Mother testifies about 8-year-old Florida girl's abduction

Meanwhile the defense asked the judge to declare mistrial because of Rao's tearful display but the judge refused

Instead, Perrywinkle admitted to loading Cherish and her two other daughters into Smith's van after he promised to spend a $100 Walmart gift card on clothes for the kids.

Surveillance footage from the store caught the image of Smith and Cherish exiting, the girl skipping out behind him. "He was giving my 8-year-old too much attention".

Rayne Perrywinkle looks at defendant Donald Smith as she takes the witness stand Monday, Feb. 12, 2018, at the Duval County Courthouse in Jacksonville, Fla., on the opening day of Smith's murder trial of Perrywinkle's daughter, Cherish Perrywinkle, in 2013.

During opening statement's Monday, Florida State Attorney Melissa Nelson called Perrywinkle's death "brutal and tortured".

Cherish Perrywinkle's remains were so disfigured, Jacksonville chief medical examiner Dr Valerie Rao had to stop her testimony when photos were displayed.

Rayne Perrywinkle said some 20 minutes later, she realized the McDonald's inside the Walmart was closed and she began to panic. Perrywinkle's mother called 911 after she suspected Smith had left with the girl.

Smith is charged with first-degree murder, kidnapping and rape. She is heard telling a dispatcher, "I feel like a fool", and saying she couldn't remember what Smith was wearing or what his license plate was, Bourne tweeted.

If the panel finds Smith guilty, the jurors will be asked to sentence him to death.

"I fear for the child's future living with Ms Perrywinkle", wrote evaluator Robert Wood.

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She told the court that Cherish sustained severe injuries all over her body from being strangled with a piece of clothing and raped.

"Why in the world would he take my little girl?" I don't understand why he would leave right now unless he's going to rape her and kill her.

She testified that she, and her three daughters, including Cherish, first went to a dollar store that June 21, 2013.

She said Cherish's brutalised body would later be found in a creek. When Smith was arrested, he was allegedly wet from the waist down.

"Cherish did not die quickly, and she did not die easily".

Rozier testified he followed Smith's van because he thought his father-in-law, whom he was trying to meet at Walmart, might be in the van.

Schlax indicated her team would be questioning Perrywinkle, but Smith later declined to have them cross-examine her. He was arrested in 1977 for exposing himself in the presence of a minor, spent a year in jail, put on probation, then imprisoned for 14 months after violating that probation.

A medical examiner fought back tears today as the graphic details surrounding the rape and murder of 8-year-old Cherish Perrywinkle were presented in a Florida courtroom. Later, he was convicted in for posing as a member of the Department of Children and Family services so he could get access to a child.



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