In the second day of the retrial of Glen Dale Gore, who is charged with first-degree murder of Debra Sue Carter 24 years ago, testimony centered on graphic photos and details of how she died.

Carter's childhood friend, Donna Johnson Palmisano, testified she found Carter's body on the bedroom floor of her apartment at approximately 11:40 a.m. Dec. 8. Palmisano said that although she had moved to Shawnee, the two continued to stay in close contact, and she had decided to ask Carter to join her for lunch. However, when she arrived at Carter's apartment at approximately 11:40 a.m., Palmisano said she found broken glass on the upstairs landing, the apartment door unlocked and Carter dead.

“She needed help,” Palmisano said. “I saw what was written on the formica table, ‘Don’t try and find us or else’ and I thought ‘Where are they? Are they going to hurt me?” She ran from the apartment and drove to Loves Store on Mississippi where she called Carter’s mother, who then called Charlie Carter to go check on their daughter because something was wrong.

Carter's parents, Charlie and Peggy Carter, waited outside the courtroom while crime scene photos of the victim and her apartment were shown.

“I don’t think she could have gone toe-to-toe with Glen,” Charlie Carter later testified in court, referring to his daughter Debra.

Dennis Smith was captain of the detective division of the Ada police department supervising the investigation when Carter was murdered. He said no fingerprints or smudges were found at the apartment during the investigation except the one left by Smith on the kitchen table, and a bloody palm print on the bedroom wall later identified as Carter’s.  He said the only fingerprint found in Carter’s car was on the back of a mirror and belonged to Mike Carpenter, Carter's co-worker at the Coachlight Club. Defense attorneys attacked the Ada Police Department's handling of evidence found at the crime scene and accused them of failing to perform a complete investigation.

Items taken into evidence in the 1982 investigation, such as hairs, bedding, a shampoo bottle, catsup bottle and clothing, were identified by Smith and entered as exhibits by the prosecution.

Dr. Fred Jordan, chief medical examiner and expert forensic pathologist, performed the autopsy on Carter’s body Dec. 9, 1982. Jordan was unavailable to testify at retrial, but his testimony from Gore’s first trial was read in his absence.  Judge Thomas Landrith instructed the jury to consider the prior testimony as evidence to be used in their decision.

“It is not uncommon to read prior testimony; not unusual for it to occur,” he said. Jordan testified Carter had defensive bruises on her arms, numerous abrasions and bruising.  She had been raped, beaten, and anally raped prior to her death from asphyxiation. A wash cloth had been shoved forcefully into her throat and a ligature tightened around her neck, according to Jordan.  Intact sperm retrieved from vaginal and rectal swabbing analyzed by DNA experts reportedly matches Gore’s DNA.

Gore is being retried in the case following an Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals ruling saying he should have been allowed to present evidence in his earlier trial demonstrating that, just because his was the only DNA found at the murder scene, does not mean he committed the crime.

Carter's body was found Dec. 8, 1982, in the garage apartment where she had lived exactly two months.

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