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IN THE MATTER OF

State of Florida
vs
Gary M. Hilton
Transcript of Depostion of

John Tabor
Volume I
On September 24, 2010

_______________________________________
Reported by Kimberly A. Stewart
Certified Court Reporter
___________________________________________

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IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF THE


SECOND JUDICIAL CIRCUIT, IN
AND FOR LEON COUNTY, FLORIDA
STATE OF FLORIDA,
Plaintiff,
vs.

SPN: 197149

GARY MICHAEL HILTON,


Defendant.
- - Deposition of JOHN TABOR,
Taken by Maria Ines Suber,
Before Kimberly A. Stewart,
Certified Court Reporter,
At the City of Duluth Public Safety Building,
Duluth, Georgia,
On Friday, September 24, 2010,
Beginning at 1:22 p.m. & ending at 2:22 p.m.
- - -

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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APPEARANCES OF COUNSEL

For the Plaintiff:

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No Appearance
For the Defendant:
MARIA INES SUBER
Office of the Public Defender
Suite 401
Leon County Courthouse
301 South Monroe Street
Tallahassee, FL 32301
850.606.1000

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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INDEX TO PROCEEDINGS

EXAMINATION INDEX

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3

JOHN TABOR

Examination by Ms. Suber

Certificate Page

(End of Index)

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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1

September 24, 2010

1:22 p.m.

(Whereupon the reporter provided a written

disclosure to all counsel pursuant to OCGA

9-11-28.)
MS. SUBER:

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7

please.

JOHN TABOR,

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being first duly sworn, was examined and


testified as follows:

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EXAMINATION

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BY MS. SUBER:

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Would you swear him in,

Would you please tell us your name for

the record?

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John Tabor.

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Where are you employed?

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I'm self-employed.

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What do you do for a living?

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I'm a construction contractor.

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Are you also a licensed attorney in

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Georgia?

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No, I'm not.

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My name is Ines Suber.

I'm a

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court-appointed attorney, and I have been

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appointed by the court to represent Gary Hilton.

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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And the reason I'm here is because

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your name surfaced in some documents that the

State provided to me, and I wanted to ask you some

questions.
Do you know Gary Hilton?

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6

I know who he is.

How do you know him?

He worked for my company.

How long ago did he work for your

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company?
A

Do you recollect?
Off and on from somewhere around 1997

to maybe 2007.

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at that time?

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period?

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Yes, sir.

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Well, I had the same business.

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And what kind of business did you have

At what time?

That entire ten-year

It was

a construction contracting company.

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Did you employ Mr. Hilton?

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Yes.

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Could you tell me how is it that he

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got to be employed by you?


A

He applied for a telemarketing

position, and he was hired to perform that duty.

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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Q

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2

And when he came to you, how did he

appear to you at that time when you hired him?

In what context?

His demeanor.

I mean, was he

well-dressed, well-kept when he applied?

Looked like a normal person.

Just like a normal person.

Was he

living in the area, or do you know where he was

living at?

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I don't know where he was living.

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And did he have any family, or do you

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At that time or --

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Yes, at the time that you first --

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know?

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when you first hired him.

Because am I to assume

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that's that when you first met him?

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That's correct.

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Do you know if he had local family or

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where he was staying at the time?

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conversation.

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employment, and that was it.

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I don't recall having any such


When I met him, it was simply about

And what kind of job did he do with

He was a telemarketer.

you?

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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telephone.
Q

And you provided him with the

telephone for him to use?

At that time, yes.

Was that part of like to facilitate

his job with you?

Yes.

Did you know where he was living at

night or where he was residing?

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No.

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No.

Did you ever have any

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conversations with him as to his private life or

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anything like that?

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private life.

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No.

I wasn't interested in his

Did you know at the time, for example,

whether or not he lived in a storage building?


A

I just told you that I don't know

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anything about where he was staying at the time I

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hired him.

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Did you eventually find out where he

was staying?

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Not that I recall, no.

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So you have no recollection as to

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where he was actually residing when he first

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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started with you?

No.

Did he put any requirements on the --

for him to be able to work with you?


A

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And what kind of dog are we talking

about?
(Whereupon Ms. Lori entered the deposition

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room.)

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(Whereupon off-the-record discussions

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ensued.)
MS. SUBER:

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Do you mind moving to the

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other room to see if the other lawyers are going

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to appear by phone?
THE WITNESS:

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I don't care.

I just

told you that I'll be leaving at 2:00.


MS. SUBER:

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Well, the depo didn't say

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any time, and I'm a court-appointed lawyer that

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has to -THE WITNESS:

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I don't care.

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noticed my wife to be here at 2:00.

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I'm concerned -MS. SUBER:

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think that's the only thing I can think of.

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He needed to keep his dog with him.

Okay.

You've

So as far as

Let's continue

because --

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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Q

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So the requirement was that he was --

that he should be able to keep his dog?


A

I remember him making that request.

