As accused child stabber’s trial approaches close, defense capitalizes on evidence
As the Brooklyn Supreme Court trial for a man accused of stabbing a child to death and seriously injuring another in an East New York elevator approaches closing, the suspect’s attorney used the lead investigator’s testimony to outline his arguments on Wednesday.
Detective Michael Narsingh took the stand first thing in the morning at Daniel St. Hubert’s trial. The 30-year-old is accused of murdering P.J. Avitto, 7, and stabbing then 6-year-old Mikayla Capers 16 times with a steak knife in the elevator of their building at the Boulevard Houses on June 1, 2014.
Defense attorney Howard Greenberg took the opportunity to go down a checklist of evidence he’s attacked since opening arguments of the trial.
While St. Hubert’s DNA alongside the children’s blood was found on the murder weapon dropped outside the building of the incident, a DNA expert previously testified that a mix of DNA was found on the knife.
“Did you know that there was more than one DNA profile obtained from the hit?” Greenberg asked Narsingh, who said he would have to look through 700 pages of documents to check.
Greenberg moved onto his next point, that out of at least 37 fingerprints that were lifted from the elevator area, none of them matched to St. Hubert. The detective admitted it to be true.
In a photo shown to jurors of the elevator, a pool of blood covers the floor, but no blood was found on any of St. Hubert’s personal items collected, including the clothes he was seen wearing on surveillance footage from the same day.
Previous testimony from witnesses who say they saw St. Hubert running from the scene before his June 4, 2014 arrest gave conflicting descriptions of his clothing, saying he was wearing a gray sweatshirt. Surveillance footage of St. Hubert leaving his home showed him in long shorts and a blue-purple T-shirt.
The only other surveillance footage — because there were no cameras on the scene — shows St. Hubert down the block from the incident a few minutes after.
Greenberg has said that during closing statements he intends to argue that a one-size-fits-all hat found in the bloody elevator belonged to the real killer, saying St. Hubert was never there. To verify the evidence, prosecutors were expected in the afternoon to recall Avitto’s mother — the first witness in the case — to confirm the hat was her son’s.
The cap however, was never tested for any DNA and was instead given to a city property clerk, according to previous testimony.
Charged with second-degree murder, attempted murder, assault and weapon possession, St. Hubert faces up to 50 years to life in prison if convicted.
Testimony was expected to continue Wednesday afternoon.
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