Dad takes witness stand in microwaved baby case

DAYTON — Terrell Talley asked not to see the autopsy photographs of his daughter. The assistant Montgomery County prosecutor told him he had to show them to him.

Talley, the father of Paris Talley, testified Thursday in the trial of his former girlfriend, China Arnold, who is accused of killing the 28-day-old baby in a microwave on Aug. 30, 2005. If convicted of aggravated murder, Arnold could face the death penalty.

Talley told prosecutor David Franceschelli that he “made money by selling drugs” at the time he lived with Arnold in the since-demolished Parkside Homes housing complex. He said that on Aug. 29, 2005, the couple fought about the baby’s paternity.

After leaving Paris and Arnold’s three sons with Talley’s sister, Arnold and Talley picked up a bottle of Bacardi 151 and went to a park, where they fought. The couple returned to the apartment and Talley said he went to “The Spot” an apartment where he sold drugs, including crack cocaine and marijuana.

When he went home in the early hours of Aug. 30, where he found Arnold and the baby lying on the couch by her feet. He first lay down on another couch, but then curled up next to Arnold.

When Arnold woke up to get her other kids ready for school, Talley said he went to wake the baby up, but saw a red burn mark on her face.

“She was cold,” Talley said. “Her body was cold and stiff.”

They took the baby to the Children’s Medical Center. Talley said he demanded to know what happened “cause she was the last one there with my baby all night.”

Arnold responded on at least two occasions “I killed my baby,” Talley said.

Talley said that Arnold told him several times that if he hadn’t cheated on her, his baby would still be alive.

An emergency room physician on duty when China Arnold brought her baby to Children’s Medical Center testified Thursday that he was shocked when Arnold expressed surprise that her baby had been burned.

Dr. William Matre said he immediately saw the baby had visible burns on her face, trunk and limbs. But when he asked Arnold about the burns, Arnold responded with a question: my baby has been burned?

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