Jury weighing whether Devault should be sentenced to death - Dallas News | myFOXdfw.com

Jury weighing whether Devault should be sentenced to death

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PHOENIX (KSAZ) -

In a courtroom, Wednesday, two jurors started crying as Marissa Devault's young daughters took the stand.

They told the jury their dad beat their mom regularly.

It was a rare show of emotion from a jury that also convicted Devault of first degree murder.
    
The jury will soon decide if Devault should spend the rest of her life in prison or be sentenced to death.

A tough decision especially after hearing Devault's young daughters talk about the abuse they witnessed at home.
    
The judge ordered all cameras shut off as Devault's daughters read letters they'd written to the court.
    
One daughter wrote about seeing her dad hitting her mom, break their toys, and punching walls. She said, "I know she made a decision to kill him, but there are things you don't know nobody knew what was going on in our home".

At least two jurors's eyes filled with tears.

Then Devault's youngest daughter tried to read her letter but was crying so hard she could not finish. An attorney read it for her, it said, "I know it was bad in the house but having two parents alive is better than one".

This morning a child abuse expert also took the stand and told the jury; Devault grew up in an abused home when she was a child.

Devault claims she was molested by three different men as a kid before her stepfather started abusing her too.

Prosecutors asked the expert if it was possible Devault was making-up the stories of abuse because she does not want to be put to death.

"No mental health professional has the ability to tell if someone is lying, but her description of those events are consistent with what I've heard similar victims describe," said Dr. John Conte.

Testimony will continue tomorrow. The jury should start deliberating on life or death next week.

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