Child Abuse Defendant Testifies In Pennington County Trial

Jan 7, 2016

Pennington County Courthouse
Credit Photo by Victoria Wicks

A Rapid City defendant accused of child abuse testified on his own behalf Thursday, Dec. 7, before a Pennington County jury. Patrick White Face is accused of injuring his infant daughter on two separate occasions about five years ago. White Face told jurors he did not cause his baby's injuries, and that his version of what happened has remained consistent since the day the injuries occurred. SDPB's Victoria Wicks is following this week-long trial.

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The Pennington County trial for Patrick White Face comes to a close on Friday, Dec. 8.

Prosecutors are accusing White Face of causing two injuries to his infant daughter, a broken leg on March 24, 2011, and brain damage four days later. The state contends that a baby's leg would not have broken in the manner White Face described. And they say he obstructed the baby's air supply while he was alone in a room with the child and her 18-month-old brother.

A defense medical expert testified on Thursday that the child's brain damage and organ failure is consistent with a sustained non-convulsive seizure that dropped the baby's glucose and oxygen levels.

Another medical expert testifies for the defense on Friday, to address the baby's broken leg, and then lawyers will make closing arguments before the jury deliberates.