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Jurors: Peterson Silence Spoke Volumes

No single piece of evidence led Scott Peterson's (search) 12 jurors to decide he killed his pregnant wife nearly two years ago, but several said they were struck by Peterson's stoic nature.

The 32-year-old former fertilizer salesman never took the stand in his own defense during the 6-month trial and remained largely emotionless throughout.

When the jury entered the courtroom Monday to recommend he get the death penalty, Peterson clenched his jaw and leaned over to speak to his attorney, Mark Geragos (search), but showed no other emotion.

"I can't think of anything that could be worse," Stephen Cardosi (search), the jury's foreman, told FOX News in an exclusive interview with Greta Van Susteren.

Cardosi said that what sealed the recommendation of death for him was "the extreme, personal nature of the crime itself. ... This wasn't a random act of violence."

"This was the person that he took vows with, the person with whom he said 'til death do us part,'" he said.

Cardosi and two other jurors spoke to reporters after the death penalty recommendation was announced, which marked the official end of the trial.

All three said there was no single factor that led to their decision to convict Peterson and decide that death was the appropriate punishment. It was all the evidence considered together — even though the prosecution's case was circumstantial.

"It's hard to narrow it down to one specific topic — there are many," Cardosi said. "Collaboratively, when you add it all up, there doesn't seem to be any other possibility."

"There are so many things, so many things," added Richelle Nice, an unemployed mother of four from East Palo Alto. "Scott Peterson was Laci's husband, Conner's daddy — the one person that should have protected them."

Gregory Beratlis, a coach of youth football and baseball, said he went into the process believing Peterson was innocent, but the facts of the case just didn't point that way.

"Those bodies were found in the one place he went prior to her being missing," he said. "I played in my mind, over and over, conspiracies: Was somebody trying to set up Scott? Was somebody after Laci? It didn't add up for me."

All three were frequently on the verge of tears during the news conference.

"It's very difficult for us to sit up here and talk about this," Cardosi said. "We're very choked up."

In the end, jurors were swayed as much by Peterson's emotions — or lack thereof — as by any testimony during the five-month trial.

"For me, a big part of it was at the end — the verdict — no emotion. No anything. That spoke a thousand words — loud and clear," Nice said, responding to a reporter's question about whether they wanted to hear a statement from Peterson. "I heard enough from him."

Cardosi said he wanted some kind of reaction from Peterson.

"I still would have liked to see, I don't know if 'remorse' is the right word," he said. "He lost his wife and his child — it didn't seem to faze him. While that was going on ... he is romancing a girlfriend."

The six-man, six-woman jury found Peterson guilty Nov. 12 of first-degree murder in the slaying of his pregnant wife Laci and second-degree murder in the death of the 8-month-old fetus she was carrying.

The same panel had to choose between life in prison without parole or death by lethal injection.

Judge Alfred A. Delucchi (search) will formally impose a sentence on Peterson, 32, on Feb. 25 and can choose to downgrade the punishment to life in prison without parole. It's rare for judges to reduce a jury's recommendation in a capital-murder case.

Had the jury's recommendation been for life behind bars, Delucchi would have had to follow it.

As the death recommendation was read, Laci Peterson's (search) mother, Sharon Rocha (search), cried, her lips quivering. Scott Peterson's mother, Jackie, showed no apparent emotion.

Laci's stepfather, Ron Grantski, appeared at a news conference after the jury announced its decision. He said justice was served.

"There was no reason to doubt it was Scott who did what he did," Grantski said. "He got what he deserved."

He asked reporters to respect his family's privacy in the coming weeks.

"We've got a lot of holidays and dates coming up that are going to be very hard on us," Grantski said. "Dec. 15 [2002] was the last time Sharon and I saw Laci alive. I'm hoping you'll all just give us some time. We'll be happy to give more interviews after the first of the year."

Geragos spoke briefly to reporters after the recommendation was handed down.

"Obviously, we're very disappointed," said Geragos. "Obviously, we plan on pursuing ... all appeals, motions for a new trial and everything else. All I ask is that you respect Jackie and Lee's [Peterson's] and the family's privacy for the next week or so. At some point, they'll make a statement. At that time, they'll field questions. In the interim, I hope you can understand that it's a very difficult time."

Death penalty cases call for automatic appeals. Legal analysts told FOX News on Tuesday that the shuffling of jurors and the viewing of Peterson's aluminum fishing boat during deliberations in the guilt phase of the trial would be among the points of contention brought up in the appeals process.

"Appellate courts tend to really scrutinize those kinds of things," criminal defense attorney Robert Tarver told FOX. "Some of the issues for appeal may be developing now ... The more these jurors talk about the deliberative process, the more Mark Geragos is going to be sitting with his little [note] pad."

Two jurors were dismissed and replaced with alternates during deliberations in the guilt phase. Another was tossed early in the trial.

Also during deliberations over Peterson's guilt or innocence, jurors inspected Peterson's 14-foot aluminum fishing boat, which was brought to the courthouse. They examined the sides and looked under the boat before a few jurors climbed inside and rocked it from side to side.

The defense had argued that it would have been nearly impossible for Peterson to push his wife's body over the side of the boat without tipping it.

Defense attorneys called 39 witnesses over seven days in the penalty phase of Peterson's double-murder trial. Prosecutors called just four of Laci's family members, all on the first day, Nov. 30.

The decision came almost two years to the day after the disappearance of Laci Peterson, the 27-year-old substitute teacher who married her college sweetheart and was soon to be the mother of a baby boy named Conner.

The story set off a tabloid frenzy as suspicion began to swirl around Scott Peterson, who claimed to have been fishing by himself on Christmas Eve but was revealed to have been carrying on an affair with a massage therapist at the time.

The remains of Laci and the fetus washed ashore about four months later, just a few miles from where Peterson claims to have gone fishing in San Francisco Bay. The case went to trial in June, and Peterson was convicted Nov. 12 of two counts of murder.

Peterson will now be sent to death row at San Quentin State Prison (search) just across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco. In the infamous lockup, prisoners gaze out small cell windows onto the same waters where Laci Peterson's body was thrown.

Peterson might not be executed for decades, if ever.

California's death row has housed more than 640 condemned men and women since the state reinstated capital punishment in 1978. Executions resumed in 1992, and only 10 have been carried out since. It can take years for even the first phase of the appeals process to begin.

California's last execution was on Jan. 29, 2002, when Stephen Wayne Anderson — described by supporters as the "poet laureate of Death Row" — was put to death by lethal injection for the Memorial Day 1980 murder of 81-year-old Elizabeth Lyman during a break-in at her home.

As many as three murderers face possible execution in 2005, said Department of Corrections spokeswoman Margot Bach.

FOX News' Adam Housley, Claudia Cowan, Catherine Donaldson-Evans and The Associated Press contributed to this report.