The mother of a battered child testified Thursday that her son was killed while in the care of her boyfriend.
Nancy Delgado, 21, wiped tears away when she saw photographs of her battered child."I don't remember him having so many bruises," she whispered.
Frank L. Archuleta, Delgado's boyfriend and the father of her 2-month-old daughter, is charged with second-degree murder in the beating death of Preston Sherman, 2.
The toddler died from battered child's syndrome on July 31 after being left alone with the 29-year-old defendant.
During Delgado's testimony, defense attorney Martin Gravis asked for a mistrial after a reporter told him that an employee with the Weber County attorney's office appeared to be coaching the witness.
Second District Judge David Roth denied the motion but prohibited the employee from coming back into the courtroom.
Delgado testified that on July 31 she was home alone with her son when Archuleta came in drunk. She said that a couple of hours later, Archuleta told her to go around the corner to get some hamburgers.
The woman said she was going to take her son with her but that he had wet his pants so she put him on the toilet and left.
A few minutes later, Delgado said a neighbor came in the fast-food restaurant where she had gone and told her something was wrong with her son. She went back home and then to the hospital where she discovered that the child was dead.
Delgado said that she and her son had been living with Archuleta since November 1987 and that the defendant openly abused her son. However, she said that she had never seen Archuleta beat the boy but that Sherman had bruises after being left alone with the defendant.
She said that Archuleta would get upset when her son would wet his pants and that the defendant would spank the young boy almost every day.
Delgado also said that Archuleta would get upset when she and the boy were affectionate toward each other.
"When he (Sherman) wanted to give me a kiss good night, he (Archuleta) wouldn't let him," Delgado said. "He thought he was a sissy."
Last March, Delgado said the state took her son away because of child abuse, so she made Archuleta move out so she could regain custody.
But after Preston was returned to her care, she and the boy moved back in with Archuleta and the abuse continued, she testified.