Scott Peterson's defense team has identified one or more "credible suspects" in the death of his pregnant wife.
Attorneys would not say who the suspects are, or what the defense theory is regarding the disappearance of Laci Peterson, 27, on Christmas Eve. But the evidence points away from two men arrested for burglarizing a house across the street from Scott and Laci Peterson's Modesto home, a source close to the defense said Wednesday.
Laci Peterson's body and that of her unborn son were found last month along the eastern shoreline of the San Francisco Bay. Police arrested Scott Peterson on two counts of murder; he faces the death penalty if convicted.
Also Wednesday, a source close to the investigation said that two Berkeley city employees who were working at the Berkeley marina on Dec. 24 may be witnesses in the case.
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Police reports indicate the two employees saw someone who matched Scott Peterson's description back a boat into a pylon at the Berkeley Marina on Dec. 24, the source said. When the employees went to assist the man, he refused help.
Peterson told police he last saw his wife about 9:30 a.m. as she prepared to walk the family's golden retriever in East La Loma Park and he left on a fishing trip to the Berkeley Marina.
An employee at the marina said Wednesday that the marina's administrative office was closed on Dec. 24 but a reduced crew of dock maintenance workers and groundskeepers was on duty.
The employee said staff had been instructed to direct all questions to the Berkeley city manager's office or city attorney. Arrietta Chakos, chief of staff for the city manager, said she could not confirm the report that city employees had seen someone matching Peterson's description.
But Chakos said officials have asked staff who are involved in any pending investigation to cooperate with authorities.
Chief Deputy District Attorney John Goold would not comment on whether the two men who pleaded guilty to charges related to the burglary at a home in the Petersons' neighborhood would be called to testify.
Police arrested burglary suspects Steven Wayne Todd, 36, and Donald Glenn Pearce, 44, on Jan. 2 after receiving an anonymous tip, according to police documents.
Police listed the time of the burglary on Covena Avenue in the La Loma neighborhood as 6:30 a.m. Dec. 26. Attorneys for both sides refused to say whether there was evidence Todd and Pearce were in the neighborhood before that.
Both men were charged with two felony burglary counts. Pearce pleaded no contest in February to a reduced charge of receiving stolen property. He was sentenced to 180 days in jail.
Todd pleaded guilty to one burglary count in February and was sentenced to eight years, eight months in prison for that charge and two other burglary counts from a separate incident.
Also Wednesday, attorneys representing 11 journalists -- including four from The Bee -- filed requests to listen to conversations intercepted by investigators as they tapped Scott Peterson's phones.
Judge Wray Ladine authorized the wiretaps, Goold said.
A hearing in the matter was scheduled for June 6.
Journalists are protected by state and federal laws from revealing unpublished work. California law forbids prosecutors from compelling a journalist to reveal unpublished information "obtained in the process of gathering, receiving or processing information for communication to the public."
Rochelle Wilcox, an attorney representing journalists from The Bee, NBC and ABC said that reporters were concerned their conversations could be used by prosecutors.
Goold said his office won't contest the motions for journalists to review their intercepted calls.
A court official said the original recordings from the wiretaps are under seal at the court.
Bee staff writer John Coté can be reached at 578-2394 or firstname.lastname@example.org.