Newscaster Sam Donaldson, the first witness in the trial of a teenager charged with murdering his family on the journalist’s ranch, on Tuesday recounted his discovery of the crime scene.
Cody Posey, 16, is accused of shooting his father, his stepmother and his 13-year-old stepsister in July 2004. The father was Donaldson’s ranch foreman.
The boy told investigators he killed his family because his stepmother sexually abused him and his father hit him, according to a videotape played Tuesday, the trial’s first day.
During his testimony, Donaldson told of finding blood at a house on his Hondo Valley ranch.
When he returned from a trip, he found on the porch “a large reddish dry splotch which clearly was blood,” he testified. He found a similar spot on the kitchen floor and blood in the laundry room.
He called the sheriff’s office and said, “I cannot find my ranch manager, but I found a great deal of congealed blood,” he testified.
On the videotape, Posey, then 14, told investigators that his father, Delbert Posey, often hit him and that he “couldn’t take it anymore.”
The boy also had sex with his stepmother, Tryone Posey, who “would grab my head and put it on her breast,” he said on the tape.
He shot his stepsister, Mary Lee Schmid, so she wouldn’t tell about the killings, according to the tape.
The bodies were found in a shallow grave near the house. The boy was arrested two days after the killings.
Cody Posey is being tried in children’s court but could be subject to adult penalties. He is also charged with four counts of tampering with evidence.
An adult sentence would carry up to 30 years in prison for each murder count and three years for each evidence-tampering charge. If convicted as a juvenile, he could be held in state custody until he turns 21.