And I didn't have any problem accommodating that,

yes.

Was he a dependable employee?

To the best of my recollection, yes.

And during the period of time that he

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worked with you, how many years?

You kept him for

like about ten years; right?

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period.

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I said off and on for about a ten-year

So the times that he was off, do you

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know where -- was that a vacation, or was he being

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paid as a regular employee, or what was the

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situation?

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I don't know where he would go when he

would leave.
Q

Did you ever pick him up in the woods

somewhere to help him out?


A

There was a time many years after he

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was first hired, and I can't tell you what year it

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was, but he called me and said that he had a

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broken down vehicle somewhere in the North Georgia

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mountains and he needed help getting out.

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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did help him get out, yes.


Q

But you don't recollect how long he

had worked for you when that occurred?


A

I would guess five years, four or

five, six years.


Q

It had been a while.

And during the time that he worked

with you, did you have any cause to alarm you that

he was a dangerous person that you had been

employing there or anything like that?

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No.

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Did he cause any problems with your

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other employees that you have?

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No, not really.

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Did you ever -- what do you mean not

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really?

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didn't talk, or did he get into arguments?

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Did he get along with them, or he just

I wasn't there to witness most of the

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activity that went on in that office, but over

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that period of time there were many people that

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worked there.

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particularly social and not necessarily wanting to

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interact with others.

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I just don't recall him being

I take it that your relationship with

him was just one of employer/employee?


A

Correct.

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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Q

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You never socialize or anything of

that nature?

Absolutely not.

I am aware of some of the conversation

that you had with the Georgia Bureau of

Investigation where there was some other

insinuations that were posed to you.

aware of that, indicating that you guys perhaps

had a different relationship other than

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employer/employee?

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questions?

Are you

Do you recollect those

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Questions from whom?

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From the Investigator Howard, with

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Special Agent Howard when he talked to you.

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Why don't you be specific.

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How many times have you talked to the

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police?

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I don't know.

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Could you give me an estimate of how

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Dozens.

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Dozens.

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I have no idea.

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They didn't ask you?

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Many times.

many?

Were they all tape-recorded?

They didn't say,

I'm going to record your conversations or anything

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State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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like that?

Maybe on some occasions.

Do you recollect them coming to you

and saying that Mr. Hilton was making some

accusations or some allegations that you guys were

more than just employer and employee?

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I remember them mentioning that at

some point.

Okay.

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I don't think they even thought it was

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credible, but they did mention that, yes.


Q

But you don't know, you have not seen

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any statements actually made by -- you have not

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heard Mr. Hilton actually saying that; right?

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Have you?

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I don't understand your question.

You're asking me, have I heard Hilton -Q

Yes.

Him actually saying those

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allegations that they were telling you with your

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own ears.

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My own ears from Hilton's voice?

How would that be possible?


Q

No.

He was incarcerated.

I was just asking because oftentimes

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when police, would you agree, the police might

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want to make allegations to try to get to

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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something else, that they are fishing around?

I'm not here to speculate.

Did you feel that way when they were

questioning you, though?

No.

Now, there was a time -- and I'm not

here to even touch upon that because I represent

Mr. Hilton.

I heard of that was when the GBI made the

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I'm court-appointed.

The first time

allegations in the statements.


A

The GBI made allegations?

What

allegations did the GBI make?


Q

Well, the GBI told you that Mr. Hilton

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said certain things, and that's the first time

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that we have heard of that.

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touch upon that.

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told you, and we learned from them as well.

But I'm not here to

That is something that the GBI

Now, what I want to talk to you about,

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though, is that you appeared to have been an

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employer that really cared for Mr. Hilton's

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well-being.

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correct?

You help him work for ten years;

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Are you testifying --

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No.

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-- right now, or what is the question?

I'm asking.

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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Q

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Were you an employee that helped

Mr. Hilton through the ten years or so that he --

I was not an employee.

Were you the employer that helped

Mr. Hilton as an employee through the ten years?

Did you help him?


A

He did his job.

mean by did I help him.

paid him, and that was it.

I don't know what you

He did his job, and I

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And you helped him get his vehicle.

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I did offer him assistance on that one

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occasion, yes.
Q

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And if he didn't have money, you will

advance money for him on occasion?


A

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He worked on commissions.

It wasn't

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unusual for me to pay people, commissioned

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salespeople that worked for me in advance.

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was nothing unusual for me to do that for him or

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for anyone else.


Q

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That's what I wanted to

know.
Now, was there a time when Mr. Hilton

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Thank you.

That

started changing when he was employed with you?

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You need to be more specific.

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Was there a time when Mr. Hilton's

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State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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demeanor started to changing?


A

If you're referring to the period of

time that I've talked about repeatedly in the

press, the last year or so that he was working for

my company, yes.

that, yes.
Q

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Primarily that he had -- he just

Was it because -- was he sick, or what

excuse did he give you, or did he give you any?


