"We are challenging the weaknesses in the prosecution's case against John," Defense Attorney Richard Kammen told The Brazil Times outside the Clay County Circuit Courtroom Wednesday. "We are pointing out the inconsistencies in the case."
Taken into custody in March for two counts of murder and initially incarcerated with a $200,000 bond, Lovett, 37, Brazil, the indictment information filed by the Grand Jury against Lovett was sealed. He was released on bail from the Clay County Justice Center April 16 after raising the 10 percent, $20,000, for bail.
Shortly afterwards, it was discovered there was an improper hearing process when setting the initial bond. When the court revoked his bond, Lovett voluntarily turned himself in to authorities at the Clay County Sheriff's Department without incident on May 12.
According to Circuit Court Judge Joseph Trout, no evidentiary hearing took place before the court set the bond in April. An evidentiary hearing would have allowed Lovett and his defense counsel to dispute the case against him.
"The defense has a legal right to challenge evidence presented by the prosecution during the bond process," Trout said. "Afterwards, the court will then make a legal decision if a bond reduction should be made."
Although witnesses were questioned and testimony was presented in the courtroom about information provided during the three-week Grand Jury proceedings in February, Tuesday and Wednesday's proceedings are not part of the potential murder trial.
Kammen spent those two days attempting to show that testimony provided during the Grand Jury proceedings was potentially one-sided. He questioned several witnesses about the "good relationship" Lovett had with Pickett and how he would not be involved in her murder or that of her father.
Officials believed the Grand Jury testimony in February would help develop more evidence and get to the truth.
In an effort to prove the case was weak against Lovett, Kammen spent two days challenging aspects of the Grand Jury testimony.
The defense questioned why information provided from several sources during the 20-year investigation that should have led to the investigation of suspects other than Lovett.
Kammen questioned Indiana State Police Det. Alan McElroy, lead investigator in the case since 2003, why all of a sudden ISP Dive Teams were diving in a pond at Craig Park Tuesday.
"Your brother officers were pretty busy yesterday, weren't they?" he said. "What were they looking for in the pond at Craig Park?"
Although the pond had been mentioned in prior interviews, McElroy confirmed the dive teams were investigating the area in hopes of finding the shotgun used in the murders. McElroy confirmed that nothing was found at the site that could be connected to the case, but added, "We will continue to search and investigate leads in this case until it goes to trial."
In 2004, Brazil City Police Captain Roger Lindsay, one of the original investigators, was accused of creating false information that wrongly implicated individuals of the murders. The first time a Grand Jury was convened in this case, Lindsay was the target, and although he was indicted on several charges, they were later dismissed.
Both the prosecution and Kammen believe Lindsay's alleged tampering hampered both the original case and the subsequent Indiana State Police Cold Case Investigative Team's investigations of the unsolved crime for more than 17 years.
As testimony continued, Kammen provided many different theories for the murders.
Allegations of the murders being connected to drugs, cover-ups, political corruption, corrupt and lazy police officers, shoddy police work and intentional lies, gossip and innuendo from potential witness interviews made family members and friends of the murder victims and Lovett sitting in the courtroom gasp in apparent shock.
Scheduling conflicts didn't allow the testimony of a professional pathologist during Wednesday's court proceedings.
Trout continued the proceedings to allow for the pathologist's testimony on Aug. 21, at 1:30 p.m. A decision will be made about Lovett's bond reduction after the evidentiary portion of the proceedings.