REDWOOD CITY, Calif. (KRON) — Olivier Adella failed one polygraph question, twice. The question was, did he kill Keith Green?
A defense attorney told KRON4 Monday about the Mixed Martial Arts fighter’s failed polygraph test, which was never revealed during the trial of Hillsborough heiress Tiffany Li. Attorney John May also revealed that Adella made claims to have “killed in the past.”
Li, a 34-year-old millionaire, is rebuilding her life after a San Mateo County jury found her not guilty of murdering Green, the father of her two young daughters.
Green was murdered in April of 2016. Prosecutors said Li lured Green to her mansion; her then-boyfriend, Kaveh Bayat, shot Green to death in the garage execution-style; and the couple’s body guard, Adella, got rid of the body.
Now that Li is free, and the jury deadlocked 6-6 over Bayat’s guilt, the victim’s friends and family are seeking justice through an online petition, “Justice for Keith.“
On Dec. 4, prosecutors are expected to announce what it will do next in the unique homicide case. Will 33-year-old Bayat face a new trial? Will Adella be put on trial instead? Or will they go on trial together as co-defendants, both charged with murder?
“We battled them to a draw,” May said. “If they are going to retry him again, we are going to win. Mr. Bayat will be acquitted next time. He is the least guilty of the players.”
Li wiped away tears of relief when the jury announced its verdict. Bayat, in contrast, sat in disbelief after the judge declared a mistrial for the charges again him.
“He thought he was going to be acquitted. He is devastated,” May told KRON.
During Li’s trial, her defense team based its case off Adella being the true killer. May said the District Attorney’s Office learned its lesson “the hard way,” by putting Li and Bayat on trial for homicide, instead of Adella.
Green’s mother remains convinced that Li is by no means innocent. “She orchestrated all of this,” Colleen Cudd told reporters. “She was evil to me, she was evil to my son, she’s just evil.”
Prosecutors said Bayat wanted to replace Green as Li’s boyfriend and felt threatened by him, even after Li broke up with Green and allowed Bayat to move into her $9-million-dollar Hillsborough mansion.
Bayat’s defense attorney told KRON that the petition is aimed at the wrong person.
“I feel tremendous empathy for the Green family. But their petition is misplaced. Justice will be served for Keith Green when Adella is tried and convicted of the murder he committed,” May said.
During the Li-Bayat trial, testimony revealed that a San Mateo Sheriff’s forensic team did not find a murder scene, May said.
“There was only evidence of Green’s blood in Adella’s truck and apartment,” May said.
Li and Bayat, who were once engaged, broke up sometime during the years following their arrests.
When asked by KRON4 on Monday if Li would ever testify against Bayat if the District Attorney pursues a second trial, May said, “I don’t believe she would.”
When asked why the District Attorney’s Office put Li and Bayat on trial for homicide, May said, “I think it was because Colleen Cudd blamed Tiffany immediately. It was a monumentally poor decision to make that plea agreement with Adella. He’s a scary cat. Adella has been a drifter his entire adult life. He’s someone who looks for an easy mark, easy money, and just goes after it.”
The petition for Green states that it is seeking to, “Force the san mateo district attorney to charge and prosecute Mr K Bayat in keith Greens murder, to search and find other financial evidence that ties all the defendants to Keiths murder, and look into possible jury tampering.”
In an interview with reporters immediately after Li’s verdict, District Attorney Steve Wagstaff said there will be several factors that go into deciding whether there will be a second trial, and if so, who will go on trial.
One factor that Wagstaff discussed was that fact that the jury was split 6-6, as opposed to 11-1, and noted that he realizes taxpayers’ money is being spent every time a new trial happens.
While urging others to sign the petition, Green’s mother, Colleen Cudd wrote, “Wagstaff said in a statement that they would have to discuss whether or not to retry Kaveh Bayet for the murder and conspiracy of Keith Green claiming that the cost to taxpayers may be to much. Isn’t this what we pay our taxes for?”
Prosecutors had to rely on predominately circumstantial evidence for the Li-Bayat trial, and motive was a big factor presented to the jury. Li was motivated by her desire to move on from Green and get rid of his repeated attempts to get more money from her family’s fortune, prosecutors said.
But what would motivate Adella to go as far as killing Green?
May told KRON4, “Adella is someone who looks for an easy mark, easy money, and just goes after it. He saw an opportunity and he took advantage of it. Who knows what he really wanted, whether we wanted Keith Green dead. But Keith Green died as a result of Adella’s actions.”
Green’s diamond Cartier watch was found in Adella’s apartment as police raided it following the homicide. They also found a lunch box filled with stacks of $100 bills adding up to more than $30,000.
Friends of Green said they don’t believe anyone would be motivated to rob Green because, at the time of his death, he couldn’t even afford to pay rent.
Since announcing its verdict, the Li-Bayat jury has largely remained silent. One juror tweeted a message to KRON reading, “The key to this trial was the inability of the prosecution to prove guilt beyond reasonable doubt. I was in the jury room with 11 others. Our group was diligent in the examination of evidence.”