Four police officers converged on an Ohio home last year in response to a frantic 911 call. The then 10-year-old girl and her sibling witnessed their father killing their mother. When officers entered the home, they made their way to the master bedroom. What they saw led to numerous felony charges being filed against the distraught children’s father.

Recently, the man’s trial began with the playing of the 911 tape. The daughter can be heard telling dispatchers that her father had a knife and he was killing her mother. Police arrived at the residence within five minutes of the call. An officer attempted to stem the flow of blood from the victim and called for a helicopter to transport her to a hospital. She did not survive long enough to board the helicopter.

The Ohio man was charged with several felonies, including murder, aggravated murder, kidnapping and assault. He also faces one count of misdemeanor domestic violence. At a hearing before the trial, the man attempted to plead insanity, but the judge rejected his plea since officers claimed he was lucid and cooperative on the night in question.

His defense counsel is not offering any alternative theories to the woman’s death. He is arguing, however, that the murder was not premeditated. Sometimes, the evidence against an individual is so overwhelming that the fact he or she committed the crime cannot be disputed. At that point, the strategy may shift to obtaining a lesser sentence for the client by establishing that the prosecution has not proved beyond a reasonable doubt the elements of the felony charges before the court.

Source: New York Daily News, “Twinsburg, Ohio girl to 911: ‘My daddy’s murdering my mom.’“, Nicole Hensley, March 26, 2014