Medical examiner describes 3-year-old's injuries during murder trial

Medical examiner describes 3-year-old's injuries during murder trial
(Photo Source: WMC Action News 5)
(Photo Source: WMC Action News 5)

(WMC) – A Memphis father charged with killing his son and leaving his body in a dumpster returned to court Friday for day four of his murder trial.

Maurice Brown Sr.'s chin rested in his hand as jurors looked at the photos of his murdered 3-year-old son, who was found in a dumpster, buried in garbage.

Courtroom visitors were given a stern warning from the judge about any emotional outbursts during the most grisly, gruesome testimony of the day.

Tennessee Bureau of Investigation special agent Donna Nelson presented boxes of evidence collected at Brown's home. The boxes consisted of blood and DNA evidence, samples taken from the bathroom walls, floor, closet, and even the pipes. Only Brown's blood and DNA were positively identified in some areas, but on a yellow bath towel, the presence of blood and DNA from both Brown and the little boy were found.

Lieutenant Tony Mullins, with Memphis Police Department, described the condition of the 3-year-old's body. He said when he found it, it was upside down, covered in garbage in the dumpster.

Medical Examiner Karen Chancellor performed the autopsy on Maurice Brown Jr.'s body. She had to distinguish between the toddler's injuries and postmortem decomposition.

"It's difficult to determine what happened in life and what happens after death," said Chancellor, who said the boy had two injuries on the back of his head and was bleeding on both sides of the brain before being left in the dumpster. "That indicates that there was injury to the head."

The 3-year-old also had a lacerated liver.

"The source of that laceration was a tear of the liver, there were lacerations of the ribs on the right and left," Chancellor added.

She concluded that the cause of the little boy's death was blunt force: a brutal beating all over his body.

The medical examiner was the state's last witness. After she testified, court was called to a recess until Saturday at 8:30 a.m.

Maurice Brown Sr. is expected to be the only remaining witness to take the stand.

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