KANSAS CITY, Mo. – A woman accused of killing an expectant northwest Missouri mother and cutting the baby from her womb claimed to be pregnant at least five times after having her tubes tied, the woman's ex-husband testified.
Carl Bowman, former husband of Lisa Montgomery, testified Tuesday that his ex-wife was unable to have children after undergoing a tubal ligation in 1990. Testimony was to continue on Wednesday.
Montgomery is on trial in federal court for the slaying of Bobbie Jo Stinnett. She is accused of crudely cutting the baby from the 23-year-old woman's womb on Dec. 16, 2004, at Stinnett's home in Skidmore.
Montgomery, 39, was arrested the day after the killing in her hometown of Melvern, Kan., where she was showing off the baby as her own.
Montgomery's current husband, Kevin Montgomery, testified Tuesday that he didn't think it was strange when his wife called to say she had given birth and asked him to pick her and the baby up at a fast-food restaurant.
"I knew she didn't like hospitals and doctors," Kevin Montgomery said as he described meeting his wife and the newborn in the parking lot of a Long John Silver's in Topeka, Kan.
He said his wife told him she had delivered the infant earlier in the day at a nearby birthing center. He said the couple showed off the newborn the next day at a diner, bank, courthouse and the convenience store where Lisa Montgomery worked.
Carl Bowman testified that Lisa Montgomery's doctor had recommended she undergo the tubal ligation after their fourth child was born more than two months premature. The doctor feared Montgomery could not carry another pregnancy to term.
While Bowman was on the stand, the prosecution showed a form Lisa Montgomery signed before undergoing the surgery acknowledging she had been told the procedure was not reversible.
But she claimed she was pregnant twice after undergoing the procedure and before the couple split up, Bowman testified. She later remarried and claimed to be pregnant three other times, the last in 2004, witnesses testified.
"At that time, I told her I was going to expose her lies," Bowman said. He said he had planned to take Montgomery to court and use the faked pregnancy to gain custody of two of the couple's four children. A custody hearing was set for Jan. 25, 2005.
Bowman testified that in November 2004 he noticed Montgomery appeared more confident, and that she called him the day before Stinnett was killed.
"She said she was going to prove me wrong," he testified.
Kevin Montgomery also testified about his wife's two previous faked pregnancies during their marriage. The first time, she told him she was going to New Mexico to have an abortion, he said. The second time, she told him there was something wrong with the baby and she had donated its body to science.
Kevin Montgomery said a relative had told him Lisa Montgomery couldn't have any more children because she had undergone a tubal ligation. But he said he didn't understand what the term meant.
He also testified he had nothing to do with the killing. He said he is still married to Lisa Montgomery, and he wore his wedding ring in the courtroom.
His former wife, Lori Colwell, testified that she was skeptical when she heard about Lisa Montgomery's pregnancy in 2004.
Colwell also testified that her former husband has poor social skills and is easily manipulated.
Prosecutors plan to seek the death penalty if Montgomery is convicted of kidnapping resulting in death. She has pleaded not guilty, and her lawyers are pursuing an insanity defense.