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FBI Surveillance Expert Testifies in Ernie Scherer III Murder Trial

Written by:
C Costigan
Published on:
Feb/03/2011
Ernie Scherer III Murder Trial

An FBI examiner took to the stand in the murder trial of Ernie Scherer III, who is accused of brutally murdering his parents - Ernest Scherer Jr. and Charlene Abendroth – in their Castlewood Country Club, California home. 

Prosecutors claim that Scherer III was in deep debt, mostly from his gambling activities, and killed his parents to receive their million dollar plus inheritance.  They contend that Scherer III made the March 2008 murder scene appear like a home invasion.

George Skaluba examined footage of video surveillance at the Scherer home the night when the murders were believed to have taken place.  That footage showed a red Corvette prosecutors allege was driven by the defendant. Skaluba noted that there were similarities between the car videotaped and that owned by Scherer III.  The detail, however, was lacking to some extent.

“Surveillance cameras are typically set up to ward off vandalism and are set up to capture the most area possible,” he said.  “If you set up a camera to target specific points of interest there would be more detail available.”

As an example, the license plate was obscured by “overexposure”.  Custom parts and any structural damage to the automobile could not be determined either. 

Skaluba is a 25-year-old veteran of the Federal Bureau of Investigation who acted as an expert witness in the Rodney King beating trail. 

The Alameda County Sheriff’s Department initially reached out to Gambling911.com in an attempt to publicize the murders nationally as a means of gathering witnesses.  Scherer III regularly traveled across country to participate in poker tournaments. 

The trial is expected to continue through March.

- Christopher Costigan, Gambling911.com Publisher

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