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2 aunts testify in Oxnard teen murder trial

August 5, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
Teen murder defendant Brandon McInerney was physically abused by his father for years. That's what one of the aunts testified in court Friday.

Csorba says in addition to sometimes sitting on McInerney until he couldn't breathe, pulling his thumb back until he screamed and punching him in the face, her brother would severely punish his son as if he was in the military.

"Billy, not being in the military still had this wanting to always be in the military and treating Brandon like he was in the military and punishment you know and that's just how he thought kids should be punished," said Csorba.

Another aunt, Maura McInerney, took the witness stand as well Friday. She says she also witnessed Billy McInerney abuse his son. Maura McInerney says about a year before Brandon shot and killed 15-year-old Larry King in an 8th grade classroom in Oxnard in 2008, she saw Brandon's father get so mad at him, he beat him with his fists.

"Brandon was late coming back to the beach house, and they pulled up to our dad's, to our house, and Billy was under the influence and he hit Brandon in his nose and broke his nose," said Maura McInerney. "I believe Brandon had a bloody nose or a broken nose, or, I don't recall exactly what had happened, but he was, he did have physical."

McInerney's lawyers are arguing that his troubled childhood was part of the reason he shot Larry King. McInerney's charged with first degree murder and a hate crime in the 2008 killing of King. Prosecutors believe McInerney murdered King because he was gay. Defense attorneys are hoping to convince the jury to opt for manslaughter, not murder.

The prosecution wrapped up its case more than a week ago. The case is now in the hands of the defense.

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