New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - April 8, 2005, New Braunfels, Texas
Page 8A — HeraldZeitung — Friday, April 8, 2005
CONTINUED FROM Page 1A
Man faces up to life in prison if convicted
the 12 jurors and two alternates. If the jury convicts him today, it will also decide his sentence.
Thursday, Dr. Madison Lowry, a McKenna Memorial Hospital physician who treated the boy, said he could face further surgery and complications into adulthood from his injury.
“Do you have an opinion, due to scar tissue or nerve damage, as to whether (the boy) will suffer any longstanding effects as a result of the injury?” co-defense counsel Pat Moran asked.
“I can’t say definitely, but I think there’s a significant chance,” Lowry answered.
In the prosecution’s summation, attorney Von Bunn went right after Fierro.
She walked across the courtroom, stood in front of
the defendant and pointed at him.
“This is what a child abuser looks like — this man right here!” Bunn said. “He’s not just a child abuser, but somebody who engaged in the sadistic torture of a little boy — a lithe boy you met here.”
The alleged torturous acts lasted over the course of a weekend, beginning with the genital injury, which went untreated for three days, Bunn said — and could have caused infection or gangrene.
She pointed to enlarged photos of the boy’s injuries that were projected onto a screen.
“The boy told you who did it,” Bunn said.
As to the belt beatings, Bunn told jurors that three neighbors witnessed one of them when Fierro allegedly held the boy outside while his girlfriend, Michele May, 41, beat him at least 25 times with a leather belt.
May pleaded guilty in June and was sentenced to three
years in state prison.
“At first, they thought they were beating a dog,” Bunn said.
Two neighbors called 9-1-1 and New Braunfels police responded.
“We have to thank God for that beating that night,” Bunn said. “Because if it hadn’t happened, nobody would have known what happened to (him).”
Bunn acknowledged that the boy hadn’t initially given investigators all the details of what he’d been through, saying he only did so later when he felt safe. Some details, she said, he had wavered on or couldn’t remember. Sometimes the witnesses had disagreed on other details.
“The defense wants this little boy to remember every little thing he told every single person,” Bunn said. “How reasonable is that? He has never one time changed his
story. He said Ray put him in the doghouse in front of his house — everybody could see it. The night he was hurt — in January — he was outside with no clothes on. He said he was threatened with a
knife by the defendant. He was beaten by the defendant. He was tied to a bed. He showed you. Was it discipline or some medical treatment for his (injury)? No. It was part of the sadistic torture this man put him through.” In the first part of the defense’s final argument, Moran pounded away at the prosecution’s case, charging Bunn and co-counsel Ed Springer had only presented part of the story.
“Their case is a case of contradictions,” Moran said. “I would submit to you that when a man is on trial for his life, given what we know about wrongful convictions
in this state, it is not nitpicking when we point out the inability of a witness to tell the same story twice.”
Moran described the kinds of injuries a leather belt can cause. The defense’s theory about the genital injury is it was accidentally caused by the boy’s mother when she was belting him.
The three witnesses who saw the beating the night police were called are liars, Moran said, pointing to inconsistencies in their stories.
“There’s something very creepy about what’s going on here,” he said. “The testimony was full of lies.”
Defense attorney Anthony Cantrell completed the argument, saying that all the details about the doghouse, the knife, the bed and so on were brought by the prosecution — without charges they could have Filed — as a way of prejudicing the jury against his client.
“They’re red herrings to make you prejudiced so you
don’t consider what’s before you,” Cantrell said.
The attorney added that some of the witnesses, horrified by the boy’s injuries, were also prejudiced against Fierro — and looking for someone to make pay.
“Even the doctors and nurses were biased by the sight of these injuries,” Cantrell said. “They want persecution, not prosecution.”
The boy lied in his testimony. Cantrell said — trying to protect his mother by blaming her boyfriend.
“He said he lied to his mother. He lied in school. He lied to his nurses and caseworkers, and I hate to say it, but he lied to you,” Cantrell said. “The courageous part for you now is to do the right thing — to consider the evidence. The prosecution has not met its burden of proving this case beyond a reasonable doubt.”
Deliberations are ached-uled to begin at 9 a.m. at the Comal County Courthouse.
New Braunfels Theatre Company
Annie Get Your Gun
Saturday, April S, 2005, 12:00 to 5:00 P.M. Sunday, April IO, 2005, 2:00 to 6:00 P.M.
Brauntex Performing Arts Theatre 230 W. San Antonio Street flr3jj
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Bring Sheet Music or Karaoke style accompam
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On April 9th, $92*10
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S 5.00 Audition Fee Non members
Live RafficT Broadcast from Ipm-4pm PRIZES///
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northwest Crossing In north new Braunfels is easy to find!!! (830) 609-6128
Even more fun in year two, join us for
A healthy walk for kid’s shoes called
benefiting Communities in Schools.
A 5K/10K WALK
through scenic New Braunfels.
Saturday, April 9th 8 AM to 12 Noon
Tickets $5, sold day of event only.
Join NBU SAFEhaven volunteers and hundreds of adults and children in this second annual healthy walk for a good cause.
Well begin at Landa Haus in Landa Park, anytime between 8:00 a.m. and Noon. Choose the scenic 3.2 mile or 6.4 mile routes, walking at your own pace. Totally new course from last year!
Celebrate with live music, and answer our fun Safety Scavenger Hunt questions for a free prize! Complimentary lunch provided by New Braunfels Smokehouse, Sac N Pac, and NBU!
The SAFEhaven Kinderschuhe-Volksmarsch is a sanctioned event in partnership with the New Braunfels Marsch- und Wandergruppe. Walk proceeds provide new school shoes for low-income children in our community. Walk on!
Communities In Schools
Rayless SheeSeurce i sKttwe
See www.nbutexas.com or call 830.629.8486 for details.
SAf fcna /en is a /oiur
idenis NBU Ne.v Braunfels through and through