A

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He gave excuses.

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illness.

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these are just his words.

He mentioned

He mentioned taking medications, but

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What change did you

simply wasn't doing his job as he had in the past.

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What did you see?

see in him?

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I've talked in some length about

Was there a period of time that he,

his behavior became like bizarre?


A

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Well, the one episode that I recall

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that I would consider bizarre is when he had

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informed me that he had extracted one of his own

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teeth.

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see him showing where he had removed his tooth.

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And I thought his behavior was a bit bizarre at

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that time.

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And I happened to be there physically to

Did you notice during that period of

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State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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time, and we're talking about one or two years,

that he was preoccupied with issues?


A

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I don't understand what you mean.

What issues?
Q

The world, the economy, the price of

gasoline, females, any issue in particular that he

was obsessing over?

No.

How would you describe his,

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Mr. Hilton's, from what -- if you know,

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relationship with his dog, Ranger?


A

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He seemed to care a great deal about

his dog.
Q

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I notice that in some of the answers

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that you gave to investigators when this case

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first came up that you indicated that when the dog

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die, he -- Mr. Hilton went into a depression

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episode.
A

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I don't remember using that exact

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term, but I somewhat remember that he was upset

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about it.
Q

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Do you remember him telling you or

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that he had -- where he had buried him and all

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that?

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Yes, I do remember that.

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State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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that was a bit Strange, but he told me he had

buried the dog somewhere on the property of Stone

Mountain.

And there was a time, though, that you

allowed him to stay in your business because when

you closed your business it was abandoned and you

allowed him to stay there; is that correct?

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Well, you said a bunch of things.

never abandoned my business.

I simply wasn't

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using that office as a telemarketing operation any

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longer.

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very little time in that particular building.

And when I ceased doing that, I spent

It is a -- it is a home that is

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commercially zoned.

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agreement to let him stay on the property.

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However, since I wasn't there and rarely went

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there, I didn't object to him being on the

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property simply because I thought it would be good

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to help someone keep an eye on the place.

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And there was never a formal

Did you go into the property to see

what kind of personal belongings he kept there?


A

No, I never went to go see what

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belongings he kept there.

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periodically, and other employees used the

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property for equipment storage, trailer storage,

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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that type of thing.


Q

Was Mr. Hilton an individual that was

clean and kept himself clean at all times?


A

I didn't see him at all times.

can't answer that question.


Q

When you saw Mr. Hilton before the

period of one or two, or the last one or two

years, did you see Mr. Hilton as taking care of

himself and keeping himself clean at least, the

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11

times that you saw him?


A

Nothing out of the ordinary.

He

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was -- acted like a normal person, so I don't know

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how else to answer your question.

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The reason why I'm asking the question

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is because it appears that you saw a change in

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Mr. Hilton, the way that he was keeping himself.

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Before, when he start -- was employed as when he

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started one or two years before, did you notice

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any change in the way he was keeping himself clean

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shaven or anything that was different?

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Not really, not other than what I told

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you about.

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last several years.

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Q
business?

I rarely saw him in person for the

Did you ever go into your place, your


And I didn't say that you abandoned the

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State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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business.

I meant to say that it was not being

used for the business, so it was like empty, for

the lack of a better word.


Did you ever go and look and -- one

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5

day and found there was a lot of filth, stuff,

stuff around?

Not particularly.

I mean, no, I don't

remember there being some episode where it was

suddenly filthy where before it had been clean.

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11

No, I don't.
Q

And the reason why is that's what some

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of the -- what I read in some of the reports was

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that the place was so filthy with dog hair and

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that you were even shocked.

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I think that is what I noticed more

after he had left as opposed to before.


Q

After he had left when?

During the

one or two the years of -- what period?


A

After he -- I guess this was the

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summer of 2007, when he had threatened me and

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basically parted ways.

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remember going through the office and noticing the

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outside area of the office was littered with

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debris and was left in quite a mess.

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It was after that that I

What happened between you and

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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Mr. Hilton that -- why is it that Mr. Hilton all

of a sudden started threatening you?

That's beyond my explanation.

I noticed that there was -- that he

was making some -- calling you and leaving voice

mails in your home.

we talking about?

your phone?

What kind of voice mails are


What messages was he leaving on

He left threatening voice mails

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demanding money.

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type of, type of messages.

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And either I paid him or else

Were you aware that Mr. Hilton was

taking or had been prescribed Ritalin?

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I believe he had told me that.

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Did you notice any change in his

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mental state after he told you that he was taking

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Ritalin?

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Here again, I can't pinpoint the time

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where he first told me he was taking that

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medication.

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speaking to him during that period of time and

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just noticing, just noticing rapid speech where he

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sounded more excitable than normal.

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I can think of.

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But I do have some recollection of

So that's all

Was it during the same period of time

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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that he started like making threats and demanding

money from you?


A

I think it was sometime later.

