Jurors in the murder trial of Jorge DePina were shown a number of disturbing videos on Friday that prosecutors claim show his pattern of abuse against his 10-year-old daughter Aleida.
The defense does not contest that DePina physically abused the girl but argue their client did not cause the injury that led to her 2013 death.
DePina on Monday was emotionless in court. On Friday, he cried as the videos were played.
In one of them, a scene described by prosecutors during their opening statement played out. Aleida is in a squat position and gets yelled at before tape is put over her eyes and she cries as she is whipped.
The state medical examiner ruled the cause of her death to be blunt force trauma, specifically a perforated small intestine.
One of the Pawtucket detectives who worked on the case took the stand Friday, describing what he was told to look for in DePina’s home after the autopsy was performed. Detective David Silva said that based on Aleida’s injuries, the medical examiner told them to keep an eye out for “items that can be swung, hard metal plastic objects, items that can be used to tie or bind.”
“She told us to think outside the box,” Silva recalled. “Might not be traditional items that you would think would be used.”
In another video shown in court, Aleida is seen sitting on the floor with a bowl of food for several minutes. Appearing very weak, she doesn’t take a single bite then puts it down next to her and gingerly lays on the floor. Another video showed her doing hundreds of squats in her bedroom, at one point for eight minutes straight as her father walked in and out of the room.
DePina has been held without bail since 2014. The attorney general is seeking a sentence of life without parole.
More videos are expected to be shown to the jury when the trial resumes next week.