During opening statements in the Samson murder trial on Tuesday, the prosecution called Oct. 29, 1996 “a very dark day.”
That was the day the district attorney said James Antony Daveggio, 41, and, his girlfriend, Michelle Lyn Michaud, 43, met and began calculating with precision and strategy how to assault, humiliate and take pleasure in their victims’ pain and death.
In the murder of Vanessa Lei Samson, a 22-year-old community college student, Alameda County District Attorney Angela Backers said, “each member played an indispensable role.”
Backers spoke from a podium facing the jury. She soberly presented all details, listing each heinous act the couple allegedly committed.
Daveggio and Michaud are on trial at the Superior Court in Oakland for allegedly torturing, raping, killing then deserting the body of a Pleasanton woman near a Sierra highway. If convicted, they could get the death penalty.