In June, when a D.C. judge begrudgingly acquitted the three Dupont Circle men Katherine Wone believes responsible for the bloody slaying of her husband, Robert Wone, the widow bolted from her seat to leave the courtroom.
As she bulldozed her way through a throng of reporters and disappeared without making a statement or answering any questions, it was nevertheless understood that she’d be back. The small and determined woman had already filed a $20 million wrongful death suit against the now-former murder conspiracy suspects, Joseph Price, Dylan Ward, and Victor Zaborsky. Robert Wone, a D.C. attorney, was spending the night at the townhouse of the gay threesome in August 2006 when someone plunged a sharp kitchen knife into his torso three times for unknown reasons.
The housemates (all upper-class success stories) claim not to know anything. Their visitor came over to crash after a late night at work and was dead sometime later. It must have been an intruder, they told police.
Preparing for the the civil trial, Wone’s lawyers apparently hope 800 e-mails will help prove that story false. They’ve submitted a motion to compel the release of e-mails sent or received by Price, who criminal prosecutors portrayed as being at the center of a creepy family unit willing to do anything to protect itself. Including cover-up a stabbing.
Price, once a lawyer at top law firm Arent Fox, used his work e-mail to communicate with Zabrosky and Ward around the time of the murder and after. For instance, according to recent filings, Price and Zaborsky shared 11 e-mails the month Wone ended up dead on a pull-out couch in their guest room.
Price’s lawyers have claimed the correspondence is privileged. But Wone’s attorney’s are arguing, among other things, that “Arent Fox’s usage policy warns data exchanged over the firms network belongs to the firm and is ‘subject to subpoena and disclosure in a legal proceeding.'”
Doug Johnson, of the website WhoMurderedRobertWone.com, is predicting that even if the e-mails are turned over, there won’t be a smoking gun in Price’s communications. But, he says, the emails may point to “Who knew what or who suspected what.”
The trial is scheduled to begin in October.
*Photo by Darrow Montgomery