Jurors who must decide whether Aric Shayne Woodard is guilty of fatally beating a 2-year-old boy he was baby-sitting heard from a second forensic pathologist, and this doctor testified for the defense.
"My conclusion was the child died in the bathtub of drowning," Dr. Richard Bindie testified Wednesday afternoon. He is director of pathology at the Schuylkill Medical Center in Pottsville, Schuylkill County.
Earlier this week, Dr. Samuel Land of Allentown's Forensic Pathology Associates testified at length to the numerous injuries he documented while performing an autopsy of toddler Jaques Twinn.
They included injuries to the child's brain, face, ear, stomach, back, buttocks and legs, as well as internal abdominal injuries that included a badly lacerated liver.
Under questioning by defense attorney Joanne Floyd, Land told jurors the wounds were the cause of Jaques' death and caused by blunt-force trauma.
But Bindie said at least some of those injuries were inadvertently caused by the numerous people - both at York Hospital and prior to Jaques arriving there - who tried to revive the boy with CPR.
"You see bruising on the skin many times with cardio-pulmonary resuscitation," he said. "It was aggressive and it was prolonged. They just didn't want to give up on this poor child."
He said he believes the liver lacerations also were caused by aggressive CPR.
During cross-examination by first assistant district attorney Jennifer Russell, Bindie acknowledged some of the external bruising and injuries could not be explained away by CPR.
The case: Woodard, 40, of West Jackson Street, is facing a possible death penalty if convicted of first-degree murder in the Nov. 7, 2011, death of Jaques.
He regularly baby-sat Jaques and the boy's 1-year-old sister, according to York City Police, who said Woodard was watching the siblings at a home in the 100 block of West Boundary Avenue when Jaques was beaten.
Police allege Woodard, who goes by Shayne, left the children alone to go to a nearby store and that when he returned, he assaulted the child after realizing Jaques had smeared feces on the kitchen carpet.
Woodard had feelings for the children's mother, Hayley Twinn, but she did not reciprocate, according to lead Detective Al Clarkson.
"(Woodard) became frustrated that day," Clarkson has said. "He knew she was out with somebody else, and he realized she was using him to watch her kids while she was out with another guy."
Defendant's words: Also on Wednesday, jurors watched about three hours of Woodard's videotaped interviews with detectives.
He repeatedly denied beating Jaques, but admitted he snatched the boy by the ear and smacked him because Jaques had soiled himself. Woodard said he considered "JaJa" his son.
Late Wednesday afternoon, Floyd said a decision had not yet been made as to whether Woodard will take the stand in his own defense.
The jury is expected to begin deliberations at some point Thursday.
Floyd informed the court that she intends to ask that jurors be allowed to consider involuntary manslaughter as an alternative to first-degree murder.
-- Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at firstname.lastname@example.org.