A jury trial continues for a Watertown man accused of killing a 14-month-old girl.
Twenty-six-year-old Jay Barse faces a charge of second degree murder in connection with the death of Serenity Sea Boy.
She died in March after doctors treated her for head trauma. Police arrested Barse at the time, saying he was responsible for her death. He was the live-in boyfriend of the baby's mother.
Barse has pleaded not guilty.
The prosecution says Barse admitted to hitting Sea Boy in the head. The defense argues the admitted hit wasn't the one that killed the 14-month-old.
Defense attorney Roger Ellyson told jurors Barse was arrested and charged with a crime he didn't commit. He also said Sea Boy was neglected and abused by her mother Sherry Scherer who, along with Barse, used meth.
But Codington County States Attorney Dawn Elshere says Barse is guilty. She told the jury Barse was with the 14-month-old in a Watertown house when the girl's mother was at work.
She said the baby was fine when her mother left, but less than an hour later Sea Boy was in the hospital fighting for her life. She died two days later, Elshere said, with an autopsy showing brain, neck and eye injuries.
Elshere also said Barse told police a heavy book and a coat hanger fell off a VCR onto the child's head four days prior to her going to the hospital. But police say he later told them he made up that story. And they say he admitted to hitting the girl in the back of the head.
Even though Barse admitted to that action, Ellyson said Barse is accused of a crime that was committed four days later. So, he argues, Barse's confession doesn't link him to the death.
The prosecution called three people to the stand Tuesday, including a Watertown Police Officer who was first on the scene.
If the jury finds him guilty, Barse could face life in prison.