Like I

said, I can't tell you when he started or when he

told me he started taking these drugs versus the

time he first started -- the time he threatened

me, but I would imagine that a year had gone by,

give or take.

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And were you aware that the -- how

many milligrams of Ritalin he was taking?

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I have no idea.

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At one point you mentioned he was

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taking over 100 milligrams to the police.

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did you get that information from?

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17

Where

That must have been something he told

And what other type of maybe weird or

me.

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bizarre, other than threatening you and demanding

19

money from you, what other instance of bizarre

20

behavior do you know about him?

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22

Nothing that I haven't already

mentioned.

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Was he preoccupied with females?

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Preoccupied with them?

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No, I never

heard anything from him that would suggest he was

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

22
1

preoccupied with females, no.


Q

Did you ever hear him talking about

how females were like the end -- females were the

ones that brought the end of men and all that

stuff?

6
7
8
9

No.

I don't remember any conversation

about that.
Q

Do you remember during the time after

you started saying, that one or two years, in the

10

last one or two years he was changing, did you

11

have any conversations with him about the economy

12

or anything of that nature?

13

I don't recall.

I didn't speak to him

14

that much.

15

business-oriented.

16

things, but it wasn't as though I was carrying on

17

a conversation with him.

18

And, generally, when I did, it was


He would often ramble about

But you describe fast speech.

What

19

was he talking about on those times when he would

20

just call you and go fast?

21

subject --

What was the

22

Well --

23

-- matter?

24

-- normally, the only reason we would

25

have a conversation would be to discuss business,

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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1

what he's generated or what he's followed up with

and that type of thing.

nature of the call.

call simply to discuss the matters of the day

other than whatever business we needed to discuss.

So that would be the

There would never be a phone

And when I was talking about rambling

6
7

about things, that he would transition from

talking about business, in other words, justifying

the phone call and then he may go on and start

10

talking about something else.

11

Did you ever meet his mother?

12

No.

13

Did he ever say anything to you about

14

his mother or his childhood?


A

15

You know, over that ten-year period, I

16

have vague recollections that he -- I can't give

17

you any specific instances, but my recollection is

18

that he wasn't very happy or on good terms with

19

his mother and wasn't happy about his childhood,

20

but I can't give you any specifics.


Q

21

You also mentioned that there was one

22

time that Mr. Hilton become disillusioned, I

23

suppose, and that's my word, and that he had some

24

kind of like a list of people that he wanted to

25

kill?

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

24
1

Oh, yeah.

Yeah.

I remember him

telling me that he had a list of people that he

wanted to kill or would kill before he was going

to kill himself or something.

And did he mention who were those

people?

specifically.

often had confrontations in public parks with

I -- no, I don't know any names


But what I remember is that he

10

other dog owners, who would approach his dog and

11

instigate some sort of confrontation.

12

apparently, the best of my recollection is it

13

related to those type of incidents.

14

And,

And, apparently, did he actually

15

threaten to kill you during that time that he --

16

I'm talking about that time where he called you

17

and was asking for money and you gave him a $2,500

18

check with a note.

19

I'm going to kill you if you don't give it to me

20

or something like that?

21
22
23
24
25

You know, did he actually say

He made that clear, yes.

Yes, he made

that clear.
Q

But he never made any attempts to do

it, or did he?


A

I don't know.

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

25
1

He came and picked up the check?

There was an instance where he came to

pick up a check, yes.


Q

4
5

had listed as ransom?


A

6
7

10
11

There was a $2,500 check that I had

written ransom, yes, on the envelope.

8
9

And that was the $2,500 check that you

Why did you write the word ransom

Because I believe he was trying to

there?

extort money from me.

12

And what did he do with that check?

13

He tore that check up.

14

At your home?

15

Uh-huh (affirmative).

16

Was he ever allowed inside your

17

personal home?

18

No.

19

No.

There was some allegations that

20

there were some firearms that perhaps became

21

missing from your home or maybe your truck, and

22

that you -- there was some suggestions that you

23

maybe thought that he was the one that stole that?

24

I believe I made reference to that to

25

the GBI, yes.

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

26
Q

1
2

But you don't know that he actually

took those guns or the firearms?

No, I don't know.

Did you ever see him with weapons?

Yeah.

I suppose you could call some

of the things I saw him with weapons.

I know he

typically carried a pepper spray.

some pellet guns that looked like semiautomatic

handguns.

I know he had

And I believe I saw him with a knife.

10

And he had the police batons that he always had

11

with him.
Q

12
13

why he saw it necessary to carry that?


A

14
15

Did you know or did he tell you ever

Yeah.

I believe he said he did it to

protect his dog from other dogs.


Q

16

Did you ever meet any of his wives, or

17

do you know whether or not he had been married

18

before?

19

I have no idea.

20

You mentioned a girl by the name of

21

Shaun.

Did you ever meet her?

22

No.

