Trial begins for man accused of trying to kill baby

Sarah Fuller
Sarah Fuller
Pulumataala Eli
Pulumataala Eli
David Bettencourt
David Bettencourt

By Minna Sugimoto - bio | email

HONOLULU (KHNL) - Trial began Thursday for an Oahu man accused of trying to kill his infant daughter two years ago. Pulumataala Eli is charged with attempted murder.

The baby's mother, who was 16 years old at the time, was the first to testify.

Sarah Fuller says she and her boyfriend, Eli, were in their van at Ala Moana Beach Park, when Eli became irritated and started blaming their seven-month-old daughter for the problems in their relationship. When baby Alice began crying, the defendant allegedly hit and threw her.

"He grabbed her and threw her into the back," Fuller said. "He kept saying it's 'cause of her."

"There's nothing happy about this case," David Bettencourt, defense attorney, said. "But our evidence will show that the prosecution can not prove that this was attempted murder."

Prosecutors say Alice suffered permanent brain damage.

The trial continues Friday.