Ryan Stensaker Trial: Day 2

MINOT (KMOT-TV) Detectives and police officers testified in the Ryan Stensaker murder trial today.

Eight people testified before the jury of 12 today. Many were law enforcement officials who investigated the case.

People with close connections to the Stensaker family also shared with the jury some of the events leading up to Jack Sjol's untimely death.

The prosecution had witnesses who worked at the scene walk them through the discovery of weapons, ammunition, and ID cards in the Stensaker residence and underneath Ryan Stensaker's mattress.

Prosecution: "What are we looking at here?"

Special Agent Casey Miller (State Bureau of Criminal Investigation): "That was the 300 Savage long rifle that was on top of the box spring."

A key testimony from the day involved Candice Koltermann, an acquaintance of the Stensaker family who lived in their home at the time of Jack Sjol's disappearance.

Koltermann said that she came home from work one day, she found Ryan taking what looked like a brown hunting rifle out of a storage room under the stairs.

Prosecution: "Do you know where the firearm would have been taken from?"

Koltermann: "I imagine the locker because at the time I heard metal, like a clinging, and then afterwards when I looked in there, the locker was open and there were other guns in there."

Koltermann told the court that Stensaker went upstairs to his room. She waited for him downstairs, before growing impatient and heading upstairs to take a shower. That's when she walked by his bedroom.

Prosecution: "What did you see Mr. Stensaker doing?"

Koltermann: "He was playing with the gun, clicking the lever, or the trigger, over and over again, staring off into space."

The defense argued that no one can tie the weapons to the murder. During the cross examination, the defense challenged Koltermann on her memory of Stensaker's actions that night.

Defense: "How many times did he click it?"

Koltermann: "I couldn't give you a time because I didn't sit there and count."

Defense: "more than once?"

Koltermann: "Yes, more than once."

Later in the cross-examination...

Defense: "When you looked in the room, did you see the gun?"

Koltermann: "Yep, in his hands."

Defense: "You saw Ryan with the gun?"

Koltermann: "yep."

Later in the cross-examination...

Defense: "Is it possible you didn't tell 'em about the rifle 'til, until you were re-interviewed shortly before you got ready for trial?"

Koltermann: "I don't know I basically answered whatever questions they told me, and whatever information I had when they asked me I told it to them."

The prosecution ended the day by questioning a dentist who identified the crown found at the scene as that of Jack Sjol's.

The trial continues Monday morning.