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Ex-soldier takes witness stand in death penalty case

Accused child killer Naeem J. Williams took the witness stand in his own defense Tuesday afternoon in U.S. District Court.

Williams, 34, is on trial for capital murder for the July 16, 2005, child abuse beating death of his 5-year-old daughter Talia.

He is facing the death penalty for killing a child through child abuse or as part of a practice and pattern of assault and torture.

Williams said he knew that his daughter had bowel and bladder control problems when he won custody of Talia in early-December 2004. He said his wife Delilah followed a routine to minimize the chances of Talia accidentally soiling herself.

He said Talia started soiling herself about a week after arriving in Hawaii from South Carolina.

"It wasn't a big deal to me. I considered it an accident," he said.

Williams said he talked to his daughter and told her to try to get to the bathroom next time.

By the end of the month Williams said he began to physically punish his daughter for soiling herself. The court session ended for the day before Williams told the jury how he punished his daughter.

The government claims that Talia died after Williams punched his daughter in the chest and the girl fell backward and hit her head on the floor of the family's military quarters at Wheeler Army Airfiled. By then Talia had withstood months of physical abuse at the hands of her father and stepmother

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