Jury Recesses For Day After Emotional Closing - NewsChannel5.com | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Jury Recesses For Day After Emotional Closing

The murder case of two members of a middle Tennessee church is now in the hands of a jury. Sonia and Joseph Smith worshipped at the Remnant Fellowship Church in Brentwood over the internet, and are accused of killing their 8-year-old son 2003.

The jury instruction process took longer than anyone ever expected. The jury got the case at about 4:30 p.m. Georgia time after what some called shocking closing arguments.

Prosecutor Eleanor Dixon didn't mince words in her closing argument in the case of Sonia and Joseph Smith.

This was the last time to make a lasting impression on the jury.

"If you are still asking yourself right now how did he die with all the evidence you have heard, how can you convict?" defense attorney Manny Aurora said. "When we make decisions on a notion sometimes, they're on first impressions. They often turn out to be wrong."

He wanted to soften the blow of pictures that showed the alleged abused Josef by driving home his theory the marks came from eczema.

"
Who would have thought this was eczema until a doctor explained it to you? It looks like horrible cigarette burns or something like that," Aurora said.

Dixon told the jury it's hard to believe the medical expert who came up with the eczema theory.

"
I like to call those witnesses ‘jukebox witnesses,' because when you put in your money, they will play any song you will want to hear," Dixon said.

The parents then watched as the state went over its theory the boy suffocated in a box.

The defense said the prosecution's suffocation theory shouldn't even come into play.

"
It's because the box didn't happen," Aurora said.

Then came the moment that caused the Smith's to break down in tears -- Dixon brought a birthday cake with eight candles into the courtroom.

"
You know what s not on there? One more candle for his ninth birthday," she said.

It was too much for the parents to handle. The jury decided to call it quits for the day at 5:00 p.m. They will begin again Thursday morning.

More than a dozen members of the church have been in the courtroom during this trial .

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