Alaska State Trooper Ryan Anderson illustrates how Duilio Antonio “Tony” Rosales’ boots were arranged when Anderson found Rosales deceased at an Excursion Inlet cabin in 2016. Anderson is a witness in the trial of Mark De Simone, who is accused of shooting and killing Rosales. (Alex McCarthy | Juneau Empire)

Alaska State Trooper Ryan Anderson illustrates how Duilio Antonio “Tony” Rosales’ boots were arranged when Anderson found Rosales deceased at an Excursion Inlet cabin in 2016. Anderson is a witness in the trial of Mark De Simone, who is accused of shooting and killing Rosales. (Alex McCarthy | Juneau Empire)

As prosecution wraps up case, motive still unclear in 2016 shooting death

The prosecution wrapped up its case Friday against Mark De Simone, a former Arizona legislator accused of killing Juneau jeweler Duilio Antonio “Tony” Rosales on a hunting trip at Excursion Inlet in 2016.

Judge Philip Pallenberg told the jury Friday that the case might go to the jury as soon as this coming Wednesday. It’s up to the jury to rule on whether De Simone intentionally killed Rosales or if it was some kind of accident.

The lead investigator on the case, Alaska State Trooper Ryan Anderson, testified Friday and gave a look into how a massive amount of interviews and research still left the question of a motive unanswered.

[Find more details from the trial on our live blog]

During cross-examination from Assistant Public Defender Deborah Macaulay on Friday, Anderson said he interviewed more than a dozen people and looked through De Simone’s and Rosales’ cellphones. The phones, Anderson said, produced extensive records of text messages, emails and more, but didn’t provide much insight into how well the two men knew each other.

Macaulay ran down a list of possible conflicts, asking if Anderson had found any evidence of racial bias, debts between the men, shared accounts, one man lying to another and other situations.

“Not that I could find,” Anderson answered over and over.

Bill Young — the former owner of the Jewel Box in downtown Juneau where Rosales was a jeweler — testified this past Monday that De Simone was doing some work for him at the store in early 2016. Young and De Simone were old friends, and De Simone had just moved back to Juneau after living there during the 1980s, Young said while under direct examination from Assistant District Attorney Amy Paige.

De Simone was looking for work, Young testified, so Young gave him some maintenance work to do on the store. They would have seen each other and known each other during that time, Young said, but he said he had never seen any reason to think there was a conflict.

Under cross-examination, Young said he was “99 percent certain” there was no conflict between the two men that he saw, and said he didn’t see anything during the few days they were at Excursion Inlet to suggest there was anything negative between the two.

Looking back at opening statements

Anderson was the final of 16 witnesses who took the stand this past week as Paige built her case. The witnesses included law enforcement personnel, members of the hunting party, Rosales’ widow Maria Gonzalez, neighbors in Excursion Inlet and various forensic specialists.

In her opening statement, Paige said she was looking to illustrate two main points. One was that the shooting of Rosales was deliberate, because the gun that fired the fatal shots is a single-action revolver, as multiple witnesses have stated.

Debra Gillis, a forensic firearm and tool marks examiner for the Alaska Scientific Crime Detection Laboratory in Anchorage, said in court Thursday that a single-action revolver requires a person to cock the hammer and pull the trigger for each shot.

Paige’s second argument, as she said in her opening statement, is that De Simone’s demeanor changed when he learned Rosales was coming on the hunting trip. This point rests heavily on the testimony of fellow hunter Sam Bradshaw, who testified under direct examination that he saw De Simone become “depressed” and “moody” once he learned Rosales would be joining the hunting party.

Macaulay has been critical of a different part of Bradshaw’s testimony. Bradshaw testified that he heard De Simone say he was “f—-ing around” and shot Rosales, and Bradshaw said he called Anderson about a month after the shooting to report that. He said he didn’t remember it when law enforcement personnel were interviewing him, but that it came to him a few weeks later.

During cross-examination Friday, Anderson said he had no memory or record of Bradshaw making that phone call to him.

Macaulay will make her case starting Monday morning. During her opening statement and throughout the trial, Macaulay said she didn’t dispute the fact that “Mr. Rosales was hit two times by a gun that went off that my client was holding.” Without disclosing much more, Macaulay said her case will dispute the prosecution’s version of the “how and why” in the shooting.

She will call gun experts, she said, including Chad Kendrick from Taku Tactical in town who will put on a firearm demonstration for the jury. With the jury absent Thursday, Kendrick gave Macaulay, Paige and Pallenberg a preview of the demonstration he will put on.

He loaded a revolver — which works the same as the revolver in the case but is a different make and model — with silicon bullets. When he cocked the hammer and pulled the trigger, the gun made a click but did not fire. It’s not yet clear how Macaulay will use this demonstration to support her case.

Macaulay has also not said whether De Simone will take the stand. De Simone wore a blue dress shirt and a tie in court Friday, seated between Macaulay and Markus Bressler, an investigator for the Alaska Public Defender Agency. De Simone hasn’t spoken during the trial, either in front of the jury or while the jury is away.


• Contact reporter Alex McCarthy at 523-2271 or amccarthy@juneauempire.com. Follow him on Twitter at @akmccarthy.


Mark De Simone watches during his trial in Juneau Superior Court on Monday, April 30, 2018. De Simone is accused of killing Duilio Antonio “Tony” Rosales during a hunting trip in Excursion Inlet in 2016. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

Mark De Simone watches during his trial in Juneau Superior Court on Monday, April 30, 2018. De Simone is accused of killing Duilio Antonio “Tony” Rosales during a hunting trip in Excursion Inlet in 2016. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

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