Reiser watered driveway after wife disappeared, neighbor says

A neighbor of murder defendant Hans Reiser testified Thursday that he thought it was strange when he spotted Reiser watering his driveway for half an hour late at night two days after Reiser’s estranged wife Nina disappeared.

Taking the witness stand in Reiser’s trial on charges that he murdered Nina Reiser, Jack Stabb, who lives across the street from the house on Exeter Drive where Reiser lived with his mother, said “it was an oddity for Hans” because he and his wife “never really saw him [Reiser] participating in exterior activities” at his house even though they’re outside often.

Stabb, who testified that he saw Reiser sometime around 11 p.m. Sept. 5, 2006, said, “I just thought: What is he doing?”

Stabb said he also thought it was odd that Reiser “looked like he was dressed for winter” and was wearing what looked like a hooded hunting jacket even though it was a hot summer night.

Stabb said he was only dressed in shorts and a T-shirt and was barefooted as he watered the plants on the deck of his house, which overlooks Reiser’s house.

Stabb said that whenhe left his house the next morning, he looked at Reiser’s driveway and there still were needles on his driveway.

He said that if Reiser was trying to clean his driveway, “he did a terrible job.”

Hans Reiser, a 43-year-old computer engineer, and Nina married in 1999, but Nina filed for divorce in August of 2004 and they had been undergoing bitter divorce proceedings for more than two years at the time she disappeared. She was last seen alive when she dropped the couple’s two children off at Hans Reiser’s home shortly after 2 p.m. on Sept. 3, 2006.

Nina Reiser’s body has never been found, but Hans Reiser who has pleaded not guilty, was charged with murdering her after Oakland police said they found biological and trace evidence tying him to her death.

His attorney, William DuBois has suggested that Nina might still be alive and in hiding in Russia, where she was born and were she was trained as a physician. The couple’s children are living with Nina’s mother in Russia.

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