23

Did you ever meet -- you mentioned

24

that he had maybe a friend or an acquaintance by

25

the name of Goddard.

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

27
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G.O.D.D.A.R.D., did you ever meet him?

No.

No.

Were you aware that the doctor

that prescribed Ritalin to Mr. Hilton has been

disciplined because of the amount of medication?

The amount of milligrams that --

No.

And when Ms. Emerson disappeared and

I don't know anything about that.

he was being like a suspect and you saw him on,

10

either on TV or the paper and you started to make

11

contact with the police and all that and

12

eventually you talked to Mr. Hilton, what did

13

Mr. Hilton say to you and how did that happen?

14
15

You need to back up.

I don't

understand your question.

16

Remember when Ms. Emerson was missing?

17

Yes.

18

And Mr. Hilton became a suspect?

19

Well, yes, because I am the one who

20

instigated the process of naming him as a suspect.

21

So, yes, I remember that very well.

22
23
24
25

Yes, why did you instigate?

What made

you think it was him?


A

Because I heard the description of the

person of interest --

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

28
1

Right.

-- that was last seen with

Ms. Emerson, and it was a combination of several

things.

which I had heard Hilton mention before.

the physical description.

appeared disheveled and 60.

vague physical descriptions of the person of

interest.

10

It was the location, Blood Mountain,


It was

It was a white man that


There was just some

And there was a mention that he had a

large dog with him.


And I think the thing that really

11
12

focused my attention to the news report was the

13

list of items they found near the Emerson vehicle

14

where they thought some sort of struggle had

15

ensued, and there was police baton.

16

of is what drove it home for me.

17

this sounds like Hilton.

18

duty to alert authorities to what I knew.


Q

19

And that kind

I thought, wow,

So I thought it was my

And did you have an opportunity to

20

call Mr. Hilton, or did he call you during that

21

period of time?

22

No.

I never called Hilton, no.

23

Did you talk to him prior to his

24

arrest, immediately prior to his arrest, on the

25

phone?

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

29
A

Yes.

I talked to him.

I believe it

was that same afternoon that I had identified him

as a possible suspect, that very morning.

yes, I did receive a phone call.


Q

5
6

So,

And what was the conversation about?

What was he telling you, I mean?


A

He was telling me that he wanted to

come back to work.

He apologized for his threats

and bizarre behavior and said he needed money to

10

get started again and he was ready to get back to

11

work.
Q

12
13

That was essentially -Was he talking fast, and what was his

speech that day that you talked to him?


A

14

You know, it's hard for me to recall

15

that.

16

that he called shocking, so I think I was doing my

17

best just to retain my composure.

18

really focusing as much on his demeanor but

19

probably my own so as not to alert him because he

20

appeared not to know anything about the manhunt

21

that was underway for him.

22

I found the whole event and the whole fact

So I wasn't

But did he appear to be sincere in his

23

request to let me go back to work or -- and his, I

24

guess, remorse, my word, saying, I'm sorry for

25

what I did to you?

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

30
1
2
3
4
5

I don't recall any reason to believe

one way or the other.


Q

Did you ask him where he was and what

he had been doing or anything like that?


A

Yes.

I did try to find out where he

was, but he wouldn't tell me.

couldn't.

could not give me a contact phone number but that

he would be back in touch.

10

He said he

He couldn't tell me where he was.

Did he still have your -- the cell

11

phone that was work, or had that already been

12

turned off that you had given him to use?

13

know when you turned it off.

14

I don't remember.

I don't

I don't remember if

15

it had been turned off at that point or not.

16

don't know.

17
18
19

He

And you talked only one time with him

prior to his being arrested or more than once?


A

He called twice.

It was basically the

20

same conversation, but there was a very bad

21

reception at the first call, so he hung up, then

22

called right back from another telephone.

23

So my -- I answered on my cell phone.

24

And it showed a phone number, but it wasn't one

25

that I recognized, so it wasn't from, you know,

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

31
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you're asking about the other cell phone.

not call from a recognizable number.


Q

3
4

I suppose he sounded

Was it bizarre to you that he would

call to apologize after what he had done?


A

9
10

Yeah, I suppose.

normal, uh-huh (affirmative).

7
8

But he appeared normal in his

conversations with you on the phone?

5
6

He did

Well, like I said, I found the whole

instance shocking.
Q

11

Were you shocked that Mr. Hilton was

12

actually being suspected of the murder and all

13

that?

14

Well, yeah, it was all very shocking.

15

He never gave you any indication that

16

he was violent during the period of time that he

17

worked with you; is that correct?

18

Not until he threatened to kill me.

19

And that was like the summer?

Like

20

that was September of 2007 maybe, or do you

21

recollect?

Do you remember the date?

22

I don't remember the date, no.

23

But it was 2007?

24

Yes.

25

And besides those two conversations

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

32
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that you had prior to the arrest, have you had any

conversations, or have you -- has he called you,

or have you received anything from him?

No.

