Investigator: suspect appeared nervous days after girl vanished

Wednesday June 12, 2002

SAN DIEGO – The man accused of killing Danielle van Dam appeared nervous when he met with a police investigator two days after the 7-year-old girl vanished from her bedroom, the detective said Tuesday. 

“I noticed that he was sweating profusely from under his arms,” San Diego police Detective Johnny Keene testified in the trial of David Westerfield. 

Keene described the interview on Westerfield’s front porch, two doors from the van Dam home, on a cool Monday morning in early February. 

Westerfield told the investigator about his brief encounter with Danielle’s mother, Brenda van Dam, at a neighborhood bar on Feb. 1, the night of the girl’s disappearance. 

Westerfield, 50, is charged with murder, kidnapping and possession of child pornography. He could face the death penalty if he’s convicted.