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Timeline: The Scott Peterson case

July 5, 2012: Eight years after being sentenced to death for the murders of wife Laci Peterson and unborn son, Scott Peterson files an automatic appeal to the California Supreme Court.

March 17, 2005: Peterson arrives at California’s San Quentin State Prison.

March 16, 2005: Judge Alfred Delucchi formally sentences Peterson to death, calling the murder of his wife "cruel, uncaring, heartless, and callous.” Delucchi also denies the defense’s request for a new trial and orders Peterson to pay $10,000 toward the cost of Laci Peterson’s funeral.

Dec. 13, 2004: A 12-person jury recommends the death penalty for Peterson.

Nov. 12, 2004: A reconstituted jury convicts Scott Peterson of first-degree murder with special circumstances for killing wife Laci and second-degree murder for killing the fetus she carried.

May 27, 2004: Twelve jurors are selected for Peterson’s trial. The six men and six women say they would be willing to sentence Scott to death if he was convicted of killing his wife and unborn son.

Feb. 5, 2004: Peterson’s defense team announces it is ready for trial.

Feb. 2, 2004: Judge Delucchi bans cameras from the Peterson trial courtroom, and delays the trial by a week in response to a defense request citing Geragos' obligations to a separate murder case in southern California.

Jan. 27, 2004: Alfred A. Delucchi, a retired Alameda County judge, is appointed by the state's chief justice to preside over the Peterson trial after prosecutors exercises their option to remove Arnason as the trial judge, claiming he would be biased against the state's case.

Jan. 21, 2004: Retired Contra Costa County Judge Richard Arnason is selected to preside over the Peterson trial. The prosecution asks for the trial to be postponed for two weeks.

Nov. 18, 2003: Judge Al Girolami rules that Peterson will stand trial on double murder charges. Proceedings are scheduled to begin Jan. 26.

Nov. 6, 2003: A police detective testifies that Scott Peterson told Frey he was a recent widower on Dec. 9, 2002, two weeks before his wife disappeared, and that Peterson had a handgun in his truck when police responded to his report of a missing person.

Nov. 3, 2003: A defense expert testifies that mitochondrial DNA tests, which cannot link evidence to a specific individual, are scientifically flawed.

Oct. 29, 2003: Peterson’s preliminary hearing is held. An FBI expert testifies that mitochondrial DNA tests had loosely-linked a strand of hair found embedded in a pair of needle-nosed pliers on Scott Peterson's boat to Laci.

Oct. 15, 2003: Sources tell Fox News that telephone logs show that Scott Peterson called Frey hundreds of times after his wife's disappearance, contradicting prior claims that Frey pursued him.

Aug. 29, 2003: Laci Peterson and her unborn son are buried in a private ceremony.

Aug. 22, 2003: The Stanislaus County coroner announces that the bodies of Laci Peterson and her unborn son have been released, but does indicate to whom. Later that day, sources tell Fox News that Scott Peterson had admitted -- then denied -- involvement in his wife's disappearance in a wiretapped telephone conversation with his then-girlfriend Amber Frey.

Aug. 5, 2003: Defense attorneys claim Scott Peterson turned down an offer by the Stanislaus County district attorney to exchange a promise not to seek the death penalty for a confession.

June 6, 2003: Scott Peterson appears to cry as a judge decides to keep autopsy reports of his slain wife sealed. Judge Al Girolami denies request to issue gag order on lawyers involved in case. Separately, a broker offers nude pictures of Amber Frey to the highest bidder.

June 2, 2003: Scott Peterson’s attorneys announce they are searching for a man named "Donnie" as the possible killer and claim the man may be linked to a mysterious brown van spotted in the area of the Petersons' house on Dec. 24, 2002.

May 16, 2003: Peterson's lawyers announce theory that “Satanic” cult kidnapped and murdered Laci.

May 4, 2003: Thousands of people attend Modesto's First Baptist Church for Laci's memorial service.

May 2, 2003: Scott Peterson hires high-profile attorney Mark Geragos to take over his case.

April 25, 2003: Stanislaus County District Attorney James Barzelton announces he will seek the death penalty against Scott Peterson.

April 21, 2003: Scott Peterson pleads not guilty to charges of murdering his wife and unborn child.

April 18, 2003: Police in San Diego arrest Scott Peterson, who is found carrying a large amount of cash and his brother's passport. Attorney General Bill Lockyer says bodies found in Richmond are those of Laci Peterson and her unborn son.

April 14, 2003: The body of a woman and a male fetus that washed ashore in Richmond, Calif., are found.

March 6, 2003: Modesto police officially declare the case a homicide.

Feb. 18, 2003: Authorities issue a search warrant for the Petersons’ home in Modesto, where they remove possible evidence.

Feb. 17, 2003: Scott Peterson's mother, Jackie, tells The Associated Press her family believes kidnappers abducted Laci Peterson with intentions of holding her captive until she delivered the baby.

Feb. 10, 2003: Laci Peterson’s expected due date.

Jan. 24, 2003: Amber Frey, a massage therapist from Fresno, confirms she had a romantic relationship with Scott Peterson.

Jan. 23, 2003: Laci Peterson’s family says Scott Peterson told authorities he had been involved with another woman.

Jan. 17, 2003: Relatives of Laci Peterson hold a news conference to demand Scott Peterson tell authorities everything he knows about the case.

Dec. 24, 2002: Laci Peterson, while 8-months pregnant, is reported missing from her home in Modesto, Calif., by husband Scott Peterson. He claimed to have returned from a fishing trip and was unable to find his wife.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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