WIND POINT – Jurors heard a chilling 911 call from murder victim Jonathan Kwiatkowski on Tuesday during the first day in the trial of Sean Forester-Hoare, who is facing first-degree murder charges.
The call occurred during a physical confrontation involving his parents, Lori and Tim, and his brother Corey fighting Forester-Hoare at their home in the 5300 block of Valley Trail Drive at 2:41 a.m. April 4, 2011. Lori Kwiatkowski also gave a dramatic testimony as she talked about the details surrounding her son's death.
Jonathan Kwiatkowski was stabbed in the neck with a five-inch knife during the altercation. Forester-Hoare faces possible life in prison.
In defense attorney Jonathan LaVoy's opening statement, he said Forester-Hoare had the knife because just prior to the altercation he had been cutting up boxes to take out to the garbage. He was standing at the end of his driveway smoking a cigarette when Jonathan drove by Forester-Hoare and narrowly missed hitting him with the car he was driving.
Racine County District Attorney Rich Chiapete warned the jury not to be fooled by attempts by the defense to muddy the water by confusing the evidence.
"I'm going to be hitting you with this theme over and over again, and it's going to be crystal clear to you ... the truth is the truth here. Lies lead to lies. And one thing you are going to hear ... is deny, deny, deny, lie, lie, lie," Chiapete said.
According to the testimony Tuesday, following the near-miss with the car Jonathan went into his house and woke his parents, Lori and Tim Kwiatkowski. LaVoy described a scene in which Lori and Tim are arguing with Forester-Hoare over Jonathan's driving.
"They acknowledged that they said mean things to Forester-Hoare too, this was not a one-way street where they were just taking it from Mr. Forester-Hoare," he said.
LaVoy pointed out that Tim told police he wasn't sure whether Forester-Hoare had pushed or hit Lori first, but Tim did tell police he struck him in the head and that he wanted to "diffuse the situation."
"But a punch to the head did not diffuse the situation," LaVoy said. "You'll hear on the 911 call that this is when all of the yelling starts happening."
During the altercation, Jonathan was still on the phone with the dispatcher when he saw that his parents were physically fighting Forester-Hoare, who had struck Lori and Tim, according to Lori.
On the 911 call, the dispatcher tells Jonathan to get everyone in the house as Forester-Hoare is sitting on Tim beating him; Lori tells Jonathan "we have to get him off daddy first."
All four Kwiatkowski family members allegedly wrestle with Forester-Hoare.
"He was kicked, he was hurt, injuries are on his body," LaVoy said of his client. "He felt like he was injured at this point. And he remembers his knife is right there. And while the shirt is pulled over his head, he grabs the knife and tries to get out of there."
Jonathan is stabbed in the throat with a knife with the phone in his hand. A gasp can be heard at that moment on the 911 call, but Jonathan manages to go inside the house. Lori said in her testimony that there was blood everywhere. She didn’t realize that Jonathan was stabbed until two officers with the Wind Point Police Department arrived and began CPR.
"There was motion and that was telling me that he was still hearing me, and that's when I realized there was a hole in his neck, it was a circle," she said. "So I put my finger on it thinking that that was helping him breathe. And then the paramedics came and they made me go. And that was pretty much the end of my boy."
Forester-Hoare went home, hid the knife in his basement, put his clothes in the washer and went to bed until detectives woke him up the next morning. He had his tooth chipped, and was cut on the stomach.
While being interviewed by detectives with the Racine County Sheriff's Department, Forester-Hoare said he was 120 percent sure that he didn't stab Jonathan with a knife and tried to blame his neighbor six times. Forester-Hoare then told detectives he didn't stab Kwiatkowski with a knife, but rather with keys, Chiapete said.
"You can't provoke an attack and claim it was self-defense," he told the jury.
LaVoy acknowledged that Forester-Hoare did "deny, deny, deny, lie, lie, lie... it's true..." but Forester-Hoare was justified because it was a two-way fight where all four family members had ganged up on him.
Patch will continue to follow the trial, which is expected to last until Friday.
*The audio tape of the 911 call was taken down at the request of the family.