Prosecutors present final witness in baby killing trial

Posted: Sunday, April 06, 2003

KETCHIKAN (AP) -- A forensic pathologist testified Friday that 7-week-old Adrian Fackrell's death was a homicide.

Dr. Brian Mazirm, an associate medical examiner for Seattle-King County, Wash., was the prosecution's final witness in the murder trial of Josh Rowden, 17.

Mazirm performed an autopsy on the body of Adrian Fackrell after the baby died April 27 in Seattle at Children's Hospital. He has been transported from Ketchikan on April 16.

The state contends that Rowden subjected the baby to abusive treatment more than once during the last four or five weeks of his life.

Mazirm testified that blunt force injuries or violent shaking preceded infections and meningitis that affected the baby's brain.

Responding to questions from Ketchikan District Attorney Stephen West, Mazirm also said his examination provided evidence that at least one of the baby's leg bones had been fractured and was healing at the time of death.

Sue Crocker, one of Rowden's two defense attorneys, challenged Mazirm's use of certain citations from medical literature to bolster his findings. Mazirm defended his report and said his conclusion was based on the literature and his own medical knowledge.

Crocker also elicited Mazirm's testimony that none of the baby's ribs or internal organs had been damaged.

The defense is scheduled to begin its case at 10 a.m. Monday in Ketchikan Superior Court.

Rowden has pleaded innocent to charges of first and second degree murder and manslaughter. The three charges represent different theories of the case, according to West.

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