst Steve Derrick described removing the shoeless boys from the car, which he said had been in neutral, with the parking brake off.

Smith has admitted strapping the boys--3-year-old Michael and 14-month-old Alex--into the car and rolling it into the lake on Oct. 25. But for nine days after the killings, Smith, who is white, had claimed that a black carjacker took her car and the boys.

Also Wednesday, Smith’s former boyfriend told the jury he had two tense meetings with her on the afternoon of the killings and feared she would kill herself.

Tom Findlay, son of a wealthy textile mill owner, also said he broke off his romance with Smith only in part because he did not want children in his life.