Thursday, April 3, 2014

Judge at capital murder trial for custodial dad says dad's testimony was coached (Honolulu, Hawaii)

Talk about killer daddy coddling. It took 9 YEARS to even get custodial dad NAEEM WILLIAMS to trial. And yes, he does sound coached. Give this guy an Academy Award. It's all lies...

Judge Warns Naeem Williams In Capital Murder Trial, Suspects Testimony Was Coached


Posted: 04/02/2014 8:09 pm EDT Updated: 04/03/2014 6:30 pm EDT

HONOLULU (AP) -- The judge presiding over the capital murder trial of a former Hawaii-based soldier accused of killing his 5-year-old daughter said Wednesday that it seems he was coached on how to testify. Naeem Williams returned to the witness stand to talk about beating his daughter Talia with a plastic ruler and a belt. Williams says he disciplined her for bathroom accidents.

When Williams started reflecting on what would have happened if he didn't bring Talia to live with him in Hawaii, the prosecution objected and U.S. District Judge J. Michael Seabright quickly sent the jury out of the courtroom.

Seabright said "retrospective testimony" is "very prejudicial to the government."

Williams had also testified that Talia came to live with him during a "chaotic" time in his marriage to the girl's stepmother, Delilah Williams.

"It seems to me he was coached to these things," Seabright said, noting that Williams' testimony mirrors what defense attorney John Philipsborn said in his opening statement.

Williams is being tried in federal court, which allows for him to face the death penalty even though Hawaii doesn't have capital punishment.

He spoke haltingly, looked down often and sounded like he was crying during his testimony. It's a marked difference from the testimony of his wife, who spoke clearly in detailing physical abuse they inflicted on Talia before she died in July 2005. Delilah Williams testified for the prosecution as part of a plea deal for a 20-year sentence.

Prosecutors say it was the former soldier who dealt a fatal blow so hard it left knuckle impressions on the child's chest.

During opening statements, Philipsborn said Talia came into the couple's lives as they were battling marital problems, and they weren't equipped to care for her.

Williams said he used the ruler and belt because that's how he was disciplined as a child by his aunt and father. But the beatings Talia received were much more severe, he said: "I got whipped a lot but not as much as Talia did."

He said he eventually started using his hands to hit Talia in the back and chest. He said he also shoved her down, sometimes so hard she would remain on the ground and have "seizure-like motions."

On Tuesday, Williams testified that he sought custody of his daughter Talia out of a sense of obligation after his grandmother grew too ill to continue caring for her in South Carolina. He said that before he got custody of Talia, he had never fed a child or spent any significant time alone with a child.

He said Wednesday that his wife suggested they send her back, but Williams said they couldn't because of the signs of abuse on Talia's body. "There was no way we could send her back the way she was," he said.

Williams also testified about withholding food from his daughter and removing all furniture from her room as other forms of punishment.

After a lunch break, he was expected to testify about the day she died.