Andersen denied involvement with crimes during his arrest

Tom Lopez

A state trooper told jurors Tuesday how she and other officers apprehended an injured Puiassance Andersen after a high-speed car chase in Wisconsin. She told them Andersen said he was just going to see his daughter in Chicago and had nothing to do with any criminal activity.
Puiassance Andersen is charged with 11 counts in relation to a rape and burglary incident at an off-campus apartment last October. He was arrested with Antonio D. Burton, who was driving a car that was stolen from one of the victims of the break-in.
Wisconsin State Trooper Shari Ann Kalk was not able to testify with colleagues who took the stand on Monday, because she was in a car accident last Wednesday.
Kalk testified that she was going west on I-94 when she was alerted that the suspects were heading east. She turned around and waited for the stolen car to approach.
Kalk added that when she first heard the report, she was told, erroneously, that they were murder suspects.
The suspects passed her, being pursued by police cars, at a speed she estimated to be 110 or 115 mph.
When the suspects exited, she followed the other police cars, and saw that the suspects had been in an accident. She testified that she and the other officers got out of their cars with their guns drawn when she saw the driver take his seat belt off. “I called dispatch and said ‘He’s fleeing; the suspect is fleeing,'” she testified.
However, the driver, Burton, was getting in the back seat.
When she went to Andersen, who was in the passenger’s seat, she said it was clear he had endured the brunt of the accident. “He had blood running down his face,” she said.
Kalk added that at the time, “both suspects were opening their eyes and shutting them quickly. I wasn’t sure if they were fading in and out of consciousness or what,” she said.
Andersen, she testified, was asking whether he was going to die, and saying he had “nothing to do with it; he was just trying to get to Chicago to see his daughter, and that he was only along for the ride.” She added that Andersen also said, “Antonio did it.”
Kalk said when she asked for the spelling of his name, however, he misspelled it — twice.
Paul Schneck, Andersen’s defense attorney, questioned whether she thought the misspelling might not have been the result of disorientation. Kalk said Andersen was aware of what he was saying. “He was alert; I checked his pupils,” she said.
During trial on Tuesday, one juror was excused because she inadvertently obtained information about the trial she was not supposed to have. The judge and attorneys from both sides thanked the ex-juror for coming forward with the information. The juror also said no other jurors had contact with the information.
Burton and Andersen’s brother Giezwa are also charged in the incident. The prosecution has eight more witnesses to call, including former suspect Victor M. Porter, who pleaded guilty to one count of burglary in late February.