Sgt. James Allan Kulbicki admitted yesterday to having an extramarital affair with Gina Marie Nueslein that continued until the day before she disappeared while walking to work -- but he said he did not kill her.
"No, sir," the Baltimore police officer said, answering defense attorney Henry L. Belsky's question.
Sergeant Kulbicki, 37, is being tried in Baltimore County Circuit Court on charges of first-degree murder and use of a handgun.
Ms. Nueslein, 22, of the 3300 block of Ramona Ave. disappeared Jan. 9, four days before a paternity hearing to establish child support for her son, Michael Nueslein, now 2. Sergeant Kulbicki admitted yesterday that he was the boy's father.
A park employee found Ms. Nueslein's body the morning after her disappearance. She had been shot in the head and dumped near a trash can at the end of Grace's Quarter Road in Gunpowder Falls State Park.
Sergeant Kulbicki, who joined the police force in 1984, said he had testified in court "probably over 1,000 times."
He showed little emotion yesterday except when he recalled the crowd of reporters who clustered around him as he was led from court after a bail hearing, "handcuffed at the wrist and ankles." Often, he answered questions in a stilted fashion.
When Deputy State's Attorney Sue Schenning asked him about several calls Ms. Nueslein's mother and sister had made to his home the night of Jan. 9, he replied, "I advised the mother that she had two choices: Either wait for the girl to come home at a later time, or call the Police Department and advise missing persons."
Throughout his testimony, attorneys made repeated references to Monday's testimony by Connie Kulbicki, the sergeant's wife. She had cast suspicion on her son, Darryl Marciszewski, 18. Mr. Marciszewski, the sergeant's stepson, has denied any involvement in the slaying.
Yesterday, the sergeant said Darryl sometimes wore the denim coat that was stained with Ms. Nueslein's blood and that the youth drove the black 1988 pickup truck in which police found a bone fragment and spots of blood consistent with the victim's.
Also yesterday, two state rebuttal witnesses told the jury what Mr. Marciszewski told them last week. Deborah Dean, 22, and Melody Czajkowski, 19, work at a nursing home with Mr. Marciszewski.
Ms. Czajkowski said she mentioned the trial last Thursday, not knowing Mr. Marciszewski's relationship to the defendant.
"Darryl told me that he was going to get his father off by saying he did it." Then, she said, "His father would say, 'I did it. My son's not guilty' . . . and they couldn't try [Sergeant Kulbicki] again for the same crime because it would be double jeopardy."
"Darryl told me his father was framed and he didn't do it," she said.
Ms. Dean, 22, gave a similar account.
Sergeant Kulbicki, of the 3400 block of Toone St., said he met Ms. Nueslein when she was 16 and a waitress. He said he didn't become sexually involved with her until 1989, when she was 19.
He said he told his wife about the affair in 1990 but didn't tell her that he had continued seeing Ms. Nueslein up to Jan. 8, the day before she disappeared, when he drove her to work.
Last week, one of Ms. Nueslein's co-worker testified that the woman had a slap mark on her face the afternoon of Jan. 8. Yesterday, Sergeant Kulbicki said, "I know of no slap mark on her when she walked into that store." He denied being jealous over Ms. Nueslein's seeing another police officer before her death, saying, "It really was going to benefit her to find someone her age that was single. I was glad she did."
He also recited a series of errands he ran in the pickup truck Jan. 9 and hired a private investigator to retrace. "I know the importance of establishing where you were at during the time of a crime," he said.