When the phone rang shortly after midnight on Aug. 3, 2006, Kathy Wone didn't immediately pick up. The phone rang a second time, rousing Wone from bed.
One of Wone's friends, Joseph Price, was on the other end. There was noise in the background, Kathy Wone recalled today, testifying in D.C. Superior Court on the second day of trial in the government's conspiracy case against Price, Zaborsky and their roommate Dylan Ward.
Price had urgent news and told Wone to go to George Washington University Hospital, Kathy Wone said. Wone’s husband, Robert, had been stabbed.
Wone took a cab from her home in Virginia to the hospital, declining a ride from Price. On the ride, Wone recalled today, she was consumed by thoughts about where exactly her husband was stabbed and what he was doing outside walking late at night. Is Robert Wone going to be paralyzed? Can the Wones make their Virginia home accessible for a wheelchair? Her mind raced.
By the time Kathy Wone arrived, her husband was already dead.
She would soon learn that Wone was not outside but in the home of Price and his partner, Victor Zaborsky.
Kathy Wone was the government’s first witness, and her testimony concluded this afternoon in the courtroom of Judge Lynn Leibovitz. Price, Zaborsky and Ward are charged with conspiracy, evidence tampering and obstruction for their alleged effort to cover up Wone's murder.
Kathy Wone recalled several conversations she had in the presence of Price, Zaborsky and Ward in the days and years following the murder, which remains unsolved. Just days after the homicide, when Price described hearing the sound of Wone being stabbed—the “uh,” “uh,” “uh,”—Kathy Wone told him to stop.
Wone said in court today she felt as if she had opened a book to its most terrifying page.
In November 2007, Price and Kathy Wone met for lunch. Price talked about his frustration with the police investigation. He complained that the police were not following up with what Price described as a crack house across the street from his home on Swann Street near Dupont Circle in Northwest Washington.
In court, Kathy Wone detailed her husband’s sleep habits, among other things. Robert Wone was found on top of a comforter, pulled down at a 45 degree angle, in the guest bedroom of Price and Zaborsky’s house. Wone said her husband didn’t typically sleep on top of a comforter.
During cross-examination, the defense lawyers—Thomas Connolly, Bernard Grimm and David Schertler—explored the relationship among Wone, Price, Zaborsky and Ward. The lawyers questions were geared to show that Price, Zaborsky and Ward were grieving, too, after the Wone murder.
Connolly told Wone that he is "very, very sorry for your loss" just before he ended his questioning.