Defense begins effort to clear Brett Seacat

Brett Seacat's older half brother Robert Seacat takes the stand.
Brett Seacat's older half brother Robert Seacat takes the stand.

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KINGMAN, Kansas — The prosecution rested its case in the Brett Seacat trial Tuesday morning, but not before making one final effort to break down the defendant’s story.

The former Sedgwick County deputy is accused of the shooting death of his estranged wife Vashti Seacat and of burning their Kingman home.

Seacat claims Vashti set the fire and committed suicide.

He told investigators he went to Vashti’s burning bedroom, where flames on the bed and floor were a foot or two high, and tried to lift Vashti off the bed before realizing she was dead.

Tuesday morning, the prosecution focused on pictures of Seacat’s arms, hands and torso. The photos showed no obvious burns or other marks on Seacat’s body.

“Do you see any injuries there?” asked the prosecutor.

“No, I do not,” said Doug Monty, KBI investigator.

“Any singeing of hair?”

“No, I do not,” said Monty.

Prosecutors brought three dozen witnesses to the stand over nine days.

Tuesday afternoon, the attorneys for the former deputy began to try to prove his innocence.

They say Vashti was depressed, lit the family’s home on fire, crawled into bed and used a .44 caliber handgun to commit suicide.

Brett Seacat’s older half brother Robert Seacat, a former state trooper, took the stand.

The morning Vashti died, he told police Brett and Vashti seemed happy, but he told jurors Vashti seemed depressed and withdrawn the Easter weekend before she died.

“She acted depressed,” he testified. “She looked like she’d lost a great deal of weight, looked sleepy and acted depressed.”

Robert also insisted to jurors that his brother did have injuries after the fire at the home.

And Robert complained that no gun powder residue test was conducted on Brett in spite of Robert’s pleas to the KBI to conduct the test.

“The statement I made to Jeff Newsom (KBI) was, ‘I don’t want anybody coming back six months from now pointing fingers, and that test not having been done,'” said Robert.

Jurors also heard from a defense handwriting expert who says the alleged suicide note found in Vashti’s journal was written by Vashti.

Prosecutors say the note is a forgery.

KSN will continue to bring you complete coverage of the trial on KSN and KSN.com.

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