4-year-old's alleged killer bought first-aid supplies before hospital visit
Posted March 17, 2014
Smithfield, N.C. — A Smithfield man accused of torturing and raping his girlfriend's 4-year-old daughter was recorded on security video buying first-aid supplies at a local Walmart hours before he ended up taking the child to an emergency room for injuries witnesses in his capital murder trial have described as horrifying.
Testifying Monday in Jonathan Richardson's trial for the July 19, 2010, death of Teghan Skiba, Johnston County sheriff's investigator Michael Lambert said the early-morning shopping trip happened at 2 a.m., three days before the girl's death.
Lambert testified that Teghan was not with Richardson in the video, nor was she with him in several other security videos of the 25-year-old buying various other items ranging from an air mattress to beer.
Johnston County prosecutors seeking the death penalty against Richardson contend he locked Teghan in a shed behind his grandparents' home and abused her for 10 days while her mother was out of town.
When he took her to Johnston Memorial Hospital on July 16, 2010, she had more than 60 bite marks, as well as cuts and bruises, covering her body, witnesses have testified.
Another witness testified Monday that Teghan's DNA was found on the wired ends of an electrical cord that prosecutors believe he used to whip her.
Although her injuries were numerous, Teghan died from blunt force injuries to her skull, according to an autopsy report.
In addition to first-degree murder, Richardson faces charges of felony child abuse, sexual offense with a child and kidnapping.
Defense attorneys don't deny that Richardson physically abused Teghan, but they maintain that he is innocent of sexually assaulting her.
They blame the girl's death on Richardson's lack of parenting skills as well as his undiagnosed mental problems and his own experiences of being abused as a child.
Prosecutors could rest their case on Tuesday. Monday marked the fourth week of testimony in case.