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Presumed Guilty

Presumed Guilty

3.3 19
by Matt Dalton, Bonnie Hearn Hill (With)

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No one knows the story behind the sensational headlines of the Scott Peterson murder trial better than defense attorney Matt Dalton. For six straight months after Peterson's arrest, Dalton was the defense's only full-time investigative attorney on the case. During that time, he lived in Modesto and investigated every element of the case, interviewing scores of


No one knows the story behind the sensational headlines of the Scott Peterson murder trial better than defense attorney Matt Dalton. For six straight months after Peterson's arrest, Dalton was the defense's only full-time investigative attorney on the case. During that time, he lived in Modesto and investigated every element of the case, interviewing scores of witnesses, reviewing more than 35,000 pages of police documents, and meeting almost daily with Scott Peterson in jail.

What he has uncovered will astound even the most informed observers of the Laci Peterson murder case and challenge the most deeply held beliefs about what really happened to Laci Peterson on Christmas Eve, 2002.

This is the first book to go inside the Peterson defense team, and the only book to detail all the evidence that the jury did not hear -- evidence that might have led to Scott Peterson's acquittal, and that will surely play a crucial part in his pending appeals.

Among the revelations in Presumed Guilty:

• Reports from numerous witnesses who saw Laci Peterson alive and well the morning of December 24, after the police claim Scott Peterson had already killed her; none of them testified at trial

• The story of another woman, eight months pregnant, who was harassed by two men the morning of December 24 only five blocks from the Peterson home

• The burglary that reportedly occurred directly across the street from the Peterson home on the morning of December 24, and the confessed burglars' questionable claims that the burglary happened days later

• Previously unreported details of the autopsy reports on Laci Peterson and her son, which cast strong doubts on key elements of the prosecution's case

• The disappearances of six pregnant women, in addition to Laci, reported missing and presumed dead within eighty miles of Modesto between 1999 and 2002

Compelling, provocative, disturbing, Presumed Guilty is the fascinating story of one lawyer's relentless efforts to find the truth behind one of the most complex and notorious murder cases in American history.

Product Details

Atria Books
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.60(d)

Meet the Author

Matt Dalton spent thirteen years as a prosecutor involved in all aspects of criminal litigation with the Long Beach, California City Prosecutor and the Los Angeles County District Attorney. In 2003, he left the DA's office and joined the firm of Geragos & Geragos. Weeks later he met with his first client: accused murderer Scott Peterson. Matt Dalton earned degrees from UCLA and Loyola Law School and, while working as a prosecutor, received commendations for outstanding contributions to domestic violence prosecutions. He is currently in private practice in Los Angeles.

Bonnie Hearn Hill is a California-based writer and a former newspaper editor.

