Doctor Cross-Examined in Nixzmary Brown Trial

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Under questioning from a prosecutor, Dr. Charles Wetli maintained that while Nixzmary Brown was abused, she would not have died without being struck in the head.

The testimony conflicts with the prosecution's assertion that the child died from a combination of head trauma and the regular beatings she endured.

Defense attorneys maintain that while Rodriguez did abuse her, he never struck her in the head. That injury they say, was inflicted by the child's mother, also charged with murder.

Defense attorneys have tried to down play that Nixzmary was underweight. But shown images of the emaciated 7-year-old, Dr. Wetli agreed with prosecutors that she appeared malnourished.

For WNYC, I'm Cindy Rodriguez.