Defense requests mistrial in McTear murder case - WFLA News Channel 8

Defense requests mistrial in McTear murder case

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Richard McTear Richard McTear
Jasmine Bedwell on the stand Jasmine Bedwell on the stand
TAMPA, FL (WFLA) -

The judge in the trial of a man accused of throwing a baby out of a car recessed early on Monday afternoon when defense attorneys requested a mistrial.

Jasmine Bedwell, the mother of 3-month-old victim Emmanuel Murray, referred to alleged statements made by Richard McTear, which the judge had previously ruled could not be said in front of the jury.

In response to a question, Bedwell said from the witness stand: "He wanted to come over and I told him no, and he said he was going to shoot my baby in the face, he said he was going to kill both of us."

The defense immediately moved for a mistrial. In pretrial motions, Judge Fuente ruled that statements made on the phone by McTear were not admissible. The defense maintains the statement is hearsay evidence and is highly inflammatory for a jury to hear.

Judge Fuente asked attorneys for both sides to research the question, and sent the jury home for the day. Court will reconvene Tuesday morning at 9:30 a.m.

McTear is accused of killing his girlfriend's baby by throwing the child onto Interstate 275 in May 2009.

Prosecutor Ron Gale says McTear is a murderer.

In opening statements Monday, Gale told jurors McTear beat his former girlfriend, Jasmine Bedwell, and bit her at least five times.

Gale told the jury, "The baby, at this time is not making any noise, is either sleeping or is just sitting there without making any noise in his car carrier and Mr. McTear takes a can of soda and he walks over to the baby and pours this can of soda in the baby's face and the baby starts to cry."

Gale told jurors McTear threw the baby across the apartment as he was sitting in a car carrier and then fled with the child.

Gale says Hillsborough County Sheriff's deputies began showing up on the scene, but the baby was soon found along the side of I-275 by a news photographer who was driving to work.

The state maintains McTear threw the baby from his car and that 3-month-old Emmanuel Murray died of multiple fractures to his skull.

Defense attorney Mike Peacock says no one saw the baby being thrown onto the interstate the night the child died. Peacock told jurors in his opening remarks that the child's mother Jasmine Bedwell has given numerous and conflicting statements about who took her baby.

Peacock says Bedwell told a teacher at an adult education facility that her baby was taken from her at University Mall the day before he died. Peacock says Bedwell also told other mysterious people, "they" took her baby.

"You will have to believe the statements of Jasmine Bedwell and that will require you to resolve the conflicts in many of her statements," said peacock.

Peacock told jurors, they do not know who killed Murray, but it was not Richard McTear.

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