Scott Peterson’s preliminary hearing concluded Tuesday with testimony from Modesto police Detective Jon Buehler about a Jan. 6 phone call secretly recorded by Peterson’s girlfriend, Amber Frey, at the request of police. Laci Peterson was reported missing Dec. 24, two weeks after Scott Peterson told Frey he was a widower.
THE FOLLOWING are excerpts from a transcript of the 23-minute call entered into evidence Tuesday:
Scott Peterson: I am so sorry I hurt you in this way. ... It’s the worst thing. I’m sorry, Amber. I’ll just tell you.
Amber Frey: OK.
Peterson: Uh, you haven’t been watching the news, obviously?
Peterson: I have lied to you. ... I haven’t been traveling.
(He tells her he’s been in Modesto looking for his wife, Laci).
Frey: You told me that you had lost your wife. What was that about?
Peterson: She ... she’s alive.
Frey: Where? She’s alive? Where?
Peterson: In Modesto. ... The media has been telling everyone that I had something to do with her disappearance. So the past two weeks I’ve been hunted by the media. ... You deserve so much better.
Frey: I deserve to understand an explanation of why you told me you lost your wife and this was the first holidays you’d spend without her. That was Dec. 9 you told me this and now all of a sudden your wife’s missing. Are you kidding me?
(Peterson stammers and says he can’t explain it now. He repeatedly says he needs to protect “all of us.”)
Frey: So where is she?
Peterson: That’s what we are trying to find out. ... I’m so sorry. You should be so angry at me and, God, I hope you are.
Frey: You sat here (Dec. 9) in front of me and cried and broke down. I sat here and held your hand, Scott, and comforted you and you were lying to me.
Peterson: If you think I had something to do with her disappearance ... er, it, that is so wrong.
Peterson: I never cheated on you.
Frey: Ha, ha, ha.
Peterson: I never did.
Frey: You’re married. How do you figure you never cheated on me? Explain that one to me?
(Peterson says he can’t explain it to her at this time, a refrain throughout the conversation).
Frey: How did you lose her then before she was lost? Explain that.
Peterson: There’s different kinds of loss.
Frey: Then explain your loss.
Peterson: I can’t.
Frey: How would you explain your baby to me?
Peterson: Sweetie, you don’t know everything.
(He refuses to tell her if he’s the father of the child Laci was carrying).
Peterson: I want to tell you everything but I can’t.
Frey: Why should I not go to the police with this?
Peterson: It’s your decision.
Peterson: Of course.
Frey: What stopped you from telling me this?
Peterson: It was probably just weakness and hoping that I could hold onto you.
Frey: Just a weakness and ... holding onto me?
Peterson: Longing to hold on to you.
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