Did he have access to your truck where

the gun came -- or that gun that you had in your

truck that came missing that you didn't notice for

about six months and then all of a sudden you

said, oops, where's the gun?

10

Did he have access

to driving that?

11

No.

12

Did you ever see him going on a date,

13

for example, or talking about, I have a date and

14

I'm going -- did he ever say anything like that to

15

you?
A

16

No, not that I ever -- no.

And here

17

again, I wasn't interested in his personal life.

18

But, no, I never recall him mentioning any such

19

thing.

20
21

Other than the Ritalin, did he tell

you about what other medication he was taking?

22

No.

23

Does the name Effexor ring a bell?

24

I can't say for certain.

25

I can't say

for certain.

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

33
Q

1
2

Did he ever said that he had muscular

dystrophy or --

He did, yes.

Did he say that it had been diagnosed

He did tell me that.

or that he had been diagnosed himself?


A

My recollection is that there was no

clinical diagnosis.

self-diagnosis.
Q

I seem to believe it was a

And when he started calling you -- by

10

the way, did you give the GBI or the police copies

11

of those voice messages that he left at your home?

12
13
14
15

He didn't leave any messages at my

The messages where they were

home.

threatening you, it was not --

16

That was my business phone number.

17

Did you give that to your business, I

18
19

mean, to the police, the recordings?


A

I let the Fulton County North Precinct

20

listen to those messages, when I reported his

21

threats to them.

22
23

Do you know whether or not they did a

recording of that?

24

I can't tell you.

25

And when you talked to the press,

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

34
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because you talked to the press, to CNN, you said

Mr. Hilton had turned belligerent.

mean "belligerent"?

What do you

At the time he was making his demands

for money, he wouldn't engage in a conversation.

He would -- I would answer the phone, and he would

start talking.

he finished saying whatever he wanted to say, and

then he would hang up or shout over me if I tried

10

And he wouldn't stop talking until

to respond.

11

Did you ever fire him from the job, or

12

he just left?

13

Well, since he worked as a

14

commissioned salesperson, there wasn't necessary

15

an act of saying, you're fired.

16

gotten to the point where he had become so

17

hostile, as I've described, and threatening that

18

it was pretty clear, I think, that there was not

19

going to be any further working relationship.

20

It had just

And the time that he came to pick up

21

the $2,500 ransom, how was he dressed?

22

recollect what his appearance was?


I don't remember.

Do you

23

24

dark or dusk.

25

don't remember anything out of the ordinary.

I think it was dark, so -- but I

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If I recall, it was

He

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

35
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typically wore sports-type clothing, hiking or

jogging type of attire.

wearing something similar, but I don't recall

specifically what he was wearing, though.


Q

So I would imagine he was

But you had apprehension because you

told of the GBI that you went into your home and

you armed yourself.

Yes.

But you didn't engage in any

10

conversation with him at the time, or do you

11

remember if you guys talked --

12

No.

13

-- that day?

14

I don't believe there was any talking.

15

All I remember is being very sorry that I wasn't

16

armed at that particular moment.

17

thing in my mind was getting armed as quickly as I

18

could.
Q

19
20

And the only

And that's because of the threats that

he had made?

21

Correct.

22

And did he ever use other name except

23
24
25

Gary?

Would he ever use any other name?


A

Yes.

He used the name Mac.

And I

think that had more to do with doing telephone

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

36
1

work.

thing where they had a nickname they would use.

But, yes, he often called himself Mac.

I know other telemarketers did that type of

Did he ever say, tell you that he

didn't like his name Gary and he was going to

start using Mac?

7
8
9

I don't remember any specific reason

why he called himself Mac.


Q

Did he ever have any friends that you

10

know of or anything like people that would hang

11

out, even with other people that you employed,

12

like socialize with or anything?

13

Like I said, I don't know of him

14

socializing with anyone other than what I've said

15

in the past.

16

like I said, I didn't keep track of his social

17

life, just -- I'm just recalling things he

18

mentioned to me.

19

The woman Shaun, that's it.

But,

And you said to the, I think to the

20

Atlanta Journal-Constitution that there was a time

21

that his behavior became increasingly aggressive

22

and erratic.

23

What do you mean by that?


Just what we've already been

24

discussing.

That would go back to the time where

25

he started demanding money that he wasn't owed and

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

37
1

making threats.
Q

Has he been on that medication that he

told you, that Ritalin, when he pulled his teeth

or he told you that he had pulled his teeth?

I think so.

Was he doing drugs at the time that

you know of?

I don't know.

Did he smoke marijuana that you know

He said that he did.

10
11
12

of?
I don't have any

firsthand knowledge.

13

Do you know if he used alcohol?

14

I don't know.

15

In the times that you had contact, and

16

I believe that you said it was sometimes that

17

would you have contact when he was employed with

18

you, did you smell any alcohol on his breath or --

19

Not that I recall, no.

20

Don't recall.

