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Posted: 6:37 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2013
By Jason Stoogenke
CHARLOTTE, N.C. —
Jurors in the trial of a man accused of beating his toddler to death heard the father admit to it Wednesday.
Andre Hampton walked into court, but it was a video of him roughly four years ago that took center stage during the trial Wednesday. The jury finished watching the taped confession he gave police in 2008 and then, at the defense's request, watched the entire three-hour video again. In the video, Hampton admits hitting 23-month-old Elijah with a toothbrush, hairbrush and belt about 90 times over at least a four-hour period, all because Elijah refused to eat his soup. Ultimately, Hampton had his 6-year-old daughter, who was in the motel room with them, call 911. Hampton admitted losing control and when the detective, William Ward, asked him, "At any point, did you think that you had killed your son? That he was dead?" Hampton said, "He was slightly breathing. He was slightly breathing." Then Ward said, "I'm going to tell you something that's not going to be easy. Your son is dead." The most emotional point in the trial Wednesday came when prosecutors showed jurors about 10 pictures of Elijah's injuries. At least three jurors cried looking at the bruises to his head, torso and hands, and a deputy handed them tissues. A judge decided to keep cameras out of the trial. Prosecution could rest Thursday.
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