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Presumed Guilty: What the Jury Never Knew About Laci Peterson's Murder and Why Scott Peterson Should Not Be on Death Row 3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 19 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I would suggest that you choose a different book or just simply passing up on this one. There is nothing concrete in it only a bunch of 'what ifs' and 'could of beens' and no direct conversations between the author and Scott Peterson. Everything in it is what we have already heard before--absolutely nothing new. I really thought it would should cracks in the case and prove somehow that Scott could possibily be innocent and somehow because of the media frenzy he was sentenced to death. But just the opposite occured...now I really see that only Scott Peterson could have killed Laci and dumped her body in the Bay. It was a waste of my money and my time. I would suggest that Barnes&Noble readers try a different book. This one will be a huge disappointment.
Guest More than 1 year ago
horrible book...not based on any evidence..full of 'what ifs'! if you want a book that completely goes into detail get Catherine Crier's A DEADLY GAME!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Dalton was clearly close to Scott Peterson, having spent many hours with Peterson behind bars. I have one word for Dalton, 'Privilege'! I hope Dalton had the forsight to get his client to sign a waiver before writing this book. I wonder what Geragos has to say about all of this. That said, I'm not seeing too many new revelations in this book. If you want the real deal, pick up Catherine Crier's 'A Deadly Game.' Crier's book is by far the best book written on the Peterson case to date.
Jaynel More than 1 year ago
I read Sharon Rocha's book "For Lace" first and then read this book "Presumed Guilty." Anyone reading both of them will tell you that Presumed Guilty was written to make a quick dollar for the author, a minor player in this saga and of no help, obviously, to Scott Peterson's defense. In fact, this author had so little sympathy for Sharon Rocha's tragic loss that he, on occasion, insulted her with no apology and made life difficult for her. Some of Mr. Dalton's theories were researched and found to have no bearing on Laci's death. For instance, the other pregnant women who had been murdered in previous years. The police suspected family members in all six. Sharon's book was stellar and worth the read and insight. This one is a loss.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I watched the trial, read all the articles, and I was really interested to see how the defense could possibly come up with anything resembling the truth. I was really disappointed by this book as it offers nothing of any value, beyond what was already presented in court.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book states absolutely NO FACTS .. just theories! I read it two times and still my opinion has not changed!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I live in Modesto and this book is a list of half-truths and innuendo. Don't waste your money. You can read the transcripts and get more truth from it
Guest More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed most of the book but on page 152...states that Amy had pizza with Scott and Laci and watched a movie. Didn't she testify that Scott invited her but she declined?
Guest More than 1 year ago
Are three words I would use to describe this book. I bought it yesterday and finished it this afternoon, it's an easy read written on an approximate 8th grade level. Although interesting, the Peterson case is presented in a pro-defence perspective with little new insight into the case. It promised to reveal never before released information but if you watched Court TV enough during the case you've heard it all before. Total hogwash. But, a must read for all those crazy ladies that have fallen in love with Scott in jail, its an organized, angled and very much reaching perspective that disputes Scott Peterson's obvious guilt in the murder of his lovely wife and innocent baby.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was very disturbing. I am still convinced that Scott killed his wife, but while reading this book, did experience doubts. It is hard to believe that the prosecution overlooked so many things that should have been checked because they were CONVINCED of Scott's guilt. Sometimes I do think our court system goes after the easiest targe target and just latches on!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book proves Scott Peterson is NOT guilty of the murder of his wife Laci. It is so very clear after reading this book that the guy got rail roaded.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I'm a law major who hopes to become a prosecutor in the near future, and I can honestly say that after reading and re-reading this book I don't feel comfortable with Scott Peterson being on Death Row. This book is very well written, and it list nothing but FACTS!!! A couple of opinions...but 99.9% of the book is based on facts. What happened to the brown van? Who pawned in Laci's watch? What about the eyewitnesses who clealy spotted Laci and her golden retreiver on Dec. 24th? The noose that was around baby Conner's neck was tied too tightly around his neck for it to have been debris like the prosecution asserted... For anyone who seeks justice and truth, read this book! S. Maxwell
Guest More than 1 year ago
A moving & personal account of a terrible tragedy, written by a heroic, bereaved mother. Scott Peterson, the convicted murderer of Laci & her unborn son, sits in prison, sentenced to death for this crime. This heart-breaking account of the life of her daughter, Laci, reveals Ms. Rocha to be a person of immense strength & caring, a shining beacon for us all. Ultimately, this is a book that uplifts one's spirit & gives great hope.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have spent much time watching and following this case over the past 3 years and find this book extemely useful in providing facts unreported by the media. Its nice to get a fresh look at evidence that hasn't had a negitive spin from newscasters.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you followed the trial of Scott Peterson, you have got to read this book. No other player, lawyer, writer, reporter covered this critical evidence. Very persuasive.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Persuasive evidence we never heard during the nonstop coverage of this case. What a shame that the sensational 24-hour cable news chatter never seriously considers an original, authentic source like Dalton. Fascinating.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was highly informative read, written by someone who believes a person is 'innocent until proven guilty'. Unlike Catherine Crier this author is more occupied with unveiling the truth instead of making up sensationalisms to produce a 'best seller'.