Or make any cause for

21

you to think this guy's maybe high on drugs or

22

anything like that?

23

No.

24

Did you ever witness any

25

confrontations between Mr. Hilton and other

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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people?

No.

Did he tell you about that he had been

in the military?

Yes.

I think, yes, uh-huh.

Did he show you his field maneuvers

and all that or attempted to show you some

maneuvers?

No.

10

There was a time when you went to pick

11

him up at the campsite because his van had broken

12

down and you went over there and he was practicing

13

with a pellet -- was it a pellet gun or some kind

14

of weapon?

15

A pellet or BB gun.

16

That didn't cause you any concern at

18

No.

19

Were you aware that he had made a

17

all?

20

movie called The Deadly -- or supposedly help made

21

a movie called The Deadly Run?

22

Don't know anything about that.

23

Did he ever mention to you during the

24

years that you were employed that he was famous

25

because he had made a movie?

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

39
1

No.

And the vehicle that -- the last

vehicle that Mr. Hilton had that, the white van,

that was -- you bought him that vehicle, and you

were basically -- you still have the title to that

vehicle or not?
A

I have no idea where the title is,

but, yeah, I advanced him money to purchase it.

He wasn't the type of individual that could get a

10

loan.

11

well, so it was --

12
13

But I've done that for other employees as

And what you would do is advance him,

and then if they worked they would repay you?

14

Correct.

15

Do you know if he paid you that

16
17

completely for that vehicle?


A

No, because, like I said, at the time

18

he was demanding money, saying that I owed him

19

money, I think he was fully well-aware that he had

20

accrued moneys through the purchase of the van and

21

other advances to where he was way behind in his

22

commissions for what he had drawn.

23

arrears.

24
25

So he was in

And what would make him think that you

owe him money all of a sudden?

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

40
1

him think that you have not paid him what he was

due?

I suppose only he knows that.

Do you think that that was some of the

erratic behavior and the change that you saw in

him during that period of time?


A

7
8

question.
Q

I'm not sure I understand your


Are you asking -Do you think that's part of the

10

right -- or the bizarre behavior that all of a

11

sudden after you advanced him so much money and

12

helped him that he would turn and alleging that

13

you owe him money when probably it was vice versa?


A

14

Well, yeah, I suppose I would have

15

considered that bizarre.

16

really believed that he believed it, so I don't

17

know.
Q

18

I wasn't sure whether I

Do you know if he was ever seen by a

19

mental health like a psychiatrist or anything like

20

that?

21

I don't know.

22

One of the detectives that when he

23

went to your house and listened to the voice

24

messages that he had, that he had left at your

25

business phone, said that -- called Hilton nuts,

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

41
1

N.U.T.S.

Do you know what he was talking about

when he called him, Mr. Hilton, that?

No.

Was he saying that he was crazy or --

Well, you'd have to ask him.

6
7

I can't

testify to his state of mind.


Q

Do you remember who the person was

that came and listened to that, the name of the

officer?

10

No.

No.

They were -- I met, like I

11

said, quite a few officers, the GBI and the FBI.

12

And, no, I don't remember their names off the top

13

of my head.

14

Whenever Ranger died, and you said

15

that he was sad for a period of time or at least

16

you noticed that he was sad, do you know how long

17

it took him to endure that?

18

No.

19

Did he say anything to you about going

20

to a VA hospital or anything like that?

21

I have some vague recollection of him

22

stating that.

23

that was relating to his claim of having MS,

24

that -- yeah.

25

I do remember him saying something about

And I think that was -- I think

I can't remember any specifics, but

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State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

42
1

attempting to seek treatment at a VA hospital, but

that's about all I remember.

3
4
5
6
7

If you were to describe Mr. Hilton to

a person, how would you describe him?


A

Well, it depends on what, what point

in time I would be doing that.


Q

I want you to do it at the point in

time from the first time that you employed him to

like two years before he got -- he was arrested

10
11

for this offense in Georgia?


A

All right.

So if I would have to

12

describe him at the time I first employed him,

13

like I said, he seemed just like a normal person.


And now you're asking me to describe

14
15
16

him two years before what date?


Q

Before the time that he was arrested,

17

would you describe him as a normal person?

18

you also describe him as a reliable employee?

19
20

Would

I would -- I would have described him

as a loyal employee up until this time in 2007.

21

Okay.

22

Yeah.

23

Did he work hard?

24

He had worked hard, and he did his job

25

A hard worker?

well, uh-huh (affirmative).

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

43
1
2
3

And after the 2007 incident, how would

you describe him?


A

Well, 2007, there wasn't just one day

this happened.

months where his behavior just became more

bizarre, if you will.

7
8
9

There was a period of time and

So there was certainly a change in his

attitude and his behavior?


A

Yes.

But, like I said, I can't

10

pinpoint a day.

11

of months because, here again, I didn't see him.

