Jury to resume deliberations Monday in death of airman's son
SPANGDAHLEM, Germany — Jury members tasked with determining whether a Spangdahlem-based U.S. airman is guilty in the abuse death of his infant son deliberated for a second day Saturday without reaching a verdict.
The jury deliberated for about five hours on Friday afternoon following closing arguments in the case against Airman 1st Class Horace Wickware, who pleaded not guilty to charges of murder, involuntary manslaughter, assault, negligent homicide and child endangerment when his court-martial began Sept. 8.
Cordale Wickware, barely 8 months old, died Oct. 30, 2010, of a brain injury from being violently shaken, prosecutors said. He had been in the hospital on life support since Sept. 2.
In closing arguments Friday the prosecution and defense offered different scenarios for who was likely responsible.
The prosecution portrayed him as a disengaged father who didn’t devote much time to his son.
Wickware’s defense team sought to lay blame for the infant’s death on the airman’s wife, Jennifer Wickware, convicted in German court in May of maltreatment, negligence with lethal consequences and failing to adequately care for Cordale. She was sentenced to five years in prison. The prosecutor in her case said after her trial that he did not think she witnessed Cordale being abused, but that she should have taken action to protect the baby.
The eight-member jury will have to determine whether the evidence presented supports the case against Horace Wickware as the abuser. After deliberating for another four hours on Saturday, the panel adjourned until Monday.