Live testimony resumes today in the murder trial of Michael P. McCarthy.
McCarthy stands accused of murdering his girlfriend’s two-year-old child, hiding the little girl’s body in a refrigerator, and then dumping her body into a connecting channel off Boston Harbor. A passer-by eventually found the girl’s body. The two-year-old girl was first known as “Baby Doe” while Boston-area authorities underwent the difficult process of attempting to identify her.
Later, Michael Sprinsky, a lifelong friend of the defendant’s, connected the “Baby Doe” case to real-life Bella Bond. He testified that Rachelle Bond, the girl’s mother, told him that the defendant murdered Bella.
Rachelle Bond testified that she saw the defendant punch the girl so hard that her body bounced off of a mattress. Bond testified that the girl was swollen and gray, and that despite attempts to perform CPR, she could not revive her daughter. She testified McCarthy then tried to kill her.
Rather than call police, she helped McCarthy hide the girl’s body, she testified, because she was afraid of him. Bond received a sentence of probation in return for her testimony. Defense attorneys spent days hammering her over inconsistencies in her stories and over her own failure to act to save her daughter.
A medical examiner testified that the mother’s version of the little girl’s death is “unlikely,” as it would have resulted in more damage to the girl’s chest and/or abdomen, including broken bones. However, he did say he believed the girl died from either suffocation or from a sharp blow to the heart. Her body did exhibit signs of bruising on her elbows, upper thighs, and stomach.
Testimony on Monday included readings from a book found in the defendant’s home. It discussed the devil and exorcism. Prosecutors and witnesses have said the defendant maintained strong interests in the occult. The state police detective who found the book was not able to say who checked it out from the library, however. Defense attorneys have argued that Rachelle Bond was the one interested in demons and the occult, though the defendant’s own friend (who linked him to the death of Bella Bond) said the defendant himself was the one with the interest.
The defendant claims he had nothing to do with the little girl’s disappearance and death. He claims that Bella simply wasn’t there one day, and that Rachelle Bond told him that social services workers had taken Bella away. McCarthy didn’t suspect anything suspicious because social services workers had already taken away Rachelle Bond’s two other children.
The trial may ultimately hinge on the credibility of the mother’s testimony, since she is the only one who claims to have seen McCarthy commit the crime.