Emotional testimony in penalty phase of Carnation murder case: 'I am destroyed'

SEATTLE -- Relatives of the six members of a family who were shot to death in Carnation in 2007 gave emotional testimony Tuesday on the first day of the penalty trial of the man convicted of their murders.

Last Wednesday, Joseph McEnroe was convicted of killing Wayne and Judy Anderson; her brother and sister-in-law, Scott and Erica Anderson, and the young couple’s children, Olivia, 5, and Nathan, 3.

Michele Anderson, the daughter of Wayne and Judy Anderson, sister of Scott and girlfriend of McEnroe, allegedly killed her family with McEnroe.  Her trial will be held later.

Now, the state is asking the same jury who convicted McEnroe of murder to sentence him to death.

“I am destroyed, my kids will never be the same, feel like a weirdo,” an emotional Mary Victoria Anderson, the eldest daughter of Wayne and Judy Anderson, told the jury.

The state called six witnesses to the stand on Tuesday. All of them were asked the same question: how did the murders affect their lives.

“I remember saying, 'Are they all dead?'” said Mary Victoria Anderson.

Joseph McEnroe, convicted of murder, being led into King County Superior Court Tuesday for the beginning of the penalty phase of the case. He is expected to testify in his defense Wednesday in the hope of avoiding the death penalty.

“The fact that (3-year-old) Nathan was shot by this man, Joseph McEnroe, as he lay against his mother’s chest; Nathan, as you know. received a bullet to the head,” prosecutor Scott O’Toole said to the jury.

Prosecutors say McEnroe deserves death because of the gravity of his crimes and the damage he’s done.

Ken Anderson, Wayne's brother, testified, “Wayne was a hard-working kid that did everything that he was supposed to almost all the time and he didn’t deserve it.”

Prosecutors said what was especially cruel was that McEnroe and Michele Anderson killed Wayne and Judy Anderson and then waited for Scott to arrive at the family home with his wife and their two children on Christmas Eve.

They confessed to police that they wanted to eliminate witnesses, prosecutors said.

Erica’s sister described the trauma of finding out for the first time from her husband that Erica was dead.

“He said, 'I’m sorry honey but she is gone.' I screamed and I hit my husband and my child was in the other room,” Sara Vanwyk said, crying.

Anguished family members also talked about all the memories they never got to share.

“It’s not OK that there are no report cards and conferences and baseball games,” Vanwyk said.

The defense case is expected to last weeks, but on Tuesday they asked for mercy, saying McEnroe doesn't deserve the death penalty because he suffers from mental illness.

McEnroe will be taking the stand in his defense Wednesday morning.