Our reporter Doug Donovan is sending updates from the coutroom throughout the corruption trial of Mayor Sheila Dixon.
Mayor Dixon's trial got off to a stunning second week today when developer Patrick Turner testified that Dixon asked him to donate gift cards to a city hall charity for the needy. Prosecutors have shown that Dixon spent the cards for personal use.
Turner's memory was vague but he said whomever dropped the cards off at the then-council president's office put them in an envelope with Dixon's name on it. Turner said he did not put his name on the cards.
Dixon's attorneys have argued that Dixon thought the cards were a personal gift from another developer, which is why she spent them.
As damaging as Turner's testimony appeared to be, his time on the stand provided some of the best comic relief. Turner had to borrow Dixon attorny Dale Kelberman's eyeglasses to read ducuments detailing phone calls between Dixon and Turner.
Dixon lawyers have said that Dixon never thanked Turner for the cards because she believed they were from her former boyfriend, Ronald Libscomb.
Turner testified she did not thank him, even at a surprise birthday party for Turner's wife at Charleston restaurant.
In Decemer, 2006, Dixon called Turner again while he was in the Cayman Islands about the holiday gift cards. Turner then called his business partner Glenn Charlow to buy cards and deliver to city hall.
Was this a personal gift to Dixon, prosecutor Shelly Glenn asked.
"No," Turner said.
Who did he intend the gifts for?
"Christmas gifts for children," he said.