12

I didn't see him in person, maybe not for months

13

at a time, so most of our conversation would be

14

via the telephone.

15

I can just tell you over a period

And here again, that wasn't on a daily

16

or not even a weekly basis.

17

you that through that period of 2007, maybe

18

starting in the spring or end of winter, I'm not

19

sure when, he just didn't seem to be doing his job

20

any longer and making excuses for why he wasn't

21

doing his job.

22

So I can just tell

And considering that he had been a

23

good employee for so, so long, I didn't

24

immediately become alarmed.

25

what he was telling me, that he had been ill and

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I tended to believe

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

44
1

he wasn't feeling well and couldn't work for weeks

at a time, but, you know, he expected to be back

to work.

and until it got to the point where it became

threatening.

6
7

So that went on for a period of months

Has anyone sued you in relation with

the business when Mr. Hilton was your employee?

I don't understand your question.

Has anybody sued you as a result of

10

that business that you had during the period of

11

time that Mr. Hilton was employed with you?

12
13

How is that reasonably calculated to

lead to admissible evidence in this case?

14

I'm just asking.

15

You're asking about my personal -- my

16
17

business.
Q

I'm just asking because my question

18

was going to be whether or not Mr. Hilton was

19

involved in that lawsuit in any way.

20
21
22

There was a lawsuit, but Hilton had

nothing to do with the lawsuit.


Q

That's all I wanted to hear.

Okay.

23

Now, why, aside from the fact that he threatened

24

to kill you and all of that stuff, why did you go

25

to the press and to CNN?

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And were they contacting

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

45
1

you, or were you contacting them?

They were contacting me relentlessly.

And you talked to the press several

More than several times.

4
5

times?
From the

moment I identified Hilton as the person of

interest and that was verified, my phone rang

constantly.

Is there anything that I have not

10

asked you that you might think is pertinent in

11

dealing with Mr. Hilton?


You met Mr. Hilton in a period of time

12
13

where I didn't have any contact with him, during

14

his work or anything.

15

have -- maybe perhaps you would like to add that

16

might assist in me finding out what type of

17

individual Mr. Hilton was?

18

No.

19

No.

Is there anything that I

Okay.

Well, I believe that those

20

are all the questions that I have.

21

appreciate you coming here to talk to me.

22

THE WITNESS:

23

MS. SUBER:

And I really

Okay.
Thanks.

24

(Whereupon off-the-record discussions

25

ensued.)

Donovan Reporting & Video Conferencing

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

46
1

(REPORTER'S NOTE:

Whereupon it was agreed

among counsel and the witness that the

witness's right to read and sign the

deposition would be waived.)

(Deposition adjourned, 2:22 p.m.)

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Donovan Reporting & Video Conferencing

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770.499.7499

8bdbaeb8-44d5-42d8-8f6a-0951b99f8571

John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

47
1

Pursuant to Article 10.B of the Rules and

Regulations of the Board of Court Reporting of

the Judicial Council of Georgia, I make the

following disclosure:

I am a Georgia Certified Court Reporter here as

a representative of Donovan Reporting, PC.

not disqualified for a relationship of interest

under the provisions of OCGA 9-11-28(c).

Donovan Reporting, PC, was hired to provide court

I am

10

reporting services for this deposition.

11

Donovan Reporting, PC, will not be taking this

12

deposition under any contract prohibited by

13

OCGA 15-14-37 (a) and (b).

14

Donovan Reporting, PC, has no exclusive contract

15

to provide reporting services with any party to

16

the case, any counsel in the case, or any

17

reporter or reporting agency for whom a

18

referral might have been made to cover this

19

deposition.

20

its usual and customary rates to all parties in

21

the case, except as may be otherwise agreed

22

to on a case-by-case basis.

Donovan Reporting, PC, will charge

23
24
25

Donovan Reporting & Video Conferencing

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770.499.7499

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

48
C E R T I F I C A T E

1
2

GEORGIA

COBB COUNTY

I hereby certify that the above and

foregoing pages 1 through 48

are a true, complete, correct, and exact

transcript of my shorthand notes taken in

the above-referenced matter;

That same constitutes a true,

10

complete, correct, and exact record of the

11

above-referenced matter;

12
13

That same was transcribed through


computer-assisted transcription;

14

That I am not of kin or counsel to any

15

of the attorneys or parties, nor am I in the

16

regular employ of any of the attorneys or

17

parties;

18

This 6th day of October, 2010.

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20
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22
23
24

_______________________________
KIMBERLY A. STEWART, B-1922
Certified Court Reporter

25

Donovan Reporting & Video Conferencing

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John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

Page 49
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770.499.7499

John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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Donovan Reporting & Video Conferencing

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770.499.7499

John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

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Donovan Reporting & Video Conferencing

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770.499.7499

John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

Page 52
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770.499.7499

John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

Page 53
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770.499.7499

John Tabor

State of Florida vs Gary M. Hilton

September 24, 2